Bloomberg School of Public Health
Members Present:Drs. William Brody, Robert Black, Ron Brookmeyer, William Eaton, Diane Griffin, John Groopman, Bernard Guyer, Martha Hill, Robert Lawrence, Jonathan Links, Roger McMacken, Noel Rose, Jonathan Samet, Alfred Sommer, Donald Steinwachs, James Yager, Jonathan Weiner and Scott Zeger; and Ms. Robin Fox, staff.
Member Absent: Dr. Edward Miller.
Guests: Drs. Thomas Burke, Sharon Krag, Ellen MacKenzie, and Cecile Pickart; Ms Diane Glover; and Mr. Herbert Hansen.
Meeting Convened: President William Brody convened the meeting at 3:00 p.m.
Approval of the Minutes: Minutes of the 868th meeting on January 30, 2003 were approved.
Remarks by the President
President Brody commented on a joint press conference held with other universities in support of continued State funding. Presently, Johns Hopkins receives significant support from the State, and would be adversely affected by a sudden decline in this source of support. It is not yet clear what will happen to these funds in the proposed budget, but Dr. Brody commented that the University is making efforts to retain this support and will continue to follow this issue closely.
Dr. Brody remarked that the University is projecting deficits due to declines in the stock market, endowment and State aid. This will present challenges and require continued prudent budgeting. However, fund-raising efforts have remained successful, particularly at the Bloomberg School of Public Health.
The University's acquisition of the Mount Washington properties were reviewed, and there are plans to relocate several Hopkins operations to this site.
Remarks by the Dean
Dr. Sommer announced that Dr. Noel Rose has agreed to chair the Committee to Review the Department of Mental Health.
Report of the Faculty Senate
Dr. Links provided a short history of the Faculty Senate's development of a series of "white papers" that grew out of the School's 2000 Strategic Plan. A small faculty committee has been appointed to review in detail the recommendations of the "Faculty Balance of Effort" which were presented at the February 20, 2003 joint Faculty Senate/Committee of the Whole meeting. The faculty committee focused on the distribution of faculty responsibilities and compensation. Dr. Sommer commented that the issue for the faculty appears to be the assurance of equity in allocation of burdens and resources, rather than provision of more resources.
Report of the Committee to Review the Department of Epidemiology
Drs. MacKenzie and Burke joined the Advisory Board. Dr. MacKenzie, chair of the Committee to Review the Department of Epidemiology, acknowledged the work of the Review Committee members and especially Ms Amanda Cline, staff of the Committee. The Committee met 18 times, and met with Dr. Samet, with Epidemiology faculty and students, and with administrators and other chairs.
Dr. Samet has been chair since 1994. Since that time, Dr. MacKenzie reported that the Department has grown in size and complexity, with substantial increases in the size of the student body, and in the number of professorial and non-professorial faculty. She commented on the central educational role played by the Department in the School, and, despite a few gaps, on the strong educational program of the Department. The faculty and students of the Department also report high morale.
Dr. MacKenzie commented that the Department faces a number of challenges in managing its growth in an increasingly complex field. Among the concerns expressed by the Review Committee are: the centralized and unclear nature of the decision process in the Department; the lack of clarity and uniformity among the 11 concentration areas with respect to authority, identity, role in the department, size, and level of activity; and lack of shared vision for or discussion about the future of the Department.
The Review Committee provided two strong recommendations which also were included in the Department's Self Study in 2001. The first recommendation is to appoint a deputy chair, or possibly several associate chairs. While a Faculty Advisory Committee has been convened, its role in the governance of the Department is unclear. The second recommendation is for the Department to develop a strategic plan that will address several topics, including: strengthening translation of epidemiology research to practice (including the current lack of courses in applied areas, and better distinguishing between a DrPH theses and PhD dissertation); careful planning for the size and distribution of the student body that includes identifying support for a greater proportion of students; and distribution of faculty across the different ranks, particularly in light of the revised Faculty PPM. Dr. MacKenzie noted that the Department has reached the 35% ceiling for non-tenure professorial faculty. Decisions about faculty recruitment (areas, titles and ranks) should be examined as part of this important deliberation.
