Faculty Senate Highlights, AY 2022-2023

Faculty Senate Highlights, Academic Year 2022-2023


Aloha Leeward,


On behalf of the Leeward CC Faculty Senate, I would like to share with you some of the work of your faculty senators from the 2022-2023 academic year.  While last year was less dramatic and tumultuous than the year prior, it was still an active one, and one marked by important accomplishments and developments across many areas of the college and UH System.


Clarification of Assessment Requirements


Owing to messaging encouraging instructors to assess all Course Learning Outcomes (CLOs) for every course every semester (which contradicts Policy L5.210: Policy on Assessment), I invited Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs (VCAA), Keala Chock, to attend our Faculty Senate meeting on November 16, 2023, to clarify the discrepancy.  In short, messaging coming out of the Office of Planning, Policy and Assessment encouraging people to assess every CLO every semester was intended (though was not communicated) as a request to gather as much data as possible to test our new assessment management system, Anthology, in an effort to determine whether or not to renew our campus subscription, which ends in December 2023.  However, and as was clarified during our meeting, Policy L5.210 remains in effect, meaning that, minimally, instructors are still only required to assess all CLOs for a given course within a five year period.  If instructors would like to assist the process of evaluating the de/merits of Anthology, VCAA Chock welcomes more assessment data.  However, it is important to reiterate that assessment beyond the minimum requirements outlined in Policy L5.210 is NOT required and is completely voluntary.  Faculty Senate hopes this resolves any confusion on this issue.


Revisions to the College’s Integrated Planning and Budgeting Process and Timeline


Among Faculty Senate’s goals for the previous academic year was greater transparency, consistency, and fairness in campus decision making and operations, particularly where those practices impact faculty and where faculty involvement is protected by our 2021-2025 University of Hawai‘i Professional Assembly (UHPA) Collective Bargaining Agreement, UH policies (Regents and Executive), and our campus Shared Governance Policy (L1.201).  Key among these improvements were revisions to the college’s Integrated Planning and Budgeting Process.  Following missteps in last year’s campus resource request process (in which administration provided Faculty Senate only five working days to review, comment on, and recommend for approval or rejection administration’s prioritized list of campus resource requests), I made a motion for Campus Council to convene an ad hoc Planning and Budget Committee to improve the resource request process.  After a full calendar year of work, this committee produced a revised Integrated Planning and Budgeting Process and Timeline, rubrics for evaluating resource requests (in the areas of Operating Budget, Personnel, and Repair and Maintenance), and a revised Resource Request Template.  Certainly there is much to unpack here regarding the rationale for each of these documents.  However, in the interest of brevity, revisions to the Integrated Planning and Budgeting Process and Timeline had the primary goal of providing the college’s Authorized Governance Bodies (AGBs–namely, ASUH-Leeward, Campus Council, Faculty Senate, and Pūkoʻa no nā ʻEwa Council) more time to review, comment on, and make recommendations to approve or reject administration’s draft Institutional Priorities List (IPL, i.e., the list of campus resource requests prioritized according to various metrics of need).  Additionally, these documents have the goal of improving transparency in the resource request process.  The revised process now provides for a meeting between members of administration and representatives of Leeward’s AGBs to explain the former’s rationale for their ranking of campus resource requests.  In its creation of evaluation rubrics, the ad hoc sought to improve transparency in the criteria administrators use to prioritize campus resource requests–something that has never existed before and which has provoked years of confusion and complaints about the obscurity and inconsistency–and sometimes illogic–of the process.  While the above documents still require much refinement, they represent a beginning and a good faith attempt to improve the fairness and transparency of the process for everyone.  That said, I am enormously  grateful to the members of this ad hoc committee (comprised of the executives of our campus AGBs) whose hard work shepherded these improvements to fruition: Kelsie Aguilera, Summer Barrett, Momi Kamahele, U‘ilani Keli‘ikuli, Eiko Kosasa, Tina Lee, Chester Leoso, Wayde Oshiro, Poki Pokipala, and Alex Williamson.  Their work and commitment to the improvement of this process helps ensure transparent and meaningful shared governance at Leeward.


