Category: UW System

November Board of Regents Meeting

The University of Wisconsin System Board of Regents will meet at UW-Madison’s Gordon Dining and Event Center on Thursday, November 4. Registration for the Webex videoconference stream of the meeting is here.

The Business and Finance Committee will meet at 8:15 am to discuss three clinical trial agreements and one research agreement at UW-Madison.

The full board meeting will begin at 8:45 am and the board will hear updates from Board of Regents President Edmund Manydeeds and UW System Interim President Tommy Thompson and reports on diversity, equity and inclusion efforts and freedom of expression compliance.

The board will also consider changes to Regent Policy Document 6.4, “Selection Process for System President, Chancellors, Vice Chancellors and UW System Senior Leadership Positions” (below). PROFS has strongly advocated for changes to the policy which was changed in 2017 under the leadership of Board President John Behling. The changes approved four years ago limited executive search committees to ten members, including five Regents. PROFS was opposed to the changes and supported a return to search committees that honor the principles of shared governance.

The current policy says that search and screen committees include “five non-Regent members… to include two faculty, one staff representative from the institution, one student, and one community and/or alumni member.” The proposed new policy will say the committees include “at least five non-Regent members of the university committee to include at least: two faculty, one staff representative from the institution, one student, and one community and/or alumni member.”

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October Board of Regents Meeting

The University of Wisconsin System Board of Regents is meeting at UW-Oskhosh today and tomorrow. Registration for livestream coverage of the pubic portions of the meeting is here.

This morning, the board met in closed session before breaking to meet in committee:

  • The Audit Committee heard several reports and updates on Title IX investigations and information technology security.
  • The Capital Planning and Budget Committee discussed several construction projects and real estate agreements.
  • The Research, Economic Development, and Innovation Committee heard several updates, including one from the new UW-Madison School of Computer, Data & Information Sciences.
  • The Business and Finance Committee heard several reports and discussed two collective bargaining agreements with the Building and Construction Trades Council of South Central Wisconsin and a half dozen contractual agreements at UW-Madison and UW-Milwaukee.
  • The Education Committee considered approval of eight new degree programs at UW-Madison, along with two others from UW-Parkside. They also had the second reading of revised mission statement for UW-Stout and UW-Whitewater.

The full board will meet at 1 pm and hear updates from Regent President Ed Manydeeds and Interim President Tommy Thompson. UW-Oshkosh President Andrew Leavitt will also speak on the role of the comprehensive university, and Dr. Eve Fine will discuss unconscious bias and assumptions when evaluating job prospects. Fine is Director of Curriculum and Development at UW-Madison’s Women in Science and Engineering Leadership Institute. The board will conclude its work this afternoon in closed session.

Friday, the board will consider approval of committee action, hear a presentation on the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference, and present the 2021 University Staff Excellence Awards.

PROFS Testimony on AB 413, Relating to “Anti-Racism and Anti-Sexism Instruction and Training at the UW System and Wisconsin Technical College System”

The Assembly Committee on Colleges and Universities is holding a public hearing on two bills this morning, including Assembly Bill 413, legislation that would prohibit instruction on systemic racism (referred to by some as Critical Race Theory) at UW System and the Wisconsin Technical College System. PROFS strongly opposes this legislation and is registered against bill and its companion, Senate Bill 409.

PROFS offered written testimony from PROFS President Michael Bernard-Donals to the committee:

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UW System Interim President Tommy Thompson Discusses Reopening UW Campuses

Last Thursday, University of Wisconsin System Interim President Tommy Thompson participated in a virtual WisPolitics luncheon and shared his plans to welcome students, faculty, and staff back to campus this fall. Thompson also reiterated his view that the Legislature’s Joint Committee for Review of Administrative Rules does not have authority to require UW System to submit Covid-19 policies to the committee for its approval.

 

 

UW System Special Regent Committee on Governance Issues

Earlier this month, University of Wisconsin System Board of Regents President Ed Manydeeds appointed six Regents to a special committee to examine governance issues. The creation of the Special Regent Committee on Governance Issues is the result of a resolution passed at the Board’s May meeting.

