June Board of Governors Meeting

June Board of Governors Meeting

June 18, 2018

Dear Colleagues:

The Truman State University Board of Governors met this past Saturday for their annual June meeting and retreat under the leadership of Board Chair Cheryl J. Cozette.  The Board welcomed two new Board members:  Mike McClaskey and K. Brooks Miller.  Both individuals are Truman alumni and their bios can be found on the Board of Governors website located at http://www.truman.edu/about/our-people/board-of-governors/.  The Board also passed a resolution recognizing Susan Plassmeyer, the out-going member of the Board, who served from February 2012-April 2018.

During their retreat on Saturday morning, the Board reviewed the progress of the University Strategic Plan – Truman Blueprint for Success: Intentional Experiences. Institutional Distinctiveness. Extended Reach. Organizational Excellence 2016-2020 and participated in discussions relating to enrollment and budget.

During their regular Board meeting, the members approved Operating Budgets for Fiscal Year 2019.  The budgets were developed using the appropriation recommended by Governor Greitens in the Executive Budget (a 7.73% decrease to the core appropriation for higher education).  The appropriation approved by the General Assembly restores funds, and if Governor Parson signs the higher education appropriation bill without restrictions, or restricts a portion of the funds restored by the legislature, a revised budget for FY 2019 will be submitted to the Board.   The Governor has until June 30 to sign the appropriation bills.

Given appropriation uncertainty, the Board took no action in regard to Salary Policies for Fiscal Year 2019.  Salaries for FY 2019 will continue at the FY 2018 levels, and contracts and salary letters will be issued after salary policies are approved by the Board.  It is the intention of the Board to hold a meeting in early to mid-July to finalize the budget and approve salary policies.

In addition, the Board approved enrollment fees for the 2018-19 Academic Year.  This action is also subject to change pending the Governor’s final approval of the appropriations bill.  The Higher Education Student Funding Act (HESFA) allows a statutory maximum increase for 2018-19 of 2.1% for Missouri resident undergraduate students based on the most recent calendar year Consumer Price Index (CPI) and commonly referred to as the tuition cap.  The General Assembly passed a budget that maintains public university operating funding at the FY 2018 level if institutions hold tuition increases for Missouri resident undergraduate students to 1%.  Because non-resident and graduate tuition rates have been increased beyond CPI in recent years, all categories of tuition are being increased at the same rate for 2018-19.  If the FY 2019 appropriation passed by the General Assembly is approved by the Governor, the tuition increase will be 1% rather than 2.1% with the difference waived.  If appropriation restrictions occur, tuition will increase by 2.1%.   The only change in designated fees is an increase in the Student Health Fee by $20 per academic year to provide funds to increase access to mental health care through the University Counseling Center.  This fee increase was approved by students during the annual student government election in April.

Additional action items approved at the June meeting include:

  • The acceptance of the proposal of Missouri Securities Investment Program (MOSIP) to provide short-term investment services.  Truman will utilize the MOSIP Liquid Series Fund for short-term investment due to favorable interest rates that have historically been a full percent higher than rates paid on normal bank demand deposits.
  • The deletion/inactivation of academic programs as follow-up to the Missouri Department of Higher Education (MDHE) program review process initiated late in the 2017-18 Academic Year and aimed at identifying programs with low graduation numbers.  The programs deleted include Ada Programming, Graduate Certificate; Bioscience Informatics, P.S.M.; Computer Security, Graduate Certificate; Education, M.A.; and Managerial Foundations, Graduate Certificate.  The programs to be inactivated include Art History, B.A.; Biology M.S.; Russian, B.A.; and Sustainability and Environmental Studies, Graduate Certificate.  The inactivation of Art History was approved by Faculty Senate in February 2018.  The inactivation of Russian was approved in April 2018.  All other actions were approved at the March 2018 Faculty Senate Meeting.  The deletion of Education, M.A. is not related to Truman’s M.A.E. but rather to correct confusion in the MDHE database.
  • The FY 2020 to FY 2024 State Capital Improvement and Maintenance Request which requests funds for the top priorities including Pershing Phase 2 renovation, Greenwood Center, a significant renovation of Kirk Building, and an Emergency Electrical Backup System which would provide electrical power to campus.  Although it is not likely that these requests will be approved, the capital requests must be submitted each year to the Coordinating Board for Higher Education and the Division of Design and Construction, Office of Administration.
  • The renewal of the Physical Plant Department Memorandum of Agreement for Unit I with the Laborers’ International Union of North America, Local No 773.

In terms of reports, I provided my regular President’s Report and, at the meeting and within their committee meetings, the Board received updates on Truman’s adoption of the New Core Curriculum – “The Dialogues”, mental health initiatives along with a review of leave of absence and students of concern procedures, financial reports, and on-campus construction projects.

During the closed session of the meeting, the Board reviewed recommendations for promotion and tenure effective at the beginning of the 2018-19 Academic Year.  I congratulate these dedicated faculty members and thank them for all that they do for our students and our University.

Promoted from Assistant Professor to Associate Professor:
Anton Daughters, Sociology
Rebecca C. Dierking, English Education
Yuna L. Ferguson, Psychology
Timothy A. Humphry, Chemistry
Kathy Otero, Accounting
Kelly N. Walter, Agricultural Science

Promoted from Associate Professor to Professor:
James D. Cianciola, Communication
Charles Gran, Music
Jesse D. Krebs, Music
Zhong John Ma, Biology
Robert Matthews, Computer Science
Teak Erin Nelson, Nursing
Beverly A. Perrachione, Elementary Education
Timothy D. Walston, Biology
Anthony E. Weisstein, Biology

Granted Academic Tenure:
Anton Daughters, Sociology
Rebecca C. Dierking, English Education
Julia Edgar, Communication Disorders
Yuna L. Ferguson, Psychology
Timothy A. Humphry, Chemistry
Kathy Otero, Accounting
Kelly Walter, Agricultural Science

A copy of the complete open session agenda can be found on the Board of Governors website located at http://www.truman.edu/about/our-people/board-of-governors/board-of-governors-agendas/.  The next meeting of the Board is scheduled for Saturday, August 4.

Thank you for your work in assuring Truman’s next 150 years are even better than the first 150.  I hope your summer is enjoyable and rejuvenating!

Best regards,