BOARD OF TRUSTEES FOR FRANCIS MARION UNIVERSITY
Francis Marion University
Stokes Administration Building, President’s Board Room
Thursday, August 6, 2020 – 4:00 pm –4:25 pm

Presiding:
Mr. Robert E. Lee, Chair

Present:
Mr. Jody Bryson (by web meeting)
Mr. William W. Coleman, Jr. (by web meeting)
Mr. H. Paul Dove, Jr (by web meeting)
Dr. H. Randall Dozier (in person)
Mr. Benjamin I. Duncan, II (by web meeting)
Mr. L. Franklin Elmore (by web meeting)
Mr. William Edward Gunn (by web meeting)
Mr. Kenneth W. Jackson (by web meeting
Mr. Stephen N. Jones (by teleconference)
Senator Hugh K. Leatherman, Member Emeritus (by web meeting)
Mr. George C. McIntyre (by web meeting)
Mr. Mark S. Moore (by web meeting)

Others Present:
Mr. Darryl Bridges, Vice President for Finance and Facilities
Dr. Fred Carter, President
Mr. Matt Christian, Florence Morning News Reporter
Mrs. Kim Davis, Executive Assistant to the President
Mr. Larry Falck, Director of Multimedia Services
Mr. Glen Gourley, Chair of the Faculty and Professor of Theatre Arts and Speech – Directing
Mr. Murray Hartzler, Director of Athletics
Dr. Christopher Kennedy, Vice President for Student Life
Dr. Peter King, Provost
Mr. Matthew McColl, Director of Media Relations
Mr. Tucker Mitchell, Vice President of Communications
Mr. Tymoshio Robinson, SGA President for 2020-2021
Mrs. Lauren Stanton, Executive Director of the Francis Marion University Foundation

Mr. Lee called the meeting to order at 4:00 pm, and then he asked Mrs. Davis to call the roll.  Mr. Lee then stated for the record that media notification was made in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act, and that a quorum was present

Mr. Lee brought the minutes of the June 4, 2020 meeting before the board for approval. Mr. Coleman made a motion that the minutes be approved, and Mr. Jones seconded the motion.  The minutes received unanimous approval by the board.

Executive Affairs Committee:
Mr. Lee presented to the board Resolution 05-20 for the Campus Re-opening Plan Fall 2020 Approval.  Mr. Lee made a motion that the resolution be approved, and Mr. Coleman seconded the motion.   The minutes received unanimous approval by the board.

Academic Affairs and Accreditation Committee:

Mr. Bryson gave the following report from the committee meeting:

  • The Provost Office has been very hard at work planning for the Fall 2020 semester. To accommodate for social distancing, classroom capacity has been reduced, furniture removed, and some larger classes are moving to other venues such as auditoriums or the gym.
  • Some of the faculty have offered their technological expertise to their colleagues by offering workshops to show ways of improving online classes.
  • At the beginning of the fall semester, there will be an increase in online classes, and there will also be some hybrid classes and in person classes. Starting on September 8, the majority of classes will be conducted in person, with a few hybrid and online classes remaining.
  • Faculty elections which are usually held in the spring have been postponed until the fall.
  • The Admissions Office has been very busy with virtual orientations that have taken place during the summer and will continue until August 17.
  • The counselors in the Center for Academic Success and Advisement have registered almost 900 new students, including both new freshmen and transfers.
  • Based on enrollment figures on August 1, total enrollment for Fall 2020 is in line with total enrollment for Fall 2019.
  • Thirty-six students (20 undergraduates, 14 Masters-level, and 2 Doctorate-level) are expected to complete degree requirements by the end of the Summer II 2020 session on August 10.
  • The School of Business has recently received full accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.
  • The Department of Nursing received full accreditation from the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education for the maximum five years for the baccalaureate, master’s, and doctoral programs.
  • The Department of Nursing was designated a National League for Nursing Center of Excellence in the category of Promoting the Pedagogical Expertise of Faculty for the second consecutive term.

Mr. Bryson concluded his report.

Development and Alumni Committee: 

Mr. Moore shared the following report with the board:

Foundation:

  • The Foundation has received numerous contributions to the Norma M. Lynch Scholarship and Hampton Howard Brown Scholarship.
  • Four new endowed scholarship agreements are being finalized.

Alumni:

  • Mr. Lee Daugherty attended a virtual Council of Alumni Marketing and Membership Professionals conference and gained perspective regarding others’ experiences throughout the country.
  • During the COVID-19 pandemic, the Alumni Board is having virtual meetings.
  • Alumni receptions will be hosted at the Performing Arts Center to maintain social distancing while the pandemic continues.

