I. Call to Order
Chairperson Dick called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m. in the Blair Seminar Room of the Living Learning Center on the Washburn University campus.
II. Roll Call
Present were: Mr. Blair, Mr. Dick, Mr. Engel, Mr. Etzel, Mr. Felker, Mrs. Lee, *Mrs. Parks and Mr. Roth.
*Mrs. Parks participated in the meeting via telephone conference call.
III. Approval of Revised Minutes of July 25, 2001 meeting as mailed
It was moved and seconded to approve the Minutes of the July 25, 2001 meeting as mailed. Motion passed.
IV. Officer Reports
A. Chair's Report
Chairperson Dick began his report by saying "Wow" noting that the Living Learning Center is a "marvelous facility."
Chairperson Dick then said that following the next Kansas Board of Regents meeting we'll have a new official member of the Washburn Board of Regents in the person of Janice DeBauge. He said that her biographical sketch can be found on the Kansas Board of Regents web site. He noted she is an SMU graduate and a talented vocal musician. He asked Ms. DeBauge to join them at the table.
Regent Dick said he is continuing a tradition begun by his predecessor, Ben Blair, in hosting events to solicit input from constituent groups on the campus. He said there was a wine and cheese get together last week at which there was some very spirited discussion. He said these events are intended to help us [Regents] understand the campus and what's happening. He said he will be expanding the number of people involved in these gatherings with himself and other members of the Board wishing to join them. He said the next scheduled gathering will be a breakfast on the day preceding the next agenda review. It will be a new group of people representing a cross section of the campus. The event following September event will be towards the end of November and that one will involve students so we can gather an understanding of what's going on.
B. President's Report
President Farley, who joined the Board of Regents via telephone conference call from New York, reported that he was fortunate to have missed the tragedy at the World Trade Center as he had an appointment scheduled in the area adjacent to it a bit later that morning. He said people in New York are totally focused on addressing the problems associated with the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center.
Dr. Farley said the annual college report from U. S. News and World Report will be issued next week and that it's a real delight to be able to report that Washburn University is in the top ten of Midwest colleges in the upcoming issue. He said it's a "positive reflection on the faculty and the reputation we have." He said there are 56 public institutions in the Midwest region and Washburn is rated 7th and is in the top tier. He said the University will be updating its web site to reflect this new information.
He reported that, primarily through the efforts of Regent Karen Lee, Washburn University hosted the president of Tunghai University last week at which there was great attendance including the Mayor of the City of Topeka, the Secretary of State and the Consul General. He said they also visited with Governor Graves. He said this new relationship with Tunghai University will permit us to begin scholarly activities and exchanges of faculty and students. He said the institution in Taiwan has enrollment of approximately 14,000 students and has 24 graduate programs. He said this arrangement would not have happened but for Regent Lee.
President Farley reported that two of the University's fraternities have garnered national honors. He said the local chapter of Phi Delta Theta garnered three national awards: Gold Star Award, General Headquarters (GHQ) trophy and the Community Service Citation. He said also that Sigma Phi Epsilon for the fifth consecutive year is the recipient of that organization's Buchanan Cup, the highest award possible for a chapter of Sigma Phi Epsilon. He said among the criteria used to award the cup are academic performance, community and alumni relations, and programming.
Dr. Farley said President Bush recently appointed a Washburn alumnus, Roger Noriega, ba '82, to serve as U. S. ambassador to the Organization of American States.
President Farley then said he'd like to spend a few minutes on an issue, noting that the Kansas Board of Regents is meeting next week on September 19 & 20. He said he would invite members of our Board to attend as it is a very important meeting. He said he wanted to refresh members of the Washburn Board concerning the 2+2 PLAN program as this will be a topic of discussion at the upcoming Kansas Board of Regents meeting. He said PLAN is designed to provide existing programs to place-bound students at the community college areas. He said it is totally oriented for place-bound students and utilizes existing programs.
Dr. Farley noted there is also some economic development benefit for those communities as persons who are in those community college communities need not leave to complete their college degree at a distant location. He said the program involves having a contract with participating community colleges under which a community college provides student services, classrooms, library and computer services and reimbursement to the community college from Washburn.
