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The independent news website of The Kent Stater & TV2

KentWired

The independent news website of The Kent Stater & TV2

KentWired

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Faculty Senate reelects chair, creates new senator positions

The K is located on the universitys Risman Plaza.
Jade Lilly James
The “K” is located on the university’s Risman Plaza.

Faculty Senate reelected chair Tracy Laux during elections at its April meeting Tuesday.

Laux, who is a senior lecturer of mathematical sciences, will remain faculty senate chair for another three-year term. He ran as the sole candidate for the position.

“I have always had a sense of wanting to contribute to the greater good in whatever I’ve been involved in,” he said. “I found I can make a greater wide-spread contribution to not only faculty but students, their parents, administration with a more active role in the faculty senate. That’s what drives me to do this.”

Also reelected was vice chair Ann Abraham, an associate professor of chemistry and secretary Edward Dauterich, an English professor, was reelected as secretary. 

Laux introduced a motion to add new faculty senators for colleges without resident faculty such as the Honors College, Graduate College and University College. Faculty at said colleges come from other departments to teach courses rather than being employed by the specific college itself.

“This was causing problems because University College, for example, now has their own courses,” he said. “Whenever you have curriculum, you have to have a faculty advisory body saying ‘this can be a course, this can’t be a course.’”

Provost Melody Tankersley delivered plans for addressing the university’s budget struggles, asking for faculty and university employees to give feedback on ways the university could streamline operations.

During the February meeting, President Todd Diacon said the university will need to reduce spending in the 2025 fiscal year by $17 million to stay under budget.

“Clearly colleges in Ohio and across the nation are facing financial difficulties,” she said. “Kent State is not immune.”

Tankersley cited Cleveland State University’s $40 million budget deficit as motivation for the university to reduce spending.

“Where we have the opportunity to streamline, we must,” she said.

The Faculty Senate approved revisions to the university’s transfer of graduate credit for the Fall 2024 semester. The changes were brought by Vice President for Enrollment Management Sean Broghammer.

The motion included changes to the policy’s language. One change included not completely accepting a class’s credit hours from another institution if it exceeds the credit hours of a similar course at Kent State. 

David Dees, a newly elected senator and associate professor of cultural foundations gave an update on changes to Kent Core general education requirements.

Dees said the Ohio Department of Education and officials from other universities contacted him saying they are not ready to approve certain interdisciplinary courses related to Kent Core, the university’s required general education courses for students. 

Interdisciplinary courses “combine coursework from several traditional disciplines, with a common factor that reflects the focus of the program,” according to the university’s website

Despite this, Dees said he holds Kent Core community groups during the month of April for faculty and staff, with the hope of receiving feedback on proposed changes to Kent Core.

“We want to move forward, but in a way that is more deliberate and involved,” he said.

Michael Neenan is a beat reporter. Contact him at [email protected]

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About the Contributors
Michael Neenan, General Assignment Reporter
Michael is a senior journalism major with a public relations minor. He works as a reporter, covering topics from sports to university administration. Contact him at [email protected]
Jade Lilly James, Photographer
Jade is a photographer at KentWired. She is a freshman communications major. Jade has a huge passion for Sports photography and media management, and she cannot wait to further her experiences and career in the thing she loves. Contact her at [email protected]

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