University of North Florida
Board of Trustees
January 26, 2007
University Center at 2:30 p.m.
Trustees in Attendance
Mr. Luther Coggin, Mr. Justin Damiano, Mr. Wilfredo Gonzalez, Mrs. Ann Hicks, Dr. Chip Klostermeyer, Dr. Bruce Taylor, Mrs. Carol Thompson; Mr. Kevin Twomey
Dr. Edythe Abdullah, Mrs. Toni Crawford, Mrs. Wanyonyi Kendrick, Mrs. Joan Newton
Item 1 Call to Order
Chair Taylor called the meeting to order and announced that this meeting was being taped by Osprey TV Productions – he welcomed them to the meeting.
Item 1A Faculty Mentored Research
This item was addressed after Item 3 (see below).
Item 2 Chair’s Report
Chair Taylor stated that the first order of business was to honor Mr. Steve Halverson, a trustee who had served UNF with distinction and honor. He stated that Mr. Halverson had imparted great wisdom and insight while steadfastly supporting excellence and high standards. Chair Taylor presented Mr. Halverson with a plaque and read the inscription.
Mr. Steve Halverson acknowledged these remarks and stated that his tenure on the Board had been a remarkable journey. He spoke about earlier challenges faced by the Board, stating that every single step had included progress, commitment and dedication. Mr. Halverson reflected on the first elected chairman of the Board, Trustee Carol Thompson, stating that her leadership had been extraordinary and her successor, Chair Taylor, was also a remarkable leader. He referenced UNF’s leadership change, stating that the university had a great President and Provost.
Mr. Halverson stated that he had watched UNF make a transformational journey in a few short years, with an unremitting pursuit toward academic excellence. He stated that it had been a great privilege to be on UNF’s Board. Mr. Halverson stated that he felt he was leaving this Board with the university’s future being secure. He said he began his tenure with a sense of duty and was leaving with a sense of love. He offered appreciation for the awards, friendships and for the things that made the university great.
Chair Taylor thanked Mr. Halverson for his remarks and stated that the university appreciated Mr. Halverson’s continued friendship.
After his remarks about Trustee Halverson, Chair Taylor referenced the Association of Governing Boards (AGB) publication included in the meeting materials and asked the Board to review this at leisure. He spoke about the January 22nd Executive Committee meeting, stating that Trustee Twomey was asked to take Mr. Halverson’s position on this committee.
Chair Taylor reviewed the agenda from the Executive Committee meeting, stating that issues addressed were the creation of a board profile; review of board membership; and discussions about the Board of Governors (BOG) meeting, including the Pappas report submitted by two external consultants and the report from Lynne Pappas’s subcommittee of the BOG. He stated that Governor Pappas’s report offered the idea of using BOG sanctions for boards of trustees and presidents who intentionally subverted the BOG’s legislative agenda.
Chair Taylor stated that UNF’s Board could look forward to the presence of the Chair of the BOG and the Chancellor at upcoming meetings – their attendance would help establish better communication in an effort to impact governance.
Item 3 President’s Report
President Delaney stated that he would like to personally thank Mr. Halverson for his service on the Board. He stated that Mr. Halverson had made him a better president and he admired his commitment and contribution to the university. President Delaney offered appreciation to Mr. Halverson for his continued friendship and presented him with a gift from the university.
Item 1A Faculty Mentored Research
Chair Taylor stated that this item was added to the agenda so the Board could be more aware of UNF’s academic achievements. He asked Provost Workman to introduce the presenters.
Provost Workman stated that he too would like to thank Mr. Halverson for his extraordinary confidence expressed regarding his appointment as Provost. Provost Workman spoke about Mr. Halverson’s passion toward UNF’s advancement in academic quality and subsequent contribution to the region’s intellectual capital. He stated that this was evidenced by the forthcoming presentation. He introduced Dr. Sharon Cobb and Ms. Aubyn Williams.
Dr. Cobb stated that Ms. Williams graduated valedictorian from Fletcher High School in 2004 and attended the University of Florida where, within one year, she completed her AA degree. Dr. Cobb stated that Ms. Williams then returned to Jacksonville and joined UNF where she was majoring in economics.