Faculty Senate Resolution 23.1


To help ensure equitable and respectful treatment of faculty, Faculty Senate approved Faculty Resolution (FSR) 23.1: Resolution Supporting Compensation for Non-Instructional Faculty for Labor Exceeding Their Position Descriptions at its last meeting on May 3, 2023.  The failure to compensate non-instructional faculty for labor exceeding their position descriptions (e.g., faculty who take on additional leadership roles as counseling unit heads, or as the coordinator of our Veterans Resource Center, on top of their other required duties) has been an issue that has been known, and yet has remained unresolved, for years.  But despite repeated requests from faculty leadership (especially, though not exclusively, in such units as Student Services) to meet with administration to resolve this issue over the last academic year, entreaties were either deferred or went completely unacknowledged.  While faculty labor concerns such as these generally lie in the purview of the University of Hawai‘i Professional Assembly (UHPA), the failure to acknowledge faculty requests to meet with our administrators lies within the jurisdiction of Faculty Senate, which has responsibilities for faculty-staff relations, as outlined in our Faculty Senate Charter, Article I, Section 2.E.  To ensure that our administration takes this issue seriously and moves toward a timely and fair resolution, Faculty Senate approved FSR 23.1.  As this resolution points out, failure to compensate faculty for work performed not only violates the terms of the 2021-2025 University of Hawai‘i Professional Assembly (UHPA) Collective Bargaining Agreement (which provides for compensation for faculty duties that exceed “that which is normally expected of an individual faculty member,” p. 73, R-06: Community College Teaching Equivalencies, III.B.2), it also undermines faculty morale and contradicts key elements of our college’s newly approved 2023-2029 Strategic Plan, particularly its principle of Equity (p. 3), its pillar of Thriving Employees (p. 4), and its tactic to “Create a Culture of Care & Appreciation.”  In a memo dated June 6, 2023, Chancellor Peñaloza provided administration’s response to FSR 23.1.  While Faculty Senate appreciates Chancellor Peñaloza’s acknowledgement of this issue, the memo is pablum and lacks critical details, such as requirements and guidelines for compensation, as well as a timeline for implementation.  That neither was provided is cause for concern and begs the reminder that equal pay should attend equal work.  That said, Faculty Senate, as well as the UHPA, will be monitoring progress toward fair compensation of our non-instructional faculty and hope that administration is sincere in its pledge to resolve this long-standing problem–and in the very near future.  Actions and time will demonstrate whether this hope is deserved or misplaced.  Imua!


Standing Committee Work


Much of the important, detailed, and time-consuming work of Faculty Senate is conducted by its committees, which work to identify and resolve problems across many areas of campus operations.  The following is an overview of our Faculty Senate standing committees’ accomplishment last year.


Academic and Institutional Support (AIS)


Chaired by Fa‘amaile Ickes, the AIS Committee last year looked to identify and resolve several problems related to our campus physical plant.  Thanks to the contributions of the AIS Committee, many of the concerns over leaky roofs in the MS and BS buildings were addressed in Summer and Fall 2022.  The AIS Committee also followed up on a number of persistent problems, such as high humidity and associated mold growth in both the Culinary Arts instructional areas and in the Educational Media Center (EMC), which have resulted in thousands of dollars of ruined equipment, foodstuffs, and other material resources over the years, not to mention the many hours lost spent mitigating damage.  Owing to regular meetings of the AIS Committee, Vice Chancellor of Administrative Services, Kelli Brandvold, is aware of these problems and will continue to explore means for resolving them.  Additionally, the AIS Committee brought to administration’s attention the dangerous conditions of the decking surrounding the Office of Continuing Education and Workforce Development (OCEWD).  Due to the use of ungalvanized nails that have corroded over the years, planks in the decking are buckling and/or have come loose, resulting in hazardous access to instructional and work spaces.  OCEWD is now planning to include repair of the decking in its next resource request.  Mahalo to Senator Ickes and the AIS Committee for their vigilance on these and other issues and for helping to safeguard our physical plant and the health and safety of our campus community.  Please read Senator Ickes’ annual report for a full accounting of the AIS Committee’s efforts.


