December Board of Governors Meeting Report Including Approved 2024 Salary Policies

December Board of Governors Meeting Report Including Approved 2024 Salary Policies

December 4, 2023

Dear Colleagues:

Our Board of Governors met this past weekend under the leadership of Dr. Cheryl Cozette, Board Chair.  Board members participated in a working session, committee meetings, and a board meeting where they approved several impactful action items.

2024 Board Officers and Committee Membership
The Board elected officers and assigned committee membership for the 2024 calendar year.  New officers who will take office for one year commencing at the first regular meeting of the calendar year are Nancy Gingrich, Chair; Philip C. Christofferson, Vice Chair; and Bill Lovegreen, Secretary.

2024 Salary Policies 
Salary policies for the 2024 calendar year were approved.  The approved salary increases take effect January 1, 2024, for employees on the payroll as of that date unless a previous employment agreement indicates otherwise.

Non-tenure track full-time faculty salaries will increase by at least $1,000, with some individual salaries increasing up to $3,205.  Tenure track and tenured faculty salaries will increase by at least $1,000, with some wages increasing up to $7,500.  These increases were determined through the work of the Faculty Compensation Committee.  The primary focus for 2024 is raising starting salaries.

Increases for staff follow the goal of raising the lowest staff salaries.  Exempt staff will receive increases ranging from 3 to 5%.  Those who currently earn an annual salary of $40,000 or under will receive a 5% increase; those earning a yearly salary of $40,001 to $60,000 will receive a 4% increase; those earning an annual salary of $60,002 – $100,000 will receive a 3.5% increase; and those currently earning a yearly salary of $100,000 or above will receive a 3% increase.  Non-exempt staff not covered by the hourly schedules who now make up to $19.23 per hour will receive a 5% increase, and those who earn above $19.24 per house will receive a 4% increase.  Non-exempt starting salaries for clerical, secretary, and similar office positions and Unit 1 (Physical Plant employees) will be increased by 5 to 7%.

Finally, a one-time retention incentive was approved.  To recognize faculty and staff who have served Truman since July 1, 2020, all full-time employees on the payroll on July 1, 2020, and still on the payroll as of December 1, 2023, will receive a $500 retentive incentive to be included in their December paychecks.

Each employee’s Employee Position and Composition Information, found on TruView under Employee Tools, will be updated after the first of the year.  Faculty will receive an email from Provost Eric Freedman reflecting the amount that their base salary will increase.  For questions, staff should contact Payroll, while faculty should contact the Provost Office.

Union Agreement Renewal
Physical Plant employees are represented by the Laborers’ International Union of North America, Local No. 955.  The Board approved a renewal of the current memorandum of agreement updating paid parental leave and funeral leave to match current University policies, updating wages as noted above, and changing the MOA agreement review dates to reflect a three-year rather than a two-year duration.

Housing Charges
Housing charges effective with the 2024 Fall Semester were approved.  The Board approved an average increase of 4% for apartment and single and double room rates.  Proposals for meal plans will be presented to the Board in February, given that a competitive bid process is underway for campus food services.

Bachelor of Science in Data Science
The Board approved adding a new undergraduate program, pending the approval of the Coordinating Board for Higher Education (CBHE).  The new Data Science B.S. degree incorporates data science courses with work in computer science, statistics, mathematics, and other areas to provide the foundation that students need to pursue careers in data science in many subject realms (health, insurance, ecology, marketing, accounting, engineering, consulting, and more) and ensures that students are well-prepared for graduate study.  Students can access the major beginning in Fall 2024, pending CBHE approval.

Code of Policies Amendment Related to Faculty Positions and Titles
An amendment to Section 6.030.1 of the Code of Policies of the Board of Governors entitled Faculty Positions and Titles was approved.  The approved amendment offers non-tenure track or “term” faculty multi-year appointments and sets the standard employment offer for term faculty at three years, with an opportunity for renewal.  Term faculty are currently offered one-year appointments.  The awarding of multi-year contracts for non-tenured faculty should make Truman more competitive in recruiting this appointment type.

Code of Policies Amendment Related to Naming Opportunities
The Board approved a change to Section 13.050 of their Code of Policies entitled Naming Opportunities.  The approved amendment expands the guidelines for naming campus spaces, programs, and landmarks, corrects a typographical error, and removes unnecessary and vague language in the current guidelines.

Approved Naming Opportunities
Consistent with Board policy, four naming recommendations were approved.  The lobby within the Greenwood Interprofessional Autism Center will be called the Dr. R. Keith and Lu Ann Beeman Lobby in recognition of the Beemans’ generous financial contribution of $100,000 to the Greenwood Interprofessional Autism Center construction project.  The activity room within the Greenwood Interprofessional Autism Center will be named the Cindy O’Laughlin Activity Room in recognition of her tireless work to establish an autism center in northeast Missouri and for spearheading an appropriation of $4.6 million from the Missouri Legislature for the construction of Center.  The Sustained Knowledge of Integrated Lifelong Learning (SKILLS) Center located in the Student Success Center of the soon-to-be-renovated Kirk Building will be named the Senator Roy and Abby Blunt SKILLS Center in recognition of their enormous support of the key services to be made available to the local community and for the Senator’s work in spearheading a federal appropriation of $6 million for the renovation project.  Finally, the Board retroactively to August 30, 2023, approved the naming of the newly renovated space in the northeast corner on the first floor of Pickler Memorial Library as the Doug and Diane Villhard Innovation Lab in recognition of Doug and Diane Villhard’s generous financial contribution of $100,000 to fund the campus-wide resource.

Professional Leaves
The Board approved faculty sabbaticals for the 2024-25 Academic Year.  Please join me in congratulating the following faculty members.  We look forward to hearing about the impactful outcomes of their sabbatical work.

2024-25 Academic Year
Dereck Daschke, Professor of Philosophy and Religion
Aaron Fine, Professor of Art
Stephanie Maiden, Associate Professor of Biology

2024 Fall Semester
Charles Gran, Professor of Music
Amy Norgard, Associate Professor of Classics

2025 Spring Semester
Nancy Daley Moore, Associate Professor of Health and Exercise Sciences

Finally, in terms of reports, Conor O’Flaherty, founder of Enliven Agency, Inc., and Hayden Wilsey, associate director of marketing, were present for the Board’s working session to discuss Truman’s new marketing strategy.  Committee meetings included a review of financial reports and status reports on academic reorganization, student engagement, and construction projects.  Within the President’s Report, I provided an update on the opening of the Greenwood Interprofessional Autism Center.  I highlighted a recent coffee and chocolates focused on the status of the Kirk Building renovation and a preview of the collaborative services model that will be employed by the units in the new Kirk Student Success Center.  In addition, I highlighted a “Better – Because of You” advancement campaign strategically focused on increasing the base of donors and the recent visit of statewide leadership from the Department of Economic Development and Missouri Partnership interested in the Truman/Kraft Heinz partnership.

A copy of the open session agenda can be found on the Board of Governors website.  The next regular meeting of the Board of Governors is scheduled for Saturday, February 3, 2024.

I wish you a fantastic end to the semester and a joyful holiday season!

All the best,