Washburn delivers to associate degree graduates of the community colleges the opportunity to complete their undergraduate degree by offering upper division programs. He said individuals may complete their 124 degree requirement along with completing the upper division credit requirements from Washburn by taking other internet connected courses from Washburn, from other four-year institutions in the state of Kansas or four-year institutions anywhere, or at the community college if those course credits fit our distribution requirements for a degree from the University.
He noted that the establishment of PLAN followed all the rules of the Kansas Board of Regents for mediated instruction and we have an affiliation contract with all of the community colleges participating in the program. He said the program has been approved through the appropriate channels at both Washburn University and its coordination with faculty and at the Kansas Board of Regents.
Dr. Farley said the administration believes the Washburn University Board of Regents has the responsibility, in conjunction with the faculty, to approve degrees and programs and that responsibility is vested with no other entity.
He said there have been concerns raised by the other four-year public institutions in the state of Kansas which has engendered quite a bit of debate. He said these are legitimate concerns. One is the that it is a financial issue with some who are concerned that our acceptance of the community college transfer credits in excess of 64 credit hours from the community colleges has the effect of creating three year schools at the community colleges versus two year schools. He noted that no other of the four-year institutions has expressed a desire to offer the program that Washburn is offering and there presently are only 100 students enrolled. He said we are taking advantage of existing capacity in offering these students the opportunity to complete their degree. He said we think it's a quality program, notwithstanding the inference from those object to our offering it that it is somehow a lower quality program. He said he sees personally no difference in the quality of the 65th hour of community college credit over the 64th hour, and that we think students will take as many upper division credits under the PLAN program as they would were they enrolled at Washburn University. He said we know there are students on our campus as well as on the campuses of all other public institutions who complete their degree by taking more than 64 lower division courses.
He said there has been a policy introduced for discussion at the upcoming Kansas Board of Regents meeting. He said there are certainly some legal issues over the matter concerning the authority of the Kansas Board, but said we would all hope that it wouldn't come to that. The matter will come to their attention on Thursday morning, September 20. The meeting, according to Ms. DeBauge is scheduled to take place in the Jayhawk Towers.
Dr. Farley said he would ask as many of the Regents as can attend the meeting. He said there are five points that he'd like to leave with them about PLAN:
that it is a true partnership between Washburn University and the participating community colleges to serve place-bound students;
that Washburn University has followed all of the rules of the Kansas Board of Regents with respect to distance education as well as the rules of our own campus complete with articulation agreements;
that the matter is solely in the purview of the Washburn University Board of Regents;
that Washburn is delivering a quality program, noting that the 65th hour is of no less value than the 64th credit hour from the community colleges; and,
that the matter really is a coordinating board issue and that it is the wrong issue for the Kansas Board of Regents to take up as a whole without the benefit of going through the coordinating commission of the Kansas Board of Regents.
Regent Blair asked if he could insert a 6th bullet - that the programs that Washburn University offers in PLAN likely would be picked up by out of state universities were they not offered by Washburn. President Farley said that is true because these institutions presently are offering other courses at these community colleges.
Dr. Farley concluded by saying PLAN is not a program per se, it's a delivery device of Washburn University providing some of our existing programs to place-bound students at the community colleges to allow them to complete their baccalaureate degree. He also noted that the proposed action by the Kansas Board of Regents might also operate to preclude Washburn from offering PLAN to campuses in other states, noting that Criminal Justice, by way of example, is currently receiving inquiries from other schools in and outside the state for its program.
President Farley then said he would ask the University's Director of Enrollment Management, Al Dickes, to share an update on enrollment information for the Fall, 2001 semester.
Dean Dickes said the enrollment data to date is very positive and that projecting the current data out to the end of the 5th week following enrollment, Washburn will have an increase of approximately 200 students to 6,100 students, or a 3% increase. He said student credit hour enrollment is projected to finish at approximately a 4% increase. In other categories he said he would anticipate the increase in first time direct high schools student matriculants at Washburn to be 3%, community college transfers 11%, and total student credit enrollment to be 2.5% above budget. He said he'd like to recognize and commend the hard work of April Hansen and all of the folks in the Admissions Office. Dickes said in undergraduate education the enrollment is generally up across the board with increases in the College of Arts and Sciences of approximately 5% in student credit hours, 3% increase in student credit hours in the School of Business and 5% increase in the School of Applied Studies. He singled out the Department of Criminal Justice in the School of Applied Studies noting they are up nearly 1,000 student credit hours this semester as compared to the fall semester 2000.
In response to a question from Regent Roth, Mr. Dickes reported the enrollment does reflect some ups and downs in the various units but there does not appear to be any pattern. He did say enrollments seemed a little soft in the Department of Social Work in the School of Applied Studies but noted there are now three Master of Social Work programs open nearby.
Chairperson Dick introduced the chair of the Department of Criminal Justice, noting that their enrollment is up nearly 1,000 student credit hours and indicated they are leaders in the development of distance education and PLAN. He said they have been aggressive in recruiting students, pointing out that their success points out the importance of student demand in enrollment. He said perhaps the success experienced by the Department of Criminal Justice is due in part to Dr. McElreath's role in the United States Marine Corps Reserves as Colonel McElreath is responsible nationally for the recruitment efforts of the Marine Corps Reserves.
Dr. McElreath introduced Cliff Roberson who he said is doing so much in achieving record enrollments and that he is a prolific writer, having more than 400 textbooks over the past 30 years. He also recognized Mike Birzer, who has been largely responsible for graduate programs, in which there has been a 45% increase. He also recognized other members of the department, Ron Tannehill, Charles Heller, Gary Bayens, Charles Lenior, Kay Welchhans, Frank Hicks, Brian Edward and Mike Manske.
C. Treasurer's Report
Vice President for Administration and Treasurer, Wanda Hill, began the Treasurer's Report by offering an update concerning the Living Learning Center. She said we are 90% complete on the punch list for buildings 1 and 2. She said the Regents will note there is a chance order in the agenda items for landscaping, which she said we hope to have completed by Monday at the latest. She said with respect to building 3, we have agreed on Monday to issue a Certificate of Substantial Completion and the punch list should be completed by the end of the month. She said furniture will be re-delivered on September 24 and they plan on an opening of the food court in the last week in September with a grand opening by Homecoming.
Vice President Hill then outlined the items in IV.C.1. through 4. It was moved and seconded to approve 1. Depository Security Transactions - July & August 2001, 2. Liquidated Claims Approval - July 2001, 3. Liquidated Claims Approval - August 2001, and 4. Public Fund Investments - August 2001. Motion passed unanimously.
5. Change Orders - Living Learning Center Project
Vice President Wanda Hill made a presentation outlining the change orders provided in the agenda item. It was moved and seconded to approve the change orders and for the reallocation of the $60,000 set aside originally to provide incentive for early completion to the contingency fund. By friendly amendment, the motion was amended to provide only for the approval of the change orders listed. Motion passed unanimously.
Chairperson Dick interjected that following the next scheduled Washburn Board of Regents meeting on October 6, the same day as Homecoming, there will be a donor reception at 9:30 a.m. for donors to the Living Learning Center project, a Homecoming parade at 11:00 a.m., followed at 12:00 Noon by the dedication of the new Living Learning Center, after which the fun and frivolities begin with tours of the facilities, parties and, of course, the football game.
6. Change Orders - Memorial Union
It was moved and seconded to approve the change orders contained in agenda item IV.C.6. Vice President Hill reported that the contractor is a little behind on the project but said that the convenience store is ready for occupancy although some fixtures have not yet been delivered. She said, however, the lounge area and basement offices for the student organizations are complete and, again, the facility should be operational by Homecoming. She said a primary holdup in completion is that glass to be installed has not yet been delivered. Motion passed unanimously.
