Blass commented that if he continued to chair the Research Council a goal of his would be to get a greater number of the members engaged in the activities of the council. For next year it would be good for the council to continue with the standing committees and continue the work of these committees.
Another issue Blass wanted to bring everyone’s attention was that of the Student Affairs Judicial Panel (3-faculty & 3-students) overturning a "f" grade for using a crib sheet. The panel reversed the professor’s decision and directed the professor to give the student an "w". Blass has sent a note to Tim Rogers asking for clarification on this issue. This issue will be discussed at next Monday’s Senate meeting.
Devine wanted to thank everyone for their service on this council and let each member know their contribution on this council is very important.
Walker stated that the council as a whole and its sub-committees, particularly, has done a lot of good work this year. He also wanted to bring to everyone’s attention an item that will come up this fall. He received a phone call from Hank Cochran, an ORNL scientist, who serves on the "fix-it" committee at ORNL. This committee has been charged by Al Trivelpiece to look for things that get in the way of the work of the scientists at ORNL and figure out solutions. Hank Cochran is very interested in pairing this committee with some committee from UTK with respect to operations of UTK/ORNL activities. The council has a committee like this and they have done some work in the past in terms of trying to find the stumbling blocks of research and see what can be done to change them. Early in the fall we want to get the ORNL and UTK people together and see if we can improve the way that relationship operates.
Walker reported on the SARIF funds and referred to the two large spreadsheets in the packet. The SARIF fund is administered as a series of small funds in a big fund which consists of 5 parts. One part is grant matching, where a PI sends in a proposal to a funding agency usually asking for equipment funds, and SARIF funds helps produce a package with cash matching. The other parts are EPPE, Small Grants, Summer GRA’s and foreign travel.
Blass discussed that the Research and Creative Achievement Self-Study Committee (RCASSC) report was developed for input into the 5-Year Plan. Blass opened the floor for discussion on the report with the goal leading to the Research Council endorsing this report. After much discussion on this report there was a motion to endorse the RCASSC document with a cover letter to the Vice Chancellor for Research indicating we have some further comments and suggestions regarding some of the details; and we have solicited the Research Council members for comments about these details which will be appended to the letter for his consideration as he works on the 5-Year Plan. The motion passed, with one no vote and one abstention vote.
Blass asked that members to send comments to him by COB on Wednesday, April 29th and he will put together and send back to members by end of week. Blass plans to continue this issue next fall.
Call for Nominations:
One nomination other than Blass was submitted but was respectively declined. A motion passed to close nominations. Blass was elected for another term. Blass encouraged members to let him know of any committees they would like to serve and any suggestions for next year.