Assessment Committee


The Assessment Committee, chaired by Michele Mahi, has continued its work with the Office of Planning, Policy and Assessment (OPPA) and Vice Chancellor Chock to develop a culture of assessment to help instructional faculty reflect on and improve their instructional practices.  Among its several endeavors, the Assessment Committee and OPPA distributed an Anthology User Survey to faculty at the end of the Fall 2022 semester, the results of which are captured in Senator Mahi’s February 8, 2023 report to Faculty Senate.  This committee also partnered with the Teaching Guidelines and Issues for Faculty (TGIF) Committee to host an Assessment Symposium on March 31, 2023, provided feedback on the draft Campus Assessment Plan, and worked to ensure that all courses are assessed within a five-year time frame per Policy L5.210: Policy on Assessment.  The last of these endeavors has resulted in a remarkable 99% assessment completion rate for courses over the last five years, an improvement of 55% and 13% over the results of AY 2020-2021 (44%) and AY 2021-2022 (86%), respectively.  Please see Senator Mahi’s annual report for additional information about the Assessment Committee’s accomplishments for the 2022-2023 academic year.


Budget and Planning Committee


The Budget and Planning Committee, co-chaired by William Castillo and Alyssa MacDonald, shared details from Vice Chancellor Brandvold’s Fiscal Year (FY) 2023 Operational Expenditure Plan (OEP) and FY 2022 Tuition and Fee Special Funds (TFSF) cash balances.  Additionally, and at Senators Castillo and MacDonald’s request, Vice Chancellor Brandvold has agreed to provide greater transparency and advance reporting of important financial figures beyond the OEP, such as cash balances, going forward.  For a review of the Budget and Planning Committee’s work, please see Senator Castillo and MacDonald’s annual report.


Curriculum Committee


The Curriculum Committee, chaired by Jiajia Garcia, was busy as usual.  As Senator Garcia recounts in her annual report, the Curriculum Committee processed proposals for 1 new course, 149 course modifications, 11 course deletions, 2 new programs, 19 program modifications, and 1 program deletion–a total of 183 proposals overall.  The Curriculum Committee also added a new field, 1.6: Review Date (Academic Year) to the program proposal form in the Kuali Student Curriculum Management (KSCM) system to help ensure that programs conduct a complete curriculum review at least once every five years per Policy L5.210: Policy on Assessment.  Additionally, beginning Fall 2023, the Curriculum Committee chair will manage KSCM using the Leeward Curriculum Chair account instead of the Chair’s personal account.  As a consequence, all notifications from KSCM will be sent to the designated Curriculum Committee Chair UH email account, leeccc [at] hawaii.edu (), enabling the Curriculum Committee to handle all curriculum-related correspondence using the designated email account and allowing all relevant records to be transferred to subsequent Curriculum Committee chairs.  This committee also fixed several bugs and interface issues to make KSCM more stable and user friendly.


Distance Education Committee


The Distance Education (DE) Committee, led by Co-Chairs Kelsie Aguilera and Cara Chang, and Vice Chair Evelyn Wong, has proven instrumental in providing important technical and pedagogical support for Leeward’s faculty, particularly as many courses and programs have migrated–and in some cases have remained–online in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.  Among the DE Committee’s notable accomplishments are collaboration with the Educational Media Center (EMC) to develop the DE Course R&R: (Re)design and Review (R&R) program to better support faculty in designing and delivering high-quality DE courses.  Additionally, representatives from the DE Committee–namely, Daniela Elliott, Rachael Inake, and Alex Williamson–participated on the UH Learning Management System (LMS) Review Committee to select and to provide critical feedback on a new LMS to replace Laulima, which is currently losing developers and is projected to discontinue critical updates–particularly security updates–that could put the UH community at risk.  Looking forward to the 2023-2024 academic year, the DE Committee will be reviewing DE processes to ensure compliance with new federal guidelines and Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC) policies and will be promoting the “Ready For Delivery” DE course recognition to acknowledge faculty who have aligned their DE courses with Leeward CC DE Guidelines.  For a complete list of DE Committee endeavors, please see Senator Aguilera and Chang’s annual report.