7. Year End Financials (Fiscal Year 2000-2001 General Fund Operating Results)
Vice President Hill summarized the report in agenda item IV.C.7. noting the University closed out its fiscal year in August and that the financial report will be out in October with a report from the Auditor to be made to the Finance Committee and the University's Board of Regents in December. She said there were some disappointing losses in auxiliaries due largely to the construction efforts for the Living Learning Center with the loss of space for rentals and food service sales.
V. New Business
A. Action Items
1. Shared Leave Program
Vice President Hill said the policy proposed to the Board in this item was originated by the Employee Benefits Committee, recognizing Allen Easley, who is associate dean of the School of Law and led the group which developed the proposal. She said the proposal was very conservative providing for 65 days of paid leave from a shared leave pool for those persons who qualify. Qualifying for the participation in the program requires they give something of value, in this case one day of personal leave. She said the shared leave then is available only after an individual has exhausted all of his/her accrued personal and/or sick leave noting it's available only for the illness of a family member requiring the employee's presence except in those instances when it is the employee who has been unable to participate in the University's short term disability program for health reasons. She said the program should be effective July 1, 2002. It was moved and seconded to approve the proposed shared leave program set forth in agenda item V.A.1. Motion passed unanimously.
2. Rewrite of Insurance Policies
It was moved and seconded to approve the cancellation of current insurance policy and renewal of insurance policies as set forth in agenda item V.A.2. Motion passed unanimously.
3. AIS Project
Vice President Hill said the agenda item today before the Board of Regents represents the culmination of nearly a full year's worth of work involving nearly 60 persons, or more, and a number of committees including a steering committee, a change management team, a project management team, a negotiating team, and a selection team.
She said in February 2001 the University issued a Request for Proposals and received six responses, three of which became finalists. She said these all were subjected to intense scrutiny including telephone interviews and site visits at both the vendor and campuses at which the software was installed. She said SCT Banner was the only vendor meeting the requirements, the other two vendors were deemed not acceptable alternatives.
Vice President Hill said at the time the evaluation of the responses to the RFP was made, the selection team had no knowledge of the costs of any proposal because the administration did not want costs to be a deterrent in conducting a fair evaluation of all the respondents. The selection team did not know the cost of any of the programs until after its recommendation had been made. She said that SCT is not the least expensive but is the most expensive, but that it was the only software product deemed acceptable to meet our needs now and in the future.
She said it will take three years before the software is fully implemented. The first step is, of course, to get the contract signed after which we would purchase the necessary hardware to get the database up and running. She said time is really critical if we hope to have some of our functions, such as finance operational by July 1, 2002.
In response to a question from Regent Engel concerning the $2,035,000 cost of the software and implementation services and the $188,000 in hardware costs and the time for expenditure and availability of funds, Vice President Hill reported we do have funds on hand but we are not required to pay them out all at once and, in response to a question concerning the need for additional personnel and the cost attendant, that we do not have specifics on what those costs might actually be but that we are in the process of getting information from computer institutions. She said there will be some reallocation of persons depending on how many persons we have who have the skills desired or have the ability to acquire those skills. She said the steering committee is meeting Wednesday next with a chief topic of discussion being personnel for AIS.
Regent Etzel commented on the comparison data found in the agenda item, noting that he was puzzled there is such little supportive data recited in the item for SunGard and Datatel. He said it's almost like the criteria for selection were formulated over an SCT brochure. He said he wasn't saying that had happened, but that is something someone might conclude.
Vice President Hill said that SCT would not have been included in the final cut of three finalists for intensive scrutiny had the steering committee not asked they be included. She said the principal difference between SCT Banner and Datatel is that Datatel operates on a proprietary database that will probably not survive and, she said there's no guarantee that Datatel can actually make a transition to an integrated database such as Oracle. Mr. Etzel said the question is whether there is value there between the two for an approximate price differential of some 25%.
Regent Blair said the real cost is determined when it is installed, does it work.
Mayor Felker said that at City Council meetings every Tuesday night there is always question about why numbers don't match and he said it's because of software problems. He said there's nothing worse when something doesn't work like it's supposed to.
