Senators discuss athletic budget, upcoming art exhibit

Staff senators listened to comments about student athletes and an upcoming art exhibit at a UCA Staff Senate meeting Feb. 26.

Athletic Director Brad Teague presented to the strategic budget advisory committee to clarify how athletic budgeting works.

Arch Jones, senator and UCAPD project manager, said the presentation was enlightening.

“Any derogatory thoughts you may have on the athletic budget, you may still have afterward, but they will be better explained,” Jones said. “They really do give back.”

Senator Vicki Parish said, “Understanding the budget helped me relate to athletics.”

Senator Sandra Hooper, Torreyson Library circulation supervisor, explained conflicts with an upcoming Baum Gallery exhibit planned for next semester during her public art committee report.

North Carolina artist Patrick Dougherty will create a piece of art on campus during Conway ArtsFest 2014. Dougherty is known for his natural wood structures, built in numerous locations across the U.S. and around the world in countries such as South Korea, France, Italy and Australia.

President Tom Courtway nixed the initial plan of setting it up on the Alumni Circle, as it will be a longstanding exhibit for up to two years.

The committee found two other suitable spots to pitch to the artist and Baum Gallery Director Barclay McConnