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Inside Iowa State, a newspaper for faculty and staff, is published by the Office of University Relations.

December 3, 2004

P&S Council endorses college combination

by Anne Krapfl

By a vote of 28-2, with two members abstaining from the Dec. 2 vote, the Professional and Scientific Council supported the proposal to combine the colleges of Family and Consumer Sciences and Education. The council's motion includes two considerations:

  • An acknowledgement that, pending final approval at the university and board of regents level, many implementation details have yet to be determined.
  • A request that issues raised by P&S staff, including council members, be addressed when implementation gets under way.

The motion, with comments received by council president Kevin Kane attached, will be forwarded to President Gregory Geoffroy.

Council members generally were concerned about P&S positions likely to be eliminated in a combination. Associate FCS dean Suzanne Hendrich said the combination task force's best estimate is that one dean, two half-time associate dean, four or five P&S and two Merit positions would be eliminated in a new, combined college. Hendrich and Heidi Eichorn, fiscal officer for the College of Education and both members of the task force, attended the council meeting to answer questions.

Human Resource Services director Carla Espinoza, who also attends council meetings, said it's premature to announce details of how positions would be eliminated and new positions filled until the combination receives regent approval. She did say that, generally, current P&S employees in positions identified for elimination would be involved in "very narrow competitions" for similar positions in the new college.

"This would be a new college. I assume how you do business would be different," she said, explaining why job skills, not seniority or even past performance, should be key factors in who fills the positions in the new college.

That process would be detailed if the combination is approved and as implementation begins, she said.

In other business, assistant provost Ellen Rasmussen reported that the university has submitted to the office of the Board of Regents, State of Iowa, a mileage reimbursement proposal that would tie Iowa State's rate to the federal rate, as set by the Internal Revenue Service. The disparity between the current ISU (31 cents) and IRS (37.5 cents) rates is an ongoing issue particularly for ISU Extension field staff. Extension representatives on the council have requested a change for several years. It isn't known yet when the issue might be placed on the board's agenda.

The council's next meeting begins at 2 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 6, in the Memorial Union Pioneer Room. Council members will discuss and vote on a motion that endorses the Nov. 17 edition of Iowa State's 2005-2010 strategic plan. The council also will elect a president and first-time president-elect (replacing the vice president position.)