Vice President Hill said at the outset all of the people involved in the evaluation process were looking at each of the products from their own interest but in the final event they were looking for a solution for the entire University just not their own single area. She said it was a "unanimous recommendation as being the best solution for the University for now and in the future."
Regent Roth said it's not that he does not have faith in the recommendation put forward by those involved in the evaluation and recommendation, but it is asking to spend an awful lot of money and he just saw the agenda item for the first time tonight.
Regent Lee, who observed she too had not seen the item until tonight, asked what it means to spend $2 million to replace legacy software. First Vice President Hill noted as it stands now we have independent operating software and we do not even have a database.
Chairperson Dick said we cannot continue with the existing system, noting it is the functional equivalent of a horse and buggy. He said there are a series of risks ranging up to the various programs not being repairable, placing us in an almost manual situation requiring all transactions to be done by hand. He said the second aspect is we do not have the ability to data mine to determine, for instance, what students are doing and other information. We don't have the ability to use the system as a data system.
Vice President Hill said with the integrated information system we can have more accurate information as data would be entered only once rather than four or five times as it might be were the database not an integrated and relational database. She said the integrated database gives others better access permitting persons to do what if degree audits for example, and on-line information to help advisors to do likewise. She said it would also afford us the ability to do better executive reporting to keep the Regents and the administration informed. She said the new system recommended is "light years from where we are now."
Mayor Felker inquired what would be the outcomes were the decision for issuance of the software contract delayed to which Vice President Hill responded that a month delay now means a year delay at the back end of the implementation. She said we are pushing the envelope presently if we want to become functional in the finance area by July 1, 2002.
President Farley said he regrets that not all members of the Board received the item as they were all mailed at the same time from the same Post Office. He said one reason for the delay which prevented its inclusion in the packet which had been sent via Federal Express was to be able to make the item more clear to show why the recommendation was made as it was.
Dr. Farley said, as to the basis for the decision, the institution wanted a system which was totally integrated versus the other option which is to select the "best of breed" which might include the best financial accounting program, the best advising/admissions software, the best payroll software or the best student advising program, possibly from a number of different vendors, then having to have the University absorb all of the integration responsibilities. He said it is critical that each of those separate programs have the ability to communicate with one another in a transparent way.
He said as the review and evaluation process continued, the committee became very concerned about the Datatel database as it did not appear that it was installed at institutions of our size but smaller institutions. He said the reports are they are having and continuing to have problems with the database. Dr. Farley said with respect to Sungard, the committee was disappointed with one of its applications which is a critical application, that of financial aid. He said they have a very good and solid financial system but there were concerns that the financial aid program would not work in our environment and that it could not fulfill our financial aid functional requirements. He said following the review that left SCT Banner as the only one meeting the parameters of our RFP. He said he has seen SCT products installed and functioning in environments similar to ours, noting he has observed Banner for the past 15 years, and it is a matter that in the end we wound up with one vendor who could do all the things we needed. The President said we could do "best of breed" but doing so would assume the cost of integrating the disparate software packages which could be more costly and which does have a greater risk of failure than in stalling a single integrated system. He said there were a lot of people at the institution looking at it and arriving at the same conclusion.
Regent Etzel said that at dinner Regent Roth commented on the fiduciary responsibilities of regents. He said the approximately $500,000 difference of money between SCT and the next product which we receive from taxpayers and students is important and might be seen by some as comparable to being seen driving a new Jaguar when one could do with a Chevrolet. He said he is not suggesting anything irregular, but he said he is somewhat puzzled if two of the three finalists are found to be unsatisfactory.
Chairperson Dick said there are a range of options available to the Regents. There could be a vote, yea or nay; there could be an adjournment for a fixed period of time, 15 or 30 minutes, for members of the Board to review it more carefully; there could be action following Mayor Felker's suggestion of delaying it to early next week; or, we could wait until the October 6 meeting.
Regent Engel noted there is an additional concern beyond the price differential between SCT Banner and the next bidder and that is the unknown personnel costs.
