We meet regularly, approximately once per month, and we are also in regular communication with the Athletic Department and University administrators.
We usually deal with issues such as compliance, graduate rates, evolving NCAA rules, the relationship between the academic mission and athletics at the University, and the issue of communication between folks on both sides of the river.
We also occasionally confront more high profile and controversial issues. There have been three this year:
The Athletic Director succession has been discussed by others at this Senate meeting. I wish to comment on the other two issues here.
The earliest plans for the new donor-sponsored ALC focussed primarily on tutoring and learning services for student/athletes. A new venue for these services IS sorely needed, since the old venue is in very bad shape.
However, as a consequence of the ALC proposal, the IAC as well as other groups have pushed the administration to pay serious attention to tutoring and learning services for the student body as a whole.
Since the ALC building is to be donor-sponsored, the administration cannot completely determine the form it takes, and the services it provides. However, the plans for the ALC have changed to include some facilities for those who are not student/athletes, and discussions about the ALC have led to much more serious attention paid to learning services for the general student body.
We plan to monitor these developments.
The Task Force Report requires the Athletic Department to consult the IAC on a wide variety of scheduling changes for athletic events. At the November 2006 IAC meeting, the Athletic Department raised the issue of a proposed set of scheduling changes for Pac 10 football games during the next several years. These changes involve some Thursday night games, and as a consequence of such midweek games, it has been proposed to occasionally hold the Civil War game on the Saturday at the end of Dead Week.
The IAC discussed this proposal for around 12 minutes. While many of the members were not happy at all with the proposed changes, the promise that this would not occur more often than every 5 years or so persuaded us to approve it.
At the time of this discussion, no mention was made of Senate resolutions relevant to the issue. As Chair, I perhaps should have been aware of such resolutions, but I was not.
Given the ensuing campus debate on this issue, we plan to discuss the matter further at a future meeting. We solicit campus opinion on the question.
We are also now motivated to carefully archive all past Senate resolutions relevant to athletics. This task should be completed, and posted on a web site, by the end of February.
Jim Isenberg Chair of the IAC
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