Elections Committee


Our Elections Committee, co-chaired by Matt Egami and Alyssa MacDonald, and joined by Igor Nikitin, facilitated both our annual at-large election of senators as well as the election of members of the Faculty Senate Executive Committee for the 2023-2024 academic year.  Due to the Election Committee’s continual efforts to improve operations, last year’s at-large election of senators was flawlessly executed–no odd numerical codes shot back via the faculty listserv after submitting a ballot, no inclusion of candidates who were not eligible to stand for election.  Mahalo to Matt, Alyssa, and Igor for their commitment of time and effort to maintaining the integrity of our elections process.  For more details on the Elections Committee’s endeavors, please refer to Senators Egami and MacDonald’s annual report.


Faculty Committee


Chaired by I-Chia Shih, the Faculty Committee investigated several issues of concern to faculty and students.  Among the Faculty Committee’s notable accomplishments were updates to the Student Complaint Process document (which required updated contact information), review of set up periods for UH Course Evaluation System (CES) surveys, and an exploration of interest in and the feasibility of a shortened semester.  The Faculty Committee’s review of the set up time for CES surveys followed a mistake in Fall 2022 in which faculty were not notified of a change in survey set up dates (which changed as CES survey dates moved back to its original two-week rather than one-week evaluation period in Fall 2022).  This failure to notify instructors of this change caused some instructors, particularly those teaching part-of-term (POT) courses, to miss the set up period, which resulted in some instructors only having the two campus universal questions on their evaluations.  An investigation revealed that this was the result of an oversight by a UH CES administrator–an oversight which has since been corrected.  Due to the complexities of managing CES evaluations for different types of courses across the UH System and across different terms (16-week and various POTs), the Faculty Committee determined that it would make more sense to retain the current set up period, with the caveat that the UH CES administrator will take greater care to alert faculty of any changes to the set up period going forward.  Additionally, due to a relatively shorter (compared to past years) winter recess and associated complaints of faculty burnout, the Faculty Committee investigated the feasibility of and interest in a shorter semester.  This is an extremely complex issue, which has implications not only for faculty but for students, especially those receiving financial aid and/or military benefits.  As part of their investigations into this issue, the Faculty Committee disseminated surveys to faculty and staff (conducted April 23-30) as well as to students (conducted May 1-12).  Please see results of the faculty/staff survey that Senator Shih has aggregated.  The results of the student survey are still forthcoming.   For a more complete context for the Faculty Committee’s investigations into this issue, and for more details on its other work, please see Senator Shih’s annual report.


