Senate Blog

How does WSU Spend ‘Grant Lands’ Revenue?

Dear Colleagues: On January 27th we received a constituent concern about how the money raised from the 1890 land grant to WSU are expended. These lands were originally expropriated from tribal nations. This concern has been raised previously including in senate and during meetings between the Faculty Senate Executive Committee and the President and Provost. […]

Reasonable Accommodations

Last fall we had several discussions about how presumptively vulnerable faculty and staff might be reluctant to seek reasonable accommodations for fear that causing extra work or impacting the unit’s budget might lead to subtle or explicit resentment or retaliation in terms of annual reviews and opportunities for career advancement. In short, this issue could […]

What is Happening with SPS?

Dear Colleagues, Sponsored Programs Services (SPS) is an important unit at WSU that is tasked with, among other things, setting up accounts when faculty are awarded grants and contracts, and invoicing expenditures. There have been numerous complaints about SPS service and the backlog of accounts needing attention (exceeding 800 at the beginning of the academic […]

Concerns about administrative bloat

Dear Colleagues: Speaking for your Faculty Senate Officers, I can confirm that we receive a lot of input about constituent concerns whether it be through our concerns website, Senate Steering and Senate meetings, or through discussions and emails. The path to addressing such concerns is, frankly, much smoother when we have data-informed discussions. Here is […]

Tracking materials through Faculty Senate

Dear Colleagues: During the constituent concern segment of the February 3rd Faculty Senate meeting, we discussed the perennial challenges of tracking paperwork through the committee review process. We agree that it is a challenge, but there are also a multitude of moving parts, a lack of standardized nomenclature, and different requirements for different reviews. Given […]

Activity insight…Yes, it’s that time!

Dear Colleagues: If it hasn’t happened already, you will soon be asked to embark on the annual ritual of preparing your materials for your annual reviews, and this invariably includes working with Activity Insight to document your efforts. Many of us have traditionally entered the minimal amount of information to ease the pain of this […]

COVID-19 Transmission in Classrooms?

Dear Colleagues, Faculty and students are continuing to express concern about the safety of face-to-face instruction while the omicron wave is hitting our communities. Recent statements by the President and Provost about finding no cases of in-class transmission are viewed with incredulity. Afterall, most instructors have knowledge of students missing class presumably due to COVID-19 […]

Addressing Workplace Misconduct

Dear Colleagues: We recently completed a Qualtrics survey for information about the challenges that faculty face with staff recruitment and retention. As part of this survey, we received several responses on unrelated topics. In a couple cases, we received comments suggesting that the respondent has encountered issues of sexual discrimination, retaliation, favoritism, and nepotism. I […]

Mask Distribution at WSU & COVID Funding

Dear Colleagues: At the January 20th Faculty Senate meeting, a question arose about the fate of the WSU strategic stockpile of KN95 masks. I checked with our Deputy Chief of Staff and Director of Strategic Initiatives and Communications, Hailey Rupp, and she indicated that the original stock of 4,800 masks have already been distributed. Please […]

COACHE and Academic Analytics

Dear Colleagues – On January 20th, Senior Vice Provost Laura Hill presented information about the upcoming ‘Collaborative on Academic Careers in Higher Education’ (COACHE) survey that will be launched by late February. This effort is in response to a funded request from the legislature, and it offers an important opportunity for faculty to provide feedback […]