By | February 2, 2021
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THE SENATE STANDARD – ISSUE 2.19

ACC Full-Time Faculty Senate Website 

ACC Coronavirus page

Dear Faculty Colleagues,

NOTE:  After sending this Standard on Tuesday, we learned Regroup, the mass emailing tool we use for Faculty Senate communications, had an issue, leaving about 90% of the full-time faculty off the mailing list. IT has fixed the problem, so I’m sending this again for those who did not receive it.

The Full-Time Faculty Senate Leadership Team (FSLT) has a busy week of meetings with IT, TLED, and the Chancellor’s Cabinet to discuss issues faculty and senators have brought forward such as updated Faculty and Faculty Evaluation Handbooks and new tools to share the work of non-Shared Governance committees and workgroups. Planning for the February 5th Video Conference Summit is coming along. Find updated information about this important event below. In the last edition, I included a call for faculty volunteers to join a focus group regarding the next iteration of the Upward Evaluation process. Last year the Faculty Senate called for reinstatement of the Upward Evaluation process, and we have our first opportunity to chime in substantially on an issue important to faculty. Unfortunately, the first call for volunteers resulted in 0 volunteers. Indeed, we know how difficult life has become navigating the pandemic, and volunteer time is hard to come by. Just in case you can find some time, we’ve extended the deadline until Friday, January 29. As former Texas governor Ann Richards used to say, “If you’re not at the table, you’re on the menu.” We hope you will have some time to take one of the seats your Full-Time Faculty Senate has worked hard to secure. Speaking of which, our Nominations committee Chair Jennifer Brimberry and Elections and Audit Chair David Haney are preparing the nomination forms and election ballots for our senator election process to seat our ’21-’22 senators. Keep your eyes open for the nomination form, coming soon!

Onward through the fog!

Wayne

Senate Meetings / Minutes / Agendas

1/22/21 Senate Meeting – The minutes for this meeting are now in development. They will be posted once approved. Our next meeting is Friday 2/12/21. Please send agenda items to wbutler@austincc.edu.

Newsworthy

COVID-19 Vaccinations and a Senate Resolution: As we all know, getting COVID-19 vaccinations has been a frustrating and fruitless mad scramble. After having learned that area school districts created special access for 1A and 1B people, the senate is encouraging ACC leadership to lobby the regional health authorities to create special access for our most at risk colleagues as soon as possible. At the 12/22/21 senate meeting, the following resolution was passed by simple majority of 12 yeas, 2 nays, and 8 abstentions: “The Faculty Senate resolves that faculty members who want a COVID vaccination be accommodated with all appropriate, due haste, by the college itself.” The Faculty Senate Leadership Team will present this resolution to the Chancellor’s Cabinet on Friday 1/29/21 as part of our agenda item focusing on faculty mental health support with an appeal for more robust support services. FTFS President Butler had a personal conversation with Dr. MollyBeth Malcolm, Executive Vice President, Campus Operations & Public Affairs shortly after the resolution passed, and Dr. Malcolm shared that she is actively working on this issue as a member of various regional and local groups grappling with vaccination challenges.

Video Conference Platform Summit Date Set [Friday, February 5th, 1-3P]: All faculty are invited to this virtual gathering representing various stakeholders to share perspectives on how the college will go forward with Collaborate, Meet, WebEx, and Zoom. Representatives from TLED, IT, Student Services, the Adjunct Faculty Association and the Full-Time Faculty Senate will co-host the virtual summit meeting from 1-3P on Friday, February 5th. The most recent plans now include a panel discussion rather than serial presentations. Planners arrived at this structure to maximize QA. Keep your eyes open for updates and details as they emerge, including a link to the virtual meeting.

A Valentine’s Gift to You from Library Services – All ACC Faculty and Staff have full unlimited access to all premium content online from The Chronicle of Higher Education, which includes current articles and information, interactive data reports, newsletters, special reports, and features. Creating your account is easy – simply use your ACC email when signing up, and you will have access to premium content from any device.

  1. Go to chronicle.com on any computer or mobile device.
  2. Click on SIGN IN in the upper right corner.
  3. Choose SIGN UP on the next screen, and use your ACC email.
  4. Verify your email address.
  5. Start reading!

2021 Eco Conference [March 29-30, 2021] – This year’s Texas Regional Alliance for Campus Sustainability (TRACS) conference will be VIRTUAL (surprise!) and free to all students and employees. This year, we are featuring UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Earth Week [April 19-23] – It is that time of year again! This year we are celebrating the 51st Anniversary of “Earth Day,” VIRTUALLY! We have put together a list of potential SAFE activities to get ideas flowing. Click Here to Host your own event.

New Action Items [please check due dates below!]

Upward Evaluation Focus Group Volunteers [DEADLINE EXTENDED TO Friday, January 29]: HR’s Staff Professional Development and Evaluation office is looking at the possibility of bringing back the upward evaluation of managers here at ACC. As part of the charge, we are looking to partner with the Associations to better understand some of the needs and pain points they see from their point of view. We need 3 FT faculty volunteers to be a part of a faculty focus group conversation (3 FT faculty/3 Adjunct) sometime between February 8-12. If interested, please complete the volunteer form

Call for Participation [No deadline provided] : The Center for Peace & Conflict Studies (PACS) is working with students in PSYC 2389: Internship in Conflict Transformation and Peacebuilding to collect data about conflicts at ACC. Specifically, we are looking to interview students, faculty and staff about conflicts in which at least one of the parties was a student. Please note that these interviews only aim to understand your experiences. We will not make any attempts to resolve the conflict (if it’s still outstanding), or to guide you toward a resolution. You can read more about this opportunity and sign up for an interview by completing this form. For more details, contact Laila Taraghi at laila.taraghi@austincc.edu 

Nominate Students for The Chancellor’s Student Achievement Award [Deadline: March 12, 2021] The Chancellor’s Student Achievement Award is the most prestigious student award given by ACC. The recipient must demonstrate academic excellence, service to the college and community, and commitment to ACC values and vision. Perks of this award include a $500 check, a plaque, and the opportunity to deliver the student address at commencement. In order to be eligible for this award, students must meet the following requirements (Student Life Staff will verify eligibility upon submission. Don’t worry about checking these yourself): Minimum 3.5 cumulative GPA; Attended ACC a minimum of two consecutive semesters; Graduating in Spring 2021. Nominate your outstanding students by March 12, 2021. You can also find additional information about eligibility requirements and the selection process on the Student Life CSAA web page

Current Action Items (These are reminders for things I’ve already sent out):

Building Religious Literacy Faculty Interest Group [Due Jan. 27th ß LAST REMINDER]  This faculty interest group (FIG) is part of the new religious literacy initiative that will focus on Islam in the Spring of 2021. Apply here by January 27th.

Best,

Wayne