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Governance Minutes Archive

September 11, 1990


                              SEPTEMBER 11, 1990




  PRESENT:  Susan Asselin, Robin Ball, Allison Ballew, Virgil Cook, Mona

            Gillis Edwards, Doris Evans, Joan Kalnitsky-Aliff, Muriel Flynn,

            Randy Grayson, Jane Harrison, Jeannie Hiller, Melissa Holland,

            Michele Holmes, Pat Hyer, Mike Lambur, Kathy Lewis, Pat Morris,

            Cornel Morton, Barbara O'Neal, Nancy Simmons, Wayne Speer, Glenn



  ABSENT:   Alan Bayer, Paula Dail, Mark Flora, Dennis Jones, Chris Tayloe


  Cornel Morton called the meeting to order at 2:10 p.m.




      Cornel Morton initiated the meeting by inviting members to introduce

      themselves.  He then explained that the University Committee on Equal

      Opportunity/Affirmative Action reports to the President through the Of-

      fice of EO/AA.  Dr. Morton also informed members that minutes and

      agenda items/attachments would be distributed at least 7 working days

      prior to each meeting.




      The agenda was adopted as distributed.




      The minutes from the meeting of May 29, 1990 were approved as distrib-





      o   Dr. Morton announced that the 1990-91 "Breakfast With . . ." series

          will begin on Friday, September 14th, with a program entitled "The

          Changing University:  Campus Climate, Classroom Climate, and Cur-

          riculum."  The speakers, Drs. Johnnella Butler and John Walter,

          from the University of Washington, are visiting campus by invita-

          tion of the Curriculum Transformation Project.


      o   Dr. Morton then noted an upcoming forum on racism, "Racism 101," on

          Thursday, September 27th, at the Wesley Foundation, from 6:00 to

          9:00 p.m.


      o   October 5th is the date for a teleconference on the "Campus Re-

          sponse to Racial Harassment."  Jointly sponsored by the Virginia

          Tech Police Department, the Division of Student Affairs, Campus

          Ministers, and the EO/AA Office, this program is scheduled from

          1:00 - 3:00 p.m. at the Wesley Foundation.


      o   Dr. Morton announced a second teleconference, "Effective Approaches

          to Campus Security," on November 15th, from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m., at

          the Wesley Foundation.


      o   Dr. Morton also informed committee members that the 1990-91

          "Faculty/Administrator Black Student Mentor Program" will be inau-

          gurated with a reception on Monday, September 24th, from 5:00 to

          6:30 p.m., at the CEC.  He invited EO/AA Committee members to par-

          ticipate in the program and to attend the opening reception.  Al-

          though the program is designed to provide mentoring for black

          freshmen, Dr. Morton added that he hoped the program could be ex-

          panded to include juniors and seniors.






          In the absence of co-chairs Pat Hyer (who arrived late) and Anne

          Zajac, Dr. Morton reported that much of the work done by the com-

          mittee last year involved updating the sexual harassment policy

          statement, which required extensive modification.  It is expected

          that the policy will be endorsed this year.




          Patricia Morris reminded committee members that during the past

          year her subcommittee had reevaluated the "Year 2000" report and

          its accompanying recommendations. She added that this year's sub-

          committee agenda includes examining and editing the exit survey for





          Dr. Cook reported that during 1989-90 the subcommittee drafted the

          document, "Guidelines for Employees with Disabilities."  He noted

          that in spite of budget cuts an elevator will be installed in Price

          Hall.  Dr.  Cook also mentioned the purchase of a $13,000 reading

          machine for Newman Library to replace an unreliable older model. In

          terms of this year's agenda, Dr. Cook remarked that with the pas-

          sage of the Federal "Rights of the Disabled" act, the university

          would probably have to consider more affirmative action guidelines

          for the disabled. Dr. Cook asked individuals who were interested in

          serving on this subcommittee to contact him at 1-6568.






          Dr. Morton reported that the annually completed plan contains

          Tech's affirmative action goals -- primarily targeted at black fac-

          ulty, staff and students. It was submitted to SCHEV on June 26,

          1990, but has not yet generated any response from Richmond.  Dr.