Manydeeds appointed the following Regents to the committee:

  • Regent Scott Beightol
  • Regent Héctor Colón
  • Regent Michael Grebe
  • Regent Tracey Klein
  • Regent John Miller
  • Regent Cris Peterson

Manydeeds and Regent Vice President Karen Walsh will serve as ex officio members of the committee, which will be chaired by Regent Klein.

The committee’s first meeting is at 2:30 pm, Tuesday, August 31. The full agenda is below and a link to join the Webex stream of the meeting is here.

After discussing the committee’s charge, the members will discuss the chancellor search process. UW System Interim Vice President Jeff Buhrandt will discuss proposed changes to Regent Policy Document 6-4, “Selection Process for System President, Chancellors, Vice Chancellors and UW System Senior Leadership Positions.” Changing the composition of the chancellor search committees is among the proposed changes.

Regents most recently made changes to RPD 6-4 in 2017 when they voted to add language to the policy that limited the size of search committees to ten — five Regents and five members of the university community, including two faculty members. Regents also added language to the policy that removed the requirement for a chancellor to have earned a terminal degree in their field.

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UW System Interim President Tommy Thompson: Running UW System is Our Responsibility

Pushing back against a directive by the Legislature’s Joint Committee for Review of Administrative Rules (JCRAR), UW System Interim President Tommy Thompson offered his thoughts in an op-ed released today.

Earlier this month, the Republican-led committee voted along party lines and ordered UW System to submit Covid-19 related policies to the committee as emergency rules subject to JCRAR approval.

Thompson said today he doesn’t believe the committee has oversight and does not plan to comply with the committee’s order. His op-ed is below.

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State Rep. Adam Neylon on Committee Oversight of UW COVID-19 Policies

State Representative Adam Neylon (R-Pewaukee) appeared on WISN’s UPFRONT yesterday to discuss recent action by the Legislature’s Joint Committee for Review of Administrative Rules (JCRAR) that would require UW System to promulgate emergency rules for COVID-19 related policies within 30 days. The committee, which is co-chaired by Neylon and State Senator Steve Nass (R-Whitewater), would then approve or suspend the proposed rules.

Neylon told host Adrienne Pedersen the committee’s intent is to prevent overreach by the university:

“Too often, we’ve allowed agencies, the administration, the UW System, to circumvent the legislative process in doing these unilateral rules that have the same impact as law, without going through the legal legislative process.”

PROFS is strongly opposed to the action of the JCRAR. Our statement is here.

 

July Board of Regents Meeting

The University of Wisconsin System Board of Regents is meeting in Madison today and tomorrow, July 8 and 9. Registration to view livestream coverage of open portions of the meeting is available here.

Regents met in committee this morning:

The full board is meeting this afternoon and tomorrow morning:

Thursday afternoon, the board will hear reports from Board of Regents President Edmund Manydeeds and Interim President Tommy Thompson. Manydeeds is presiding over his first meeting since his election as board president last month.

The board will discuss a return to in-person instruction in the fall and hear an update on legislative issues before voting on the 2021-22 annual operating budget. The proposed budget does not include a tuition increase despite the decision by the state’s Joint Finance Committee to not extend the 8-year tuition freeze, freeing the Regents to include a tuition increase this fiscal year.

On Friday, the board will discuss the presidential search process, approve committee action, hear a report on summer bridge programs for incoming freshmen, and recognize the service of Emeritus Regents John Behling and Becky Levzow.

 

PROFS Statement on the Legislative Budget

Last night, the Wisconsin State Senate approved the the 2021-23 state budget proposal by a vote of 23-9. Three Democrats — Senate Majority Leader Janet Bewley, Brad Pfaff and Jeff Smith — joined all the Republicans present to vote in favor of the bill. This is the first time since 2007 that a budget bill passed with bipartisan support. The bill now awaits action from Governor Tony Evers who can sign the bill into law, sign it with partial vetoes, or fully veto the bill.

PROFS statement on the budget is below:

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