System News May 2016
- Board of Regents Meeting Will Feature Budget, Strategic Pathways and Single-Accreditation Discussions
- Regents Discuss Possible Changes to Public Testimony
- UA President Jim Johnsen announces decision on UAF Chancellor, Next Steps in Single Accreditation and Strategic Pathways Review
- Prof. Bruno Kappes Receives Bullock Prize from the University of Alaska Foundation
- May 29, 2016 is national 529 College Savings Day
- The Capitol Report May 19, 2016
- RACI Model Applied to SW Transformation Decisions
- Interim CHRO Announced
Board of Regents Meeting Will Feature Budget, Strategic Pathways and Single-Accreditation Discussions
President Johnsen will present additional details at the full meeting of the Board of Regents in Anchorage June 2-3 on next steps for the Strategic Pathways expedited review that will begin in June, as well as seek board approval to begin exploration of single accreditation for the university. Budget reductions from declining state general fund allocations will result in a $75 million reduction to the university's operating budget (including unfunded fixed cost increases) beginning July 1. MORE...
Regents Discuss Possible Changes to Public Testimony
During the Board of Regents’ Planning and Development Committee meeting on May 24, regents discussed options for community members to provide public testimony to the Board of Regents during its meetings. Also discussed, were options that could allow business and community members to talk with the regents outside regular business hours. It was suggested that audio public testimony, similar to the system used by the Legislature, would be the best option. Supporting the effort were resolutions from the Faculty Alliance, System Governance Council and USUAA urging the regents to expand testimony options.
Regents strongly expressed that it is important for people off the main campuses to have access to the board. It was also noted that audio testimony is familiar to individuals who testify during the Alaska legislative process. MORE...
Johnsen announces decision on UAF Chancellor, Next Steps in Single Accreditation and Strategic Pathways
In a broad sweeping announcement outlining major budget-driven decisions, University of Alaska President Jim Johnsen said that he will initiate an expedited review of three academic and four administrative programs this summer through the Strategic Pathways process, forego appointing a new chancellor for the University of Alaska Fairbanks and immediately pursue next steps toward single accreditation for the university.
“Our greatest enemy is uncertainty. Uncertainty with respect to our budget from the state and how those impending cuts will affect our mission,” he said. “With strong guidance and support from the Board of Regents, these decisions will provide direction for our path forward and a degree of certainty in an otherwise uncertain world.” MORE...
RACI Model Applied to Final SW Transformation Decisions
The RACI model has been assigned for all the SW Transformation Decisions. Download a PDF updated May 24, 2016 for details on who is Responsible, Accountable, Consulted, Informed for each recommendation.
Interim CHRO Announced
With the retirement of Ardith Lynch, Tara Ferguson has been named Interim CHRO effective May 6, 2016. Interim CHRO Ferguson will serve in this capacity until the arrival of Incoming CHRO Keli Hite McGee on June 13, 2016 .
Prof. Bruno Kappes Receives Bullock Prize from the University of Alaska Foundation
Prof. Bruno Kappes, director of the Anchorage Biofeedback Clinic and a 30-plus year University of Alaska Anchorage psychology professor, was recently selected by the University of Alaska Foundation Trustees as the recipient of its most prestigious award -- the Edith R. Bullock Prize for Excellence.
Kappes has been a pioneer in delivering psychology courses. He has taught more than 10,000 UAA students since 2000 alone. Aside from Kappes teaching duties, he has presented international lectures on the topic and also is an active researcher. His early research at UAA assisted with the protocols and medical treatment of cold-injured patients at the Thermal Unit of Providence Hospital in Anchorage. His current research focus “insanity and the death-qualified jury” has proved important in Alaska’s courtrooms as well. MORE...
The Capitol Report May 19, 2016
By Chris Christensen
Associate Vice President for State Relations
The Second Regular Session of the 29th Alaska State Legislature ended yesterday just before midnight. It was the 121st legislative day, the session limit mandated by the Alaska Constitution. The constitution gives lawmakers the option of having one 10-day extension, if two-thirds of the House and two-thirds of the Senate vote to extend. While the Senate voted for the extension, the House fell short by one vote.
The operating budget and the capital budget did not pass before adjournment, nor did any of the deficit reduction bills proposed by Governor Walker. Because of that, the governor has called the legislature into special session in Juneau, beginning on Monday at 11:00 a.m. Special sessions may last up to 30 days and are limited to specific topics, but there is no limit on the number of special sessions that can be called. You can view the governor’s proclamation and the list of topics that are on the special session agenda here: http://akleg.gov/docs/pdf/29special/29th-special_4.pdf
As noted in the last Capitol Report, the legislature needed to access funds from state savings accounts to cover the estimated $4 billion deficit next year. The preferred method is to take the money from the Constitutional Budget Reserve (CBR), which requires a three-quarters vote of the Senate and a three-quarters vote of the House. MORE....
May 29, 2016 is national 529 College Savings Day
by Lael Oldmixon
Today’s families have a tax advantaged way to save for their child’s education through 529 college savings plan accounts. When our first child was born we opened a UA College Savings Plan account with his Permanent Fund Dividend by checking “Yes” on question 6 of the PFD application. This is a simple way to save and as a bonus, a contributor is randomly selected each year to win a $25,000 scholarship account which can be used at almost any college, university, technical or trade school in the US.
May 29, 2016 is national 529 College Savings Day. The UA College Savings Plan is celebrating this date with college savings plans across the country. As the director of Alaska’s college savings program, I would like to invite you to reflect on the importance of saving for college. MORE....