          Morton distributed a copy to each of the subcommittee chairs and

          asked that they share the document with their committee members.

          He explained that excessive copying charges prohibited distributing

          it to every EO/AA Committee member.




          Dr. Morton explained that the proposal for a Civility Statement

          stems from Secretary of Education, James Dyke's efforts to improve

          campus climate in Virginia.  Secretary Dyke issued an announcement

          during a recent meeting with SCHEV indicating that he was concerned

          about racial incidents, homophobia, and other discriminatory prob-

          lems occurring on Virginia's campuses. In response, he asked that

          SCHEV issue broad guidelines to colleges and universities on how to

          go about developing a civility statement.  Dr. Morton stated his

          intention to form an inclusive committee of campus/community people

          to talk about how Virginia Tech can respond to this mandate.  Dr.

          Morton then reviewed some of initiatives already in place at Tech

          that have addressed the issue of campus climate.  He anticipates

          that the requested "statement" would develop into more of a plan on

          how Virginia Tech is going to address the issue of harassment.  Dr.

          Morton invited individuals who are interested in working on this

          plan to contact him.





          Dr. Morton explained that the affirmative action plan update re-

          quired by the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs is due

          on January 1, 1991.  A technical assistance meeting with OFCCP of-

          ficials in Richmond is scheduled for October 17, 1990, to discuss

          preparation of the Plan.




          Dr. Morton explained that although the budget is still "unsettled"

          at this time, it is expected that $100,000 will be cut from the

          $600,000 university-wide account.  Dr. Morton noted that these

          funds support a wide variety of activities and are shared among nu-

          merous divisions on campus including the Admissions' Office, the

          Graduate School, Personnel Services, the Dean of Students Office,

          and the Office of Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action. In discuss-

          ing ways to minimize the impact of these budget reductions, Dr.

          Morton noted that the EO/AA Committee could be an effective lobby-

          ing power on campus, as it reports directly to the President. Dr.

          Morton also spoke briefly about the need for greater committee vis-

          ibility on campus.




          Mike Lambur inquired about the role of EO/AA Committee members on

          campus.  For example, how does the committee communicate with their

          co-workers or constituency groups?  Robin Ball responded that the

          subcommittee evaluating the mission, purpose and composition of the

          EO/AA Committee had discussed this and other related issues and

          would present its findings at the October meeting. Jane Harrison

          asked if she, as a committee member, could bring before the group

          the concerns of her co-workers?  Dr. Morton responded that any item

          deemed relevant by a committee member could be included on the

          agenda. Discussion ensued about ways to achieve greater campus vis-

          ibility, as well as the need to take a more pro-active planning

          role.  Dr. Morton suggested, for example, that the Committee con-

          sider sponsoring relevant seminars or workshops.  He also advocates

          greater SPECTRUM coverage as a means of highlighting the Commit-

          tee's activities. One of the ideas generated by the subcommittee,

          as reported by Mona Edwards, is to stage "mini-forums" so that any

          individual on campus could express his or her concerns.  Dr.

          Morton requested that prior to the October meeting each of the sub-

          committees discuss and recommend the ways and means for providing

          to the larger community both the knowledge and the wherewithal to

          make concerns known to the Committee.


          Discussion then ensued about the possibility of holding a retreat

          for new and ongoing committee members.  Dr. Morton responded that

          there were no current plans to do so, but added that a lunchtime

          meeting would be arranged to educate new members about the function

          of the EO/AA Office and Committee.


          Dr. Hyer noted that hiring goals for women and other minorities

          were not included in the SCHEV Affirmative Action Plan.  Dr. Morton

          indicated that the SCHEV AA Plan responds primarily to the Virginia

          desegregation plan which includes African-Americans as its princi-

          ple focus.  The OFCCP AA Plan, due January 1, 1990, does include

          women and other minorities


          Dr. Morton indicated that he would like to attend the first meeting

          of each of the three subcommittees and asked that he be notified

          when they are to be held.  He also informed members that he would

          distribute a list of 1990-91 EO/AA Committee members at the next




  The meeting adjourned at 3:30 p.m.



  Respectfully submitted,





  Laurie S. Good

  Executive Secretary


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