The regular meeting of the Graduate
Council was held at 3:00 p.m. on Tuesday, September 23, 2008 in 110 AIME
Dr. Martin Bakker, Dr.
Dr. Catherine E.
Davies, Dr. Robert H. Findlay,
Dr. Yuebin Guo, Dr.
Dr. Michael Murphy,
Dr. Debra Nelson-Gardell,
Dr. Louis A.
Pitschmann, Dr. Nancy J. Rubin,
Dr. Edward J. Schnee,
Dr. Roy Ann Sherrod,
Dr. Derek G.
Williamson, Dr. Wilson Lowery for Dr. Shuhua Zhou
Allen, Dr. F. Todd deZoot,
Dr. Martyn Dixon, Dr.
Ms. Kenya Goodson, Dr.
Ida M. Johnson,
Dr. Charles J. Kacmar,
Dr. Miguel Mantero,
Dr. Carol B. Mills,
Dr. Wendy M. Rawlings,
Dr. David R.
Roskos-Ewoldsen, Dr. Samit Roy,
Dr. Harold Stowell,
Dr. Wayne J. Urban,
Ms. Sarah Watkins, Dr.
Keith A. Woodbury,
Dr. Kenneth E. Wright,
Dr. Vivian H. Wright
EX-OFFICIO MEMBERS PRESENT: Dean David Francko
GRADUATE SCHOOL REPRESENTATIVES PRESENT:
Dr. John Schmitt,
Dr. Natalie Adams, Assistant Dean
Beth Yarbrough, Registrar
I. Dean’s Welcome to the Graduate
Dean Francko welcomed everyone and made
introductions. Dean Francko asked if there were corrections to the
23, 2008 minutes. One correction was made on page three, paragraph four.
Minutes were accepted with the correction.
II. Reports from Graduate
There were no reports from the Graduate Council Committees.
III. Reports from the Dean’s Office
Dr. John Schmitt provided a status
report on the Electronic Thesis and Dissertation (ETD) project. The
Graduate School’s ETD website has been built, and we will “go live” as
soon as there is closure on several outstanding issues.
Seminars are being held to demonstrate
for faculty, staff and students. ETD submission will be voluntary for
Spring 2009 and Summer 2009, with mandatory electronic submission
expected to begin Fall 2009. All graduate faculty, staff and graduate
students will receive an e-mail as soon as ETDs can be submitted.
The 2009-2011 Graduate Catalog
revisions have begun. The first call has gone out, and all revisions
will be electronic.
The Graduate School website is being
revised with an A-Z index being added. The index will be available in
the online Graduate Catalog as well.
The Alternative Doctoral Residency
option that passed previously has only four items to be addressed in
proposals. Several departments are working on proposals to be submitted
soon. Once approved, alternative doctoral residency for a particular
department will be in addition to the traditional residency option.
Two committees of faculty emeriti are
selecting UA’s outstanding thesis and dissertation, and the Teaching,
Research, and Service Awards Committee will select the winners of those
five awards by the end of January 2009.
Dr. Natalie Adams announced upcoming
January 22nd – Nominations for Round 1 of Graduate Council Fellowships
January 9th – February 28th – Nominations for McNair Graduate
Fellowships need to
be submitted and will have a rolling evaluation.
February 12th – Nominations for Research & Creative Activity Fellowships
March 5th – Nominations for Round 2 of Graduate Council Fellowships are
April 2nd – Nominations for Round 3 of Graduate Council Fellowships are
The goal is to maximize all fellowship and
assistantship awards to provide the greatest number possible.
On December 8th, the Banner Application
will go live. Tutorials will be sent to departments and staff.
Departments will be able to see exactly what the student has submitted,
with the exception of the Statement of Purpose. This capability will be
The biggest obstacle is GRE scores, which
take approximately 4-6 weeks to be submitted to the Graduate School. The
Council members discussed possible ways to receive these scores faster.
Students receive a tentative score and are allowed to submit in the
application (notes section). However, a student may submit a GPA (to be
checked later) in the application.
One advantage of the Banner application is
that interaction with the student will be quicker. There will be training for the Application
Tracking Process for the Department, Faculty and Staff. As of December
8th, applications will be in both formats–paper and electronic.
The new application will have real-time data, and students will be able
to complete some information, save the application, and go back later to
All department chairs will be given access codes. It is up to the
department to give these codes to those who need them. There will be
training offered to secretaries, office assistants, and others. All
tutorials will be online and accessible.
On Thursday, March 5th, the Graduate School will host a recruitment
retreat. It will be at the Bryant Conference Center. The goal is to have
a representative from each department. Lunch will be provided during
this all-day retreat, and there is no cost to the departments. The
Graduate School wants to help departments increase prospects, in order
to increase enrollment. At the end of the retreat, Graduate School
representatives will discuss ways of using available recruiting
resources more effectively.
The speaker will be Tom Jackson, owner of The Graduate and Professional
Enrollment Management Corporation. He will talk about GRE search,
Banner, Application Tracking, new ideas, and so forth. Conventional
wisdom has been that when the economy declines, the number of
applications will increase. However, the trend may be different in this
severe economic downturn.
Dean Francko handed out a proposal for strategic planning. The Council
is the first group on campus to view this document. One intent of the
proposal is to shape the discussion of what the University does after
reaching its overall enrollment goal. We must increase graduate
enrollment and become more visible as a research institution. One goal
is to have fifty percent of our graduate students funded. This is a
five- to–six year goal.
The UA Graduate School is a national leader in minority recruitment and
graduation, and the Graduate School awards approximately thirty percent
of UA’s degrees. Graduate students are an income producer for the
University, as President Witt has mentioned in several public forums
recently. The Graduate School is making money, and President Witt is
well aware of this.
UA now is receiving approximately 6500 applications for graduate
admission per year. However, we need to increase this number to
10,000-12,000 applications. As the entire University increases
enrollment, we will need assistantships to fill gaps in teaching,
contribute small scholarship awards through the departments, and so
The ultimate size of the University depends on undergraduate/graduate
recruitment and student retention. Success in obtaining grants is an
important factor in earning tenure and in the required 6-year reviews of
faculty for renewal of graduate faculty status. When departments focus
on generating money through grants, they typically are able to increase
the number of graduate students enrolled.
Selected goals for the Graduate School are as follows:
• Increase fellowships to 110
• Increase application fees
• Increase assistantships
• Generate more ideas for getting Graduate Council Fellowship recipients
to commit earlier to UA
• Increase communication at all levels
IV. Reports from Standing University Committees
There were no standing committee reports.
V. Old Business
There was no old business.
VI. New Business
Michael Murphy thanked the Graduate School staff for their help in
getting the Anthropology doctoral program’s 5-year post-implementation
report submitted, in part by facilitating the timely graduation of the
ACHE-required number of Ph.D. recipients.
Dean Francko adjourned the meeting at 4:30 p.m.