Regent Blair observed that one possibility in addition to those suggested by Chairperson Dick would be to approve the item subject to review, for, say, a two day period, and if there were any objection then there could then be a conference call and a vote on the subject.
Regent Engel moved to table the item to the October 6 meeting. Motion seconded.
In response to a question from Regent Blair about the consequence of a delay, Vice President Hill said it would create delay in acquiring the hardware which would adversely affect the installation process getting finalized and reiterated that we appear to be pushing the envelope in order to have our financial program up by July 1, 2002.
Regent Lee expressed discomfort about not having the agenda item in advance of the meeting and having the information in front of her. In response to her questions, Vice President Hill said that SCT is the best fit and it has a record of doing what it has promised and that the recommendation and selection of SCT was a unanimous decision.
Vice President Wasserstein, also in response to Regent Lee's questions, indicated that SCT has hundreds of installations like ours and there is no comparison of similar successful installations by the other vendors. He said they have very few installations at institutions like ours.
Regent Etzel said if the number of installations were the primary criteria, why engage in review of the other respondents. Vice President Wasserstein said it was not the primary factor, but a factor, and that the committees did not want to make the assumption that it or any other was the only one.
In response to a query from Regent Roth whether SCT would contractually bind itself to have the finance program functional by July 1, 2002, Mary Lou Herring, the University's Controller, said that could be included in the contract. Regent Roth then said if it were possible to write that as a contractual obligation now it likely would be able to be done similarly in three weeks.
President Farley said there are a number of very solid concerns and issues but there are a number of things we can do to keep us moving ahead. He said if the Board decides to delay consideration until its October 6 meeting the administration will continue to make progress. Upon vote on the motion to the table, the motion passed by a vote of 5-1.
4. Health Insurance (University Health Plan Renewal)
Vice President Hill said the administration was shocked to say the least about the projected rate increase when it first received the new renewal rates for plan year beginning November 1, 2001. She said the increases in the proposed rates were attributable to prescription drug usage by participants and doctor visits. She said when the Blue Cross representatives, including Donna Paxon who was present at the meeting this evening, they brought four options with them to provide some relief. She said in addition to those four, four others were identified by the institution that we wanted them to explore, bringing to a total the number of options to eight. She said we were particularly distressed with the increase in rates because it seemed to have a greater impact on the lower compensated employees who were impacted most severely. She said the option recommended is Option A1 which increases drug costs on each plan and an increase in University contributions toward Plan III family coverage for employees with an annual basic salary of less than $45,750. It was moved and seconded to approve renewal of the University's health plan as recommended in agenda item V.A.4. Motion passed unanimously.
Regent Engel reported that the first meeting of the Finance Committee will be October 30 at 10:00 a.m.
B. Consent Agenda
It was moved and seconded to approve the Consent Agenda. Motion passed unanimously.
As approved by the Board of Regents:
1. Expenditures over $25,000
a. Modification and Replacement of Fire Alarm System - Project No. P-9809
Award of contracts to Davin Electric for $67,400 and Simplex Time Records for $90,895 to make modifications and replacement of fire alarm system in Henderson Learning Resources Center;
b. Furniture for Lee Arena Athletic Center
Award of contract in the amount of $119,637.28 to BA Design, LLC to provide furniture for the Lee Arena Athletic Center;
2. Personnel Actions
a. Faculty Personnel
Revise contracts for Terry Cummins' to .38 FTE for the Fall 2001 semester at an annual salary of $9,324; and, David Weed to full time Lecturer in the English Department in the College of Arts & Sciences at an annual salary of $31,224;
b. Administrative Staff - Ecord
Appointment of Michael B. Ecord as Construction and Renovation Design Technician at an annual salary of $30,000;
c. Administrative Staff - Byers
Appointment of Karmen Byers to the new position of Assistant Athletic Director for External Relations at an annual salary of $35,004; and,
d. Neighborhood Revitalization Plan Interlocal Agreement
Execution of the Interlocal Agreement dated September 7, 2001 continuing the University's participation in the City's Neighborhood Revitalization Plan as Amended.
Kenneth P. Hackler
Secretary, Board of Regents