Regional and Community Programs:

  • The University Place Gallery is open from noon to 5:00 pm on Tuesdays through Fridays.  Exhibits may be viewed in person and online.
  • The Richardson Center for the Child resumed operation on June 15 and continues to follow the guidelines issued by DSS, DHEC, and CDC guidelines.  Supplemental opportunities are offered online as well.
  • The Performing Arts Center is now open after the Governor released all theatres, festivals, and performing arts centers for operations as of July 29.  For each show, there can be no more than 250 people or 50% of the certificate of occupancy issued by the fire marshal, whichever is less.  The Performing Arts Center will make necessary changes and work with potential artists in this endeavor.  Further adjustments will be made as new state guidelines become available.
  • The Allman Betts Band concert that was scheduled for August 19 has been moved to May 27, 2021.

Mr. Moore concluded his report

Finance and Facilities Committee:

Mr. Gunn shared the following information from the committee meeting:

Finance:

  • The FY 2019-20 Operating Fund Year-End Review was discussed.  The university collected revenues of $925,000 above projections and held expenses to 90% of the operating budget.
  • The university has utilized CARES Act funding to make available direct assistance to students, provide refunds for housing and dining fees at the end of the spring semester, and to offset expenses related to COVID-19. The university will continue to seek reimbursements for all eligible expenses related to the pandemic.
  • The operating budget for the current year is based upon the continuing resolution and tuition revenue projections.  Once fall revenues are finalized, the university will adjust revenue and expenses accordingly.

Facilities:

  • Major projects remain on schedule with the Leatherman Medical Education Complex being finalized in the next few weeks and the Honors Center being completed by the middle of the fall semester.

Mr. Gunn concluded his report.

Student Life and Athletics Committee:

Mr. Dove gave the following committee report in Ms. Leatherman’s absence:

Student Government Association:

  • The SGA has been busy working on the organization’s Mission Statement, Vision Statement, and Strategic Plan for 2020-21. Organizational and structural changes for the SGA in the coming year were also discussed.
  • The SGA Food Pantry and Clothing Closet will continue to operate throughout the 2020-21 academic year.

Student Life:

  • There are a number of virtual and online activities as well as in person activities being planned for the Fall 2020 semester.
  • The Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity has been brought back to campus and currently has 37 members.

Athletics:

  • The women’s tennis team earned an Intercollegiate Tennis Association All-Academic Team award for the seventh consecutive season.
  • The men’s tennis team earned an All-American Team award from the Intercollegiate Tennis Association for the fourth time in seven years.
  • The golf team earned a Golf Coaches Association of America All-Academic Team award for the seventh consecutive year.
  • The Peach Belt Conference voted to begin fall sports on October 1, 2020.  The athletes playing fall sports will come to campus on August 14, and all other athletes will arrive on September 8.
  • The university has set Protocols for the training room, weight room, locker room, team travel, and games to reduce the risk of exposure to COVID-19.
  • Prior to each practice, the student athletes will have screenings such as temperature checks and questions specific to COVID-19 symptoms.  If any of the screenings yield a response that indicates the student athlete may have COVID-19, the athlete will be referred to Student Health Services.
  • Each team will have individual meetings to go over all protocols to ensure that they understand how important it is to follow those protocols.

Mr. Dove concluded his report.

President’s Report:

Dr. Carter made the following comments during his report:

  • During the last three weeks, the university has worked diligently to finalize preparations for moving students into housing by appointment from August 13 through September 7 and starting classes online beginning August 17.  On September 8, the majority of classes will move to in person instruction, with the remainder being taught in an online or blended format.
  • In accordance with the university’s Reopening Plan, masks or face coverings are required in all university buildings with the following exceptions:   individual offices, individual residences or apartments, and while eating meals.  In addition, masks must be worn at university outdoor events and on other occasions when social distancing is not possible.
  • The university received a new set of guidelines from the NCAA, and is in the process of integrating them into the university’s COVID-19 protocol.
  • The Leatherman Medical Education Building should be complete within the next 30 days.  Also, the Honors Building will hopefully open in October.  The university plans to have a dedication ceremony for both of these buildings later in the fall.
  • Construction on the Fresh Water Ecology Center is scheduled to begin in fall 2020 and will hopefully be completed in 2021.
  • There are four mini-commencements planned for the May 2020 and August 2020 graduates.
    • Friday, September 18 at 7:00 pm – School of Business and School of Education Graduates
    • Saturday, September 19 at 10:00 am – Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Engineering, and Psychology Graduates
    • Saturday, September 19 at 2:00 pm – English, Fine Arts, Department of History, Mass Communications, Political Science, Sociology, and General Studies Graduates
    • Saturday, September 19 at 6:00 pm – School of Health Sciences Graduates
  • Appreciation was extended to the trustees, faculty, and staff for their assistance in preparing for the beginning of the fall semester and making sure that everything is done in accordance with COVID-19 guidelines.

Dr. Carter concluded his report.

Unfinished Business:
None

New Business:
Mr. Lee stated that Dr. Carter’s evaluation is due soon.  Please let Dr. Wages know as soon as possible if you have any comments to include.

Executive Session:
None

Mr. Lee adjourned the meeting at 4:25 pm.

Respectfully Submitted,
Floyd L. Keels
Secretary