Emory Report
December 8, 2008
Volume 61, Number 14



Emory Report homepage  

December 8
, 2008
University Governance Roundup

By leslie king

Employee Council learns about partner violence project
Initiatives in the works and learning opportunities were the focus of the Nov. 19 Employee Council meeting.

Paula Gomes, director of the Faculty Staff Assistance Program, and Sheryl Heron, assistant professor of emergency medicine, introduced a project that they have been working on since 2007: the Intimate Partners Violence Working Group. Gomes and Heron gave a breakdown of how the project group wanted to fulfill its two missions: to increase awareness of the issue and of programs available on campus and to improve resources available to victims.

Director of Learning Services Wanda Hayes gave an overview of the programs, new since January, and classes offered by Human Resources, including five certificate programs. Gary Cruze discussed how his Center for Lifelong Learning course about improving communication can help participants understand their dominant communication styles and how to communicate effectively with others.

Senior Vice President for Development and Alumni Relations Susan Cruse updated the Employee Council about the status of Campaign Emory, and remained positive about reaching the $1.6 billion goal.

Faculty Council hears panel on conflicts of interest
“Exactly where do you draw the line? What creates a conflict of interest?” were some of the questions that came out of a panel discussion on conflicts of interest in research at the Nov. 18 meeting of the Faculty Council.

President Steven Culler said the panelists did a good job of explaining “how we got to where we are and what we doing about it,” the uncertainty around conflicts of interest and how the process is evolving. A series of vignettes describing various scenarios would be “very, very helpful” to help clarify what does and doesn’t fall into a conflict area, he said.

Senior Vice Provost for Undergraduate Academic Affairs Santa Ono discussed the work of the Learning Outcomes Assessment Committee, part of Emory’s reaccreditation process. He asked for committee volunteers to help assess what student learning.

And Laurie Patton, director of the new Center for Faculty Development and Excellence, presented her ideas for a portfolio of faculty development processes.

Engagement theme of University Senate topics

University Senate members heard from two new directors of offices on campus and learned about ways to get involved in community outreach and problem-solving. Senate president Steven Culler said new Center for Women Director Dona Yarbrough and new Office of LGBT Life Director Michael Shutt are planning to build on what their offices have been doing as well as enhancing coordination with other groups on campus.

A presentation on Preparing Engaged Scholars, which Culler said “touches most of the constituency in the Senate,” provided a better appreciation for the multiple levels of engagement and real experience solving community problems. “Two or three things came to me that I could bring into my classroom that I might not have thought of,” said Culler, an associate professor of health policy and management. “It’s clear there is a lot of opportunity for the faculty to be involved,” he said, adding “it’s nice to see an strategic initiative that has a track record.”

Also speaking was President Jim Wagner who got some feedback on how much communication faculty and staff needed on the economic downturn, finding it to be in line with how much is being done now. “Not all aspects of the economic situation are negative,” Culler said was the conclusion. “And it offers an opportunity to assess what really is important and what can be put on the back burner.”