Dr. Samet thanked Dr. MacKenzie and the Committee for their thoughtful efforts, and agreed that the Department faces the same issues related to growth and increasing complexity as does the entire field of Epidemiology. While the discipline of Epidemiology has many common tools, it's goals and subcultures can be heterogeneous. Dr. Samet recognized the substantial growth of the Department over the last 10 years, and agreed that its administration/organization has not kept pace. In addition, a number of junior faculty would like to take on leadership roles in the Department.
Dr. Samet agreed that a deputy chair appointment would be beneficial, and is considering whether to conduct an external search for this position. He noted that each of the 11 areas of concentration has prepared a strategic plan, although they have not yet been shared widely. Dr. Sommer commented that Dr. Samet will return to the Advisory Board in a year to report on the progress of the Department in carrying out the recommendations of the Review Committee, and further commented that issues identified by a department during its self study are often resolved before or during the departmental review.
After further discussion, a motion was made to accept the report of the Committee to Review the Department of Epidemiology, and to thank Dr. MacKenzie and the Committee for providing a number of useful recommendations to the Department of Epidemiology and to the Advisory Board. The motion was approved by the Advisory Board.
Proposed change in PhD residency requirement
Dr. Krag reviewed two proposed changes in the PPM for the PhD program with respect to the residency requirement. The first change is to extend the allowable time between completion of a masters degree and entrance into a doctoral program while being able to "use" the masters residency to satisfy the doctoral residency requirement. Previously, masters program completion and doctoral degree enrollment were required to be uninterrupted. The proposed change would allow up to one academic year between completion of the masters degree and enrollment in the doctoral degree while satisfying the residency requirement.
The second change proposed is to allow full-time residency requirement to be documented by a department or program chair, rather than it being documented solely by completion of four 16-credit terms of consecutive enrollment. This change is expected to apply to a very small number of full- time employees who are fully engaged in their graduate studies, and all documentation will be reviewed by Dr. Krag.
Dr. Krag commented that the proposed changes are consistent with the Johns Hopkins University Graduate Board rules governing PhD programs, and will decrease the number of "exceptions" requested by the School. The Committee on Academic Standards has approved the proposed changes, and departmental academic coordinators have had the opportunity to review and comment on them as well.
After discussion, the proposed changes to the residency requirement of the PhD PPM were approved by the Advisory Board.
Request to reinstate a doctoral student in Health Policy and Management
Dr. Steinwachs commented that the Department of Health Policy and Management is working to improve oversight and tracking of their doctoral students. He provided a brief history of a student who had requested a third extension in the time allowed for completion of his doctoral program. The request was considered by the Committee on Academic Standards, which denied it after the student did not meet his own time lines for completion of his degree outlined in the two earlier requests. Dr. Steinwachs commented that the Chair of the Committee on Academic Standards was supportive of bringing this request to the Advisory Board.
The Advisory Board considered a number of possible outcomes. A motion was made to send the request back to the Committee on Academic Standards for reconsideration based on any new information that may be available. This motion was approved by the Advisory Board and will be communicated to the Committee on Academic Standards.
Request for a tenure-track position in the Department of Epidemiology
Dr. Samet reviewed his request for a tenure-track position for a clinician to join the Infectious Diseases Epidemiology program. Since similar recruitments are planned in the Departments of International Health and in Molecular Microbiology and Immunology, Dr. Sommer asked the three departments to coordinate their searches.
Request for two tenure-track positions arising from one search in the Department of Health Policy and Management
Dr. Steinwachs reported that since the Advisory Board approved a tenure-track position in mass media/health communications, a search was conducted that yielded two top-notch candidates. One candidate has been recruited successfully, and the Department would like to recruit the second candidate to help develop a critical mass of faculty in the area of health communications. These faculty will be expected to collaborate with the Center for Communications Programs.
There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 4:45 p.m.
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