Ms. Williams spoke about her project stating that she had chosen to take a GIS class. She stated that the GIS class required a research project and she had a contact with Beaches Habitat who needed to find land for low-income housing. Ms. Williams decided to use GIS to identify parcels of land that had potential for this venture. She said her interest in GIS and economic geography developed from this project and she became so interested that she changed her major. Ms. Williams stated that Beaches Habitat was still working on purchasing some of the land she identified.
Dr. Cobb stated that Ms. Williams’ research was published in The Florida Geographer, 2006, Volume 37. Each trustee received a copy of this publication.
Chair Taylor thanked Dr. Cobb and Ms. Williams for their presentation and stated that he looked forward to upcoming presentations.
Item 4 Open Comments
Chair Taylor offered the opportunity for open comments. There were no open comments.
Item 5 Consent Agenda
Chair Taylor asked for approval of the consent agenda. Trustee Twomey offered a motion and Trustee Thompson seconded. The consent agenda was approved as presented.
Item 6 Reports from the Educational Policy Committee (EPC)
Committee Chair Hicks stated that the last EPC meeting was made more interesting by Provost Workman’s presentation – the committee wanted to share that presentation with the full Board. She asked Provost Workman to speak about this item.
Item 6A Academic Quality
Provost Workman said that he was very glad to be giving this presentation prior to Mr. Halverson’s departure. He stated that Mr. Halverson had encouraged close responsible attention to the quality of the institution. Provost Workman stated that the university would continue to do so in an evermore effective way, keeping the Board informed of the results of scrutiny engaged in of UNF’s academic enterprise.
Provost Workman presented a brief overview of the processes employed to scrutinize academic quality. He read from Academic Affairs’ mission statement, adding emphasis to this statement: “The mission of Academic Affairs is to facilitate the critical pursuit of knowledge in an environment of civility and tolerance by providing excellent educational opportunities for all UNF students through a focused use of resources in scholarly programs that have relevance to the broad range of constituencies served by the university and that are subject to rigorous and ongoing scrutiny and improvement.”
Provost Workman stated that undergraduate education would always be at the center of UNF’s mission, as warranted by President Delaney’s reaffirmation to UNF’s commitment to quality undergraduate education by providing transformational learning opportunities (TLO’s).
Provost Workman stated that since UNF’s inception in 1972, there had been a strong focus on graduate education, with undergraduate and graduate education that was grounded in quality research with a commitment to serving the region. He spoke about accountability, listing three major ingredients – quality academic programs, quality student learning, and quality faculty.
Provost Workman stated that while UNF had its own commitment to excellence, there were also mandates from the university’s accrediting body, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS), which required the university to demonstrate specific learning outcomes for all programs and assess how these outcomes were being achieved.
Provost Workman stated that in addition to SACS, the university also had an opportunity to obtain accreditation for individual programs and entire colleges, and UNF had achieved accreditation where available. He stated that programs that weren’t accredited were actively pursuing accreditation or were seeking the needed prerequisites to qualify them for accreditation.
Provost Workman stated that during program reviews the university followed dictates of the State which required an external reviewer – UNF pursued reviewers who had achieved stature in their fields. Upon completion, the external reviewer’s report would be provided to the President, the Board and the BOG, which had not been the case previously – the Board had been omitted. He stated that in the future, program reviews would be presented to the Board so members would have the opportunity to see how the university engaged in the process of self-scrutiny.
Provost Workman addressed student learning, stating that every discipline measured learning outcomes and these results were used to drive improvement of curriculum. He then spoke about quality faculty, stating that UNF followed a rigorous recruiting and hiring process, with the institution hiring dozens of faculty during the last few years.
Provost Workman spoke about the promotion and tenure process, stating that faculty members were judged by quality rather than weight of their publications – these publications should present a good sense of our place in the academic universe.
Provost Workman concluded his presentation by stating that he would be happy on subsequent occasions to focus on any specific process the Board would like. He offered opportunity for questions/comments.
