Hey! The office of the Student Regent will be liveblogging here on the UC Regents meeting, from the UC Regents table! Follow the UC Regents meeting here for the most up to date information about the meeting! we’ll be talking about the blue and gold plan, midyear fee increase, project you can, the uc system, and more! Check out the agenda for the UC Regents meeting here! http://www.universityofcalifornia.edu/regents/regmeet/nov09.html
3:30 – The Regents meeting has just gone into closed session! Sorry, no more updates for now, or I will get sued for bad things! Sorry! See you all soon! At the same time – I can definitely hear the students protesting outside.
3:05 – Chancellor White (Highlander) talking about diversity at UCR. Riverside is crazy good at diversity, 5th in the nation in ethnic diversity by u.s. news and world report! They’ve also created learning communities “like a cohort model” that has boosted freshmen retention by 4%, for Latin@/Chican@/Raza, it’s by 8-10%. Nice! UC Riverside is also the first to apply and win a Hispanic Serving Institution grant from the Federal government, which is great to hear! Chancellor White made a great point, that its not just about numbers diversity, but also about understanding diversity, ethnic and otherwise, in an intellectual arena – a critically thinking and progressive atmosphere that permanents the culture of teaching and the campus climate.
3PM – Chancellor Block (Bruin) talking about diversity at the UCLA. From the low in 2006 of African American students, they’ve doubled their number of black students since then. However, African American students who are in the highest holistic ranks in the admission often refuse to come to UCLA – our ability to provide to scholarship support is not competitive with other schools. Privates and Ivies who can offer race-based scholarships and don’t have Prop 209 are the biggest competitors here, and they do the best. How UCLA is currently dealing with it is the African American Alumni Association which are raising funds for those scholarships. The concern here is the enrollment cuts and scholarship packages in front of the regents will cut significantly the African American students who will want to attend UCLA. Chancellor Block talks about an amazing pilot project – a public school that is partnered with LAUSD, UCLA, and the neighborhood, a pipeline for UCLA, in a dense Latin@/Raza/Chican@ neighborhood.
2:30PM – Subreport of Accountability on Diversity! There is a serious problem in the senior management group with ethnicity and gender diversity. A large portion of senior management group are white, and many over half are male. In faculty – we do reasonalby well in hiring Under Represented Minorities compared to the national pipline. in the STEM (math and science fields), we’re 2% above the national availability, in other areas, we’re 2-5% below. Depts are required to have affirmative action plans – diversity training for serach committee chairs at UCLA, training for dept. chairs and deans. For the first time, they are talking about campus climate talks, but that data is really weak and thin, admitted by Provost Pitts. Action steps towards campus climate, UCOP gives a shout out to “Safe Zone” peoples at Irvine! UC Riverside has just been designated as a “hispanic serving institution” by having a over 25% latino population, UC Davis used to do “education sunday” recruitment days at black churches.
Provost Pitts: Our undergrad rates for diversity is fairly rich, but gets not as good during professional or grad student levels. More diverse pool in the humanities, although social science members are definitely not as diverse . Low african american student populations all around, which is something which is really sad.
2:20PM – Retiree Health Benefit Program discussion happening. Another task force was formed by the president, similar to the one for the Retirement plan. Also local forums going around with that process as well. The accured liability on this program is 14.5b. UC is asking for the state to pay its fair share – i think we’re one of hte only state services who aren’t receiving any funding for this kind of program. Now onto the joint meeting between committee on education policy and long-range planning.
2PM – So just got back from lunch – the UC regents meeting is continuing into a discussion about the UC Retirement Plan. It’s a plan that is definitely been hurting from the economy – the market voilitiaty definitely affects its preformance. Contributions assumed for projections: starting July 1, 2011: Employer contribution increasing 2% a year, member contribution increasing 1% a year (until 5% levelled off).
So just to clarify the questions, the vote for the Regents was 11 yes, 1 no. the no vote was Jesse Bernal, who is the current Student Regent. I’m the student Regent-designate, and so I won’t be able to vote until next year. I was going to speak during the meeting about the fee increases, but had to step outside the room with the protest outside. Sorry about the confusion everybody!
The Academic Senate Recommendation to deal with UCRP’s current plan of contributions (which is woefully inadequate) is for the Regents to allocate funds over to UCRP to return it to fully funded status. President Yudof has created a taskforce with three goals 1) create market, competitive pay, 2) retainment of workforce and 3) sustainable retirement benefits. The task force had made 24 local forum presentations at all 10 campuses – create a communication structure and recruit state advocates to get state funding for these retirement benefits.
LA Times short article on what happened today with the fee increase vote: http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/wire/sns-ap-us-california-university-fees,0,7609392.story