General Education Committee


Aiyah.  Consistent with the 2021-2022 academic year, former General Education Committee chair (and now Dean of Leeward’s College of Arts and Sciences), Michelle Igarashi, was exceedingly busy during the 2022-2023 academic year.  To summarize a lengthy and complicated process, a second General Education Revisions team (which included Leeward’s own Natalie Wahl) met during Summer 2022 to revise the General Education Baseline Proposal distributed in Fall 2021.  In September 2022, the Revisions Team delivered to all campuses a revised General Education Baseline Proposal.  Following a briefing by select members of the Revisions Team in our own Faculty Senate on October 12, and after a series of town halls to more fully explain the details of, and to solicit feedback on, this revised baseline proposal, UH Vice President for Academic Strategy, Debora Halbert, convened a Conference Committee comprised of representatives from all UH campuses in an effort to develop a compromise document (i.e., curriculum) that would attempt to satisfy the needs and goals of all UH students, campuses, and programs.  Following an exceedingly compressed timeline for completion of the compromise document, several members joined together to produce the UH Multi-Campus Accord for General Education–a curriculum that Leeward’s Faculty Senate unanimously approved at its meeting of February 22 and which faculty senates across the UHCCs strongly supported.  Following claims by some members of the Conference Committee (all of which were from UH four-year campuses) that the committee had strayed from its stated guardrails and that representatives of the UH Community Colleges (UHCCs) had colluded to produce a curriculum that favored their constituents, Conference Committee Chair Peter Quigley resigned.  Shortly thereafter, Vice President Halbert disbanded the committee.  At the May 19 meeting of the All Campus Council of Faculty Senate Chairs (ACCFSC), Vice President Halbert determined that a cooling off period was in order and postponed indefinitely a vote on a revised General Education curriculum in UH faculty senates.  Since then, Vice President Halbert has not communicated any additional or future plans for revision of the General Education curriculum, leaving us in a holding pattern.  This is a general summary and timeline of the General Education redesign process last academic year.  For a more specific and comprehensive account, and for information about the accomplishments of Leeward’s Foundations and General Education committees, please see Dr. Igarashi’s annual report.  Mahalo, Dr. Igarashi, for your efforts to protect the interests of the UHCCs in general and of Leeward CC in particular, and best of luck in your new role as Leeward’s new Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.


Legislative Relations Committee


Chaired by Erika Molyneux, our Legislative Relations Committee monitored several bills impacting our campus and UH community, particularly HB300 HD1 SD1 CD1, which  appropriates funds for the operating and capital improvement budget of

the Executive Branch for fiscal years 2023-2024 and 2024-2025; SB1151 SD2 HD1 CD1, which exempts UHCC students who are enrolled in certificate programs from the requirement to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid each academic year to be considered eligible for the Hawai‘i community college promise program; and HB1205 HD1 SD1, which stipulates that  exclusive representatives of public employees are not required to provide grievance representation to collective bargaining unit members who do not pay dues or dues equivalents and who decline to pay reasonable costs of the representation.  Regarding the last of these bills, it is important to note that if faculty are not members of UHPA, they will no longer be eligible for representation from UHPA in grievances of any kind (e.g., contractual violations, disputes over tenure and/or promotion applications, labor conditions, uncompensated labor, academic freedom, etc.).  Henceforth, faculty who are not members of UHPA will be responsible for acquiring their own representation in such matters.  For the full range of initiatives that the Legislative Committee tracked, please see Senator Molyneux’s annual report.


Student Affairs Committee


Our Student Affairs Committee, co-chaired by Allan Nebrija and Leon Florendo, focused intensively on two key issues last academic year: the Student Discrimination Pre-Filing Checklist and revisions to the campus Student Academic Grievance (SAG) Procedure.  As all student allegations of harassment and/or discrimination are thoroughly investigated, the Office of the Dean of Student Services developed the pre-filing checklist to better understand students’ concerns and to determine appropriate courses of investigation and action.  One of the purposes of the pre-filing checklist, then, is to determine whether a student grievance is in fact a function of harassment and/or discrimination or of another issue/other issues.  It was NOT conceived as a means to either dismiss or discourage student allegations of harassment and/or discrimination.  Upon the recommendation of the Student Affairs Committee, Faculty Senate unanimously approved the pre-filing checklist at its meeting of February 8, 2023.  Additionally, the Student Affairs Committee recommended much needed revisions to the SAG Procedure.  Key among these revisions are a change to the time frame in which students may appeal the assignment of a course grade (from 30 business days to 45 calendar days); the removal of OCEWD from the protocol (since it does not issue grades); notification of the student, the faculty member who issued the grade, the Division Chair (DC)/Division Personnel Committee (DPC) chair, and the appropriate instructional dean once the Academic Grievance Committee renders its decision on the appeal; and replacement of the term “policy” in favor of “procedure” (as this in not an official campus policy).  For a more thorough review of the Student Affairs Committee's work, please see Senator Nebrija and Florendo’s annual report.