Trustee Thompson asked for clarification on student evaluations – were these included in faculty evaluation? Provost Workman stated that student evaluations were included – each year the department chair would write an evaluation in which student evaluations would be recorded and commented on.
Chair Taylor offered appreciation to Provost Workman for his presentation.
This item was for information only. No further action was required.
Item 7 Reports from the Finance and Audit Committee
Committee Chair Twomey stated that there were three reports from the committee. He asked Vice President Shuman to speak about these.
Item 7A Transportation Access Fee
Vice President Shuman stated that last year the Board approved a fee for up to $1.60 per credit hour (PCH) to cover the cost of an on-campus shuttle service which was to start when the road to the northern lot opened – this was now scheduled to be completed by August 15, 2007.
Vice President Shuman stated that the university had employed an outside consulting firm to develop a transit route, a vehicle needs analysis and a request for proposals. She stated that based on this report, the university was recommending that the transportation access fee be increased up to $3.85 (a fee that would be posted in the UNF Student Catalog). She stated that this proposed fee was also the recommendation (by a unanimous vote) from the Transportation Access Fee Committee. (The committee included 50 percent students and 50 percent faculty/staff.)
Vice President Shuman discussed the shuttle routes, stating that there were two proposed routes – a north route and a south route. She also outlined service hours for the shuttle service.
Vice President Shuman stated that the Transportation Access Fee Committee also discussed two additional options – Melrose Apartments and the St. Johns Town Center. She stated that the conclusion from the committee was to start with the basic routes and add options at a later date.
Trustee Damiano stated that the recommendation from the Transportation Access Fee Committee did take student feedback into consideration and students were excited about a shuttle system.
Vice President Shuman discussed infrastructure costs, stating that since faculty and staff would also have access to the shuttle system, the university was considering accepting responsibility for these costs.
Chair Taylor asked for a motion to approve the transportation access fee for an amount up to $3.85. The motion was offered seconded and approved unanimously.
Item 7B Quarterly Budget Report
Committee Chair Twomey stated that the budget was tracking along nicely and was in good shape – there were no anticipated budgetary issues.
This item was provided as information only. There was no further action required.
Item 7C Treasurer’s Report
Committee Chair Twomey stated that this report was provided as of October 30, 2006 and was in good shape.
This item was provided as information only. There was no further action required.
Item 8 Funding for AOL
Vice President Shuman stated that the Police and Fire Pension Board had officially reached an agreement to purchase the AOL building and the university was preparing an agreement to lease this building from them, pending the availability of already approved PECO dollars. She stated that the BOG had approved funding for this purchase and it would go before the legislature in the spring – plans were to complete this transaction by the end of the year.
Vice President Shuman discussed funding needs for the university’s relocation to the AOL building. She stated that the university was asking for authority to transfer $2.1 million from reserves to pay for rental, utilities, operating expenses and renovations.
Trustee Gonzalez asked if the lease agreement included an option to purchase. Committee Chair Twomey stated that the lease did include intent to purchase.
Trustee Thompson asked for clarification regarding the $2.1 million – were these funds needed within the next six months. Vice President Shuman stated that these funds were needed immediately to begin the process of relocation.
Trustee Thompson asked if there were funds available for operations. President Delaney stated that the $2.1 million would be used to make lease payments and start renovations and relocation. He stated that projections were for operating funds to be encumbered at the onset of the new fiscal year.
Chair Taylor asked for a motion to approve the transfer of $2.1 million from reserves to fund expenses as the university moved to the AOL building. Trustee Twomey offered the motion and Trustee Coggin seconded. The motion was carried unanimously.
Trustee Klostermeyer stated that faculty had raised concerns regarding write-offs – where was theft covered in the budget and what amount was written off for theft? Vice President Shuman stated that some stolen equipment had been covered through the State’s loss program and some money came out of the budget for classrooms. She stated that the university was self-insured through the state and theft was not listed as one particular expense. Vice President Shuman offered to prepare a report reflecting theft. Chair Taylor stated that a report reflecting theft would be useful.
Item 9 Capital Project Financing Activity
Vice President Shuman stated that the purpose of this item was to bring the Board up to date with the financing corporation, as a separate Direct Support Organization. She stated that the university was creating a financing team, including Bryant Miller Olive (bond counsel) and RBC Capital.
