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Minutes: November 11, 2009




                  3 p.m., Wednesday, November 11, 2009

                  School of Medicine Administration, Board Room 103

PRESENT: Drs. Abuav, Ahn, Armstrong, Barker, Brayton, Carroll, Chou, Cooke, Fine, Gottesman, Herman, Ishii, Matunis, Meffert, Molinaro, Nyhan, Pavlovich, Reading, Regan, Resar, Schramm, Shapiro, Wong, Mr. Ruzevick, Mss. Fairman,  Foy, and Matthys.

ABSENT: Drs. Bastian, Chuck, Comfort, Cromwell, Goldstein, Green, Leahy, McCarthy, Stivers, Tis, Tufaro, Williams, and Wolfgang, Messrs. Bicket and Mandell, Ms. Nguyen.

GUESTS: Drs. Fivush, Sterni, and Zeger, Mr. Steinbach.

I.  Minutes

The minutes of the October 21, 2009 meeting were approved.   It was noted the date of the January 20, 2010 meeting has been changed to January 6, 2010 to accommodate the Provost’s schedule.

II. 2009 Report from the Joint Oversight Committee on Faculty Development and Gender – Dr. Barbara Fivush

                  An outcome of the June 2005 Committee on Faculty Development and Gender (CFD&G) was the formation of a Joint Oversight Committee (JOC) with representatives from the Medical School Council and Women’s Leadership Council.  The charge of the JOC was to oversee implementation of recommendations and to re-survey the faculty in three years to monitor progress. 

                  Of the nine recommendations in the 2005 report, progress was made on the following:  1) establishment of the Joint Oversight Committee and 2) newly created Assistant Dean for Faculty Development and Equity position; 3) newly created Office of Women in Science and Medicine; 4) yearly review and analysis of faculty salaries; 5) improved communication to the faculty on support tools; 5) institution of faculty-wide sexual harassment training; 7) development of online and in-person exit interviews; 8) a faculty survey re-administered in three years; and 9) mandate annual reviews of all faculty.

                  The 2007 survey found an improved work environment and evidence of general improvement in sexual harassment; an increased number of faculty reported positive experiences with mentors, particularly with their division directors.  There was improved representation of female faculty on Promotions and Reappointment Review Committees.  Of faculty returning their appointment letters, less than 7% reported not receiving an annual review.  On the negative side, there continues to be salary disparity by gender despite ongoing yearly evaluations.  The number of female department directors has not changed and there continues to be department and director meetings scheduled outside the 8a.m – 5p.m. time frame.  There continues to be work/life balance issues and gender differences in time to promotion in clinical departments.  Faculty who leave cite non-competitive compensation, lack of opportunities for professional growth, and work/life issues as major issues.

                  The 2007 report made several recommendations including the following: The institutional leadership should 1) continue to promote a culture of equity; 2) achieve and maintain salary equity; 3) continue to promote the careers of women faculty; 4) reduce barriers to inclusion; 5) target resources for recruitment and retention; 6) expand institutional education about sexual harassment; 7) conduct exit interviews; 8) Faculty Oversight Committee should continue; 9) progress should be monitored by a faculty survey on a three year cycle.

                  Dr. Fivush summarized the many significant strides made, but noted there is still much to accomplish.  She specifically mentioned the salary inequity for female faculty in some departments, the promotion rates for female faculty in clinical departments, and the impact on work/life balance by scheduling of important department/division meetings outside the regular 8-5 work schedule.

                  Dr. Fivush also presented data from a AAMC benchmarking study which showed women are differentially represented in the lower faculty ranks and under-represented in leadership positions.

                  Dr. Fivush responded to several questions relating to work/life issues and salary equity.

                  Dr. Armstrong thanked Dr. Fivush for her presentation and for her leadership in addressing difficult issues.

                  Dr. Armstrong asked for recommendations from Basic Science Departments for membership on the Joint Oversight Committee.

III. Update on the BERS project (Best Environment for Research and Scholarship) – Dr. Scott Zeger

                  Dr. Zeger presented an initiative the Provost’s office is developing to provide improved administrative support for principal investigators.  The initiative will link specific tools and information that support PIs in one place on a faculty dashboard.

                  Dr. Zeger outlined results of a recent survey in which 40-50% of PIs reported fair or poor administrative support for grant preparation, submission, and management.  An increased percentage rated as fair to poor research support for data management and analysis.

                  It was noted the skill set of staff has to transition to a higher level as administrative responsibilities shift from PI to administrators.  Inadequate administrative support discourages PIs from competing for larger multidisciplinary grants.  Improved access to the scientific infrastructure is necessary to support research.  Additional support for CORE directors and availability of consultants on a fee for service basis is part of the initiative.

                  Dr. Zeger, in response to questions, noted the role of the Welch Library as key to information resources.

                  Dr. Armstrong thanked Dr. Zeger for his presentation and commented on the importance of this initiative in supporting the research mission.

IV. Blue Book Changes – Dr. Laura Sterni

Dr. Sterni, Chair of the committee to review the part time faculty appointment and promotion document (Blue Book) presented two modifications that arose from discussions at an Advisory Board meeting subsequent to the Medical School Council’s approval of the document last academic year.


Change #1:  The two year required time period for a part time faculty member to be reviewed be removed from the document.  The new wording allows a faculty member, department or division director, or Dean’s Office to convene a review at any time, but does not require a formal review every two years.

Change #2: The requirement that the modifier “part time” be used whenever a faculty member makes reference to their faculty status in publications, curriculum vitae, and in self-identification in public representations be removed from the document.                 

The Medical School Council voted to approve both changes.  Dr. Armstrong thanked Dr. Sterni for her work and that of the part time committee in revising the document.

V. Other Business

                  There being no further business this meeting was adjourned at 4:45 p.m.

                                                                                                                              Respectfully submitted,

                                                                                                                              Mary E. Foy


Future Medical School Council meetings:

All meetings will be held in the School of Medicine Board Room (SOM 103), 3:00 to 5:00 p.m.



Dec. 9, 2009

Jan. 6, 2010 (Changed from January 20, 2010)

Feb. 17, 2010

Mar. 24, 2010

Apr. 21, 2010

May 26, 2010

June 23, 2010