Admissions policy changes get review

The Senate Executive Committee, or SEC, wants to review a report recommending a number of changes to enrollment and admissions policies, before University president Michael Hogan begins the implementation process.

The enrollment management report includes recommendations that the three University campuses create enrollment goals, redesign freshman scholarships to increase competition, apply for membership into the Common Application and create links between the three campuses to ease the transfer process.

These recommendations, 21 in total, were made in order to improve the selection of applicants, particularly underrepresented and out-of-state students.

A committee within the University Senates Conference — which is comprised of senate representatives from the three campuses — formed to discuss the report and potentially act on it.

However, Nicholas Burbules, University Senates Conference representative, urged the SEC to create a task force to discuss the recommendations before the conference has acted on them.

Burbules said he thinks Hogan wants to start implementing all the recommendations as soon as possible. He added that it is important for the Urbana senate to consider the possible effects on the campus.

Burbules said this task force would consist of chairs from several senate committees, such as the Admissions Committee and Educational Policy Committee. The task force would be responsible for presenting a unified statement on behalf of the senate, he said.

“Campus governance has to look at it, and in my view, act on it,” Burbules said, calling the recommendations potentially damaging to the campus. “I’m really concerned about these recommendations.”

However, there are still some unknowns.

Burbules said there is no timetable for when the conference will act on this, but reinforced his impression that Hogan wants to start implementing it quickly. He said Hogan could take the next steps as soon as the end of this semester.

“If we knew that (the potential appointment) would go to the Board of Trustees on Dec. 2., I would personally recommend having a special meeting of the senate,” he said.

The SEC contends that Hogan promised them last semester that he would consult them about any decisions. In addition, the committee said that it expects to receive input from Hogan on the recommendations.

Burbules said the executive committee “is going to regret it” if it does not act now.