Opening the Oct. 28 meeting of the University
Senate in the Woodruff Library’s Jones Room was Michelle Smith,
director of corporate relations, who delivered a presentation on
the 2003–04 EmoryGives campaign.
Smith showed the promotional video for this year’s effort,
then gave an update on the campaign: Three weeks in, EmoryGives
had raised 32 percent of its $425,000 goal from 423 donors. Smith
said one major objective is to improve on last year’s 10 percent
participation rate among Emory’s 18,000–20,000 employees.
Next on the agenda was an announcement from Bill Branch, chair of
the Future of the University Committee of Faculty Council, that
the committee had reached an agreement with the Board of Trustees
(BOT) to appoint faculty as nonvoting "counselors" to
the board’s eight major committees (see story).
Branch said the move will lift Emory from having "almost the
least faculty representation on the board among our peer institutions
to having the most," and the addition of faculty to BOT committees
would inject creativity and imagination into the board’s deliberations.
Questions about the development included how new representatives
will be chosen once the first nine rotate off (the initial appointments
are for three years) and how the representatives will communicate
with their constituencies about BOT considerations. On the first
point, Branch said no final structures had been set in place and
that it was more important to get the first nine appointed; mechanisms
for choosing new representatives can be designed later.
To the second question, Branch said the nine faculty are part of
the 38-member Futures Committee, which reports to Faculty Council,
which in turn reports to the Senate. This structure of communication,
he said, is how he envisions the representatives staying in touch
with the larger University.
Next, Mary Anne Lindskog presented the roster of the honorary degrees
committee for approval and asked Senate members to solicit and submit
nominations for honorary degree recipients in 2005.
The final item on the agenda was the anticipated proposal from the
Senate’s ad hoc committee studying the University’s
pre-employment drug-testing policy. Sharon Strocchia, who chaired
the committee, explained the new proposal, whose basic points include:
* Testing would be done only on applicants for "safety-sensitive"
positions, such as drivers of University vehicles, providers of
campus security, individuals involved in patient or animal care,
etc. Strocchia said divisions would be given a good deal of autonomy
in determining which positions fall under these categories.
* Current employees wishing to transfer to a safety-sensitive position
would be tested. Strocchia said a positive test result would not
affect the employee’s prior, non-safety-sensitive job status.
* The policy would be reviewed periodically by the University for
overall effectiveness, and the proposal urged the administration
to share statistical results of the new policy with the Senate’s
executive committee at the one-year anniversary of its implementation.
* Supervisors would be encouraged to be attentive to job impairment
due to possible substance abuse and take appropriate action if
Employee Council President Don Newsome and Student Government Association
President Euler Bropleh, both of whom sat on the ad hoc committee,
expressed the endorsement of their respective organizations for
the new policy proposal.
One question that arose was whether divisions that wish to test
job applicants for all positions—for example, John Ford, senior
vice president for Campus Life, said at Senate meetings last year
that he wanted all new applicants to Campus Life to be tested—would
be allowed to do so under the proposed policy.
Strocchia repeated that divisions would be given wide latitude in
determining which of their job positions would be considered "safety-sensitive,"
but that testing would be restricted to applicants to positions
After a relatively brief discussion, the Senate voted unanimously
to support the proposed policy, which will be forwarded to President
Jim Wagner for consideration.
The next Senate meeting will be held Tuesday, Nov. 25, at 3:15 p.m.
in the Jones Room.
If you have a question or concern for University Senate, e-mail
President John Snarey at firstname.lastname@example.org.