While long, I hope this annual review provides some insight into the work and issues your senators have been engaged in to support our campus community.   For a repository of all Faculty Senate committee reports, please consult the Fall 2022-Spring 2023 Supporting Documents folder of our Faculty Senate website.



I would like to acknowledge all of our faculty senators whose labor and sacrifices have contributed to the operations and wellbeing of our campus community.  In particular, I wish to thank Kelsie Aguilera (fFaculty Senate Vice Chair and Distance Education Committee Co-Chair), Summer Barrett (Faculty Senate Secretary), Kathleen (Katie) Cashman (Legislative Relations Committee), William Castillio (Budget and Planning Committee, Co-Chair), Cara Chang (Distance Education Committee Co-Chair and Assessment Committee), Matthew Egami (Elections Committee Co-Chair), Leon Florendo (Student Affairs Committee Co-Chair), Jiajia Garcia (Curriculum Committee Chair), Fa‘amaile Ickes (Academic and Institutional Support Committee Chair), Michelle Igarashi (General Education Committee Chair), Ann Inoshita (Curriculum Committee), Christina Keaulana (Faculty Committee), Chester Leoso (ASUH-Leeward Vice President and Faculty Senate representative), Alyssa MacDonald (Budget and Planning Committee Co-Chair and Elections Committee Co-Chair), Michele Mahi (Assessment Committee Chair), Nolan Miyahara (Budget and Planning Committee), Erika Molyneux (Legislative Relations Committee Chair), Allan Nebrija (Student Affairs Committee Co-Chair), Don Oberheu (Lecturer Mentor Group Representative), Luca Preziati (Curriculum Committee), Michael Scully (Academic and Institutional Support Committee), I-Chia Shih (Faculty Committee Chair), Alex Williamson (ASUH-Leeward President and Faculty Senate representative), and Irwin Yamamoto (Faculty Committee).


All of the above senators have worked extremely hard and discharged themselves admirably.  However, I want to single out for special recognition two individuals who made last academic year more productive and bearable for me.  In particular, I wish to acknowledge Summer Barrett for her exceptional work as Faculty Senate Secretary, but also for her related and overlapping work as our campus Strategic Planning Coordinator and as Coordinator of the Office of Planning, Policy, and Assessment (OPPA).  Her work and insights in multiple areas that affect faculty have been key to the decisions and operations of the college in general and of Faculty Senate in particular.  I would also like to extend a heartfelt mahalo to Kelsie Aguilera in her role as Faculty Senate Vice Chair.  Kelsie has offered exceptional leadership on key issues pertaining to faculty–issues as diverse and important as distance education and guidance on personnel requests (made via our new resource request Personnel rubric, mentioned above).  I and others have benefited enormously from her wise counsel and collegiality during her time on the Faculty Senate Executive Committee.  Whatever good I was able to accomplish over the last academic year on behalf of Faculty Senate was achieved due to the intelligence, acumen, experience, and friendship of Summer and Kelsie.  For that and more, I am enormously grateful.


That said, I would like to extend a warm welcome and congratulations to the members of the 2023-2024 Faculty Senate Executive Committee: Kelsie Aguilera (Chair), Petersen Gross (Vice Chair), and Allan Nebrija (Secretary).  Faculty can rest easier knowing that they are at the helm of Faculty Senate as all are deeply committed to safeguarding faculty rights and interests.  Mahalo for your leadership, Kelsie, Pete, and Allan!


In closing, I wish to thank the entire college community for its contributions of labor, support, and care over the past academic year, and particularly for giving Faculty Senate an opportunity to help make Leeward CC a better place for students, faculty, staff, and our communities.  While it may be an axiom, it is one that bears repeating–and often: Leeward works because you do.


Mahalo nui,


Michael Oishi

Former Chair, Leeward CC Faculty Senate