Vice President Shuman stated that the BOG had created new debt processes and guidelines which required each university to create a debt policy. She stated that all bond issues now required approval from the BOG and these new guidelines created changes to the timeline regarding BOT review, therefore a special meeting might be required to accommodate these changes.
Vice President Shuman discussed financing plans for late spring, stating that $25 million would fund the Student Union, making the total $46 million; new housing would receive $85 million; parking and housing had outstanding debt of $30-40 million which was under consideration for refinancing, with parking being 100 percent variable. She stated that all presentations reflected that financing was at the low end of the interest rate environment and the university would consider locking in interest rates on bonds – variable components might be added in the future.
This item was for information only. No further action was required.
Item 10 Capital Projects Update
Vice President Shuman stated that the purpose of this item was to bring the Board up to date on the progress of each building project. She spoke about the following projects:
- Skate Park – this project should be completed by the end of March 2007.
- Starbucks – the opening day for this location was the second highest retail sales of any Starbucks in Jacksonville – yielding about $3,500 per day.
- North/South Road – this project should be completed by August 15, 2007.
- Hodges Stadium – the stadium was receiving a face lift which included many improvements.
Vice President Shuman narrated a PowerPoint presentation describing the Master Plan with major projects including the densification of the campus core, relocation of parking facilities, acquisition of the AOL building and the introduction of a shuttle system. Her discussion then focused on:
- Brooks College of Health (BCOH) Addition – the design complimented the existing building by creating a unified look, using elements of the existing building. A people space was created in the courtyard. The main floor included general classrooms and the second floor included Student Health Services. The third and fourth floors were for administrative offices, counseling and general services space.
- Student Union – the design included a covered plaza as a people space for year-round use. The lake would be expanded to engage the building and create a new campus center of activities. The building would be completed in two parts – the business side and the fun side. The business side would include all student services, offices and Student Government offices. The fun side would include food services (replacement of Wackadoos function), meeting rooms, the book store and building services.
- Parking Services – the design would include the traditional use of brick with a modern flair. (This would be reflective of the new direction of campus architecture.) This would be the first building seen as you drove onto campus.
- East Ridge Housing – currently in the design phase with submissions expected by the end of February 2007. Phase one of this project would include approximately 1,000 beds.
- College of Education and Human Services (COEHS) – all new buildings would focus on the new campus center of activities. This building would play on the curvature of the lake and complete the quadrangle formed by the COEHS, BCOH, the Coggin College of Business and the Student Union.
Vice President Shuman concluded her presentation, stating that new building design was a clear departure from the boxy vocabulary prevalent in the 1970’s with new buildings being friendlier and more inviting. She stated that all buildings applied a green building program for sustainability, energy efficiency, low emissions of volatile organic compounds, and maximum natural light. Vice President Shuman stated that a consultant had been hired to begin the permitting process and development of the Greek road. She offered opportunity for questions.
Trustee Hicks asked if the university was still considering their address to be “St. Johns Bluff. President Delaney stated that the primary university entrance would be off Interstate 9A and would be changed to UNF Drive and the secondary entrance would remain off Kernan Drive. He stated that the Interstate 9A entrance was being completed by the Florida Department of Transportation and should be ready by the end of February – this included a new sign, landscaping, etc.
This item was presented for information only. No further action was required.
Item 11 Governmental Affairs Update
Vice President Owen provided the Board with an update of legislative and governance issues. In her update she discussed the 2007 legislative priorities, including enrollment growth, capital construction and academic program enhancements. She also spoke about the BOG’s three year PECO project list, 2007 legislation filed, and the agreement between the State Board of Education and the Board of Governors.
Item 12 President’s Summary
President Delaney talked about the report to the BOG made by Pappas Consulting Group, Inc., speaking about two themes in this report – too many universities seeking research status, and a lack of funding at the state level. He stated that he thought the report was intended to start a positive dialogue.
Item 13 Adjournment
Chair Taylor reminded everyone that there would be a workshop in February and encouraged all to attend. He adjourned the meeting.