Univ. senate tackles student issues

Kim McMurray

Decreasing class size, increasing tuition and a call for the University to release a formal statement concerning the Ener memorial controversy dominated discussion at the fifth University Senate meeting of the year, which took place on Jan. 28 in the East Lounge of Dougherty.

The first order of business was the submitting of the annual budget, now fully balanced, to the Senate by the University Senate Budget Committee, where it passed unanimously. Mr. Rick Sieber, the primary liaison person from the Administrative Planning and Budget Committee, and Mr. Ken Valosky, Vice President for Finance, reviewed the key assumptions of the revised budget with the rest of the Senate. Because of the large graduating class, the University will be down 144 students for the ’05-’06 school year, becoming significantly closer to the goal for a total of 6,150 full-time day students. There is expected to be little change in the number of part-time and graduate school students.

The cost of studying at Villanova University is expected to rise for the incoming freshman class about 4 percent for tuition, 2.5 percent for room, and 2 percent for board. Unreserved financial aid will be up 7.1 percent while all forms of financial aid will be up 6.4 percent.

The new budget allows for the filling of 36 new teaching positions, eight full-time positions and 28 non-tenured positions.

The budget committee also discussed its plan to meet with the officers of the Student Government Association (SGA) at the beginning of each term to discuss the budget process so that the SGA can take a larger role in the budget.

During the standing committee reports, the Academic Policy Committee spoke about the legal requirements for the release of academic information. Students wishing to receive letters of recommendation from professors will now have to sign a form allowing the professors to discuss the student’s academic record. These forms will become available through the University website.

This committee also discussed putting together a more formal policy for the dealing with intellectual property; however, in the last ten years, only two possible patents have come up in which a decision on intellectual property has needed to be made.

During the section for new business, senior Frank Brogna, SGA liaison to the Senate, requested a student report to be added to the standing agenda before explaining what changes have recently occurred student life.

These changes include a National Security concentration that has been added to the Political Science major; four classes will have to be completed in this discipline to receive the concentration. It is Brogna’s hope that this concentration will make University students more appealing when applying for jobs through the national government.

The SGA is also asking the faculty, through the Senate, to release a formal statement regarding the Dr. Ener memorial, since the issue has received attention from national media. It was decided that a request for a formal request must be submitted to the chair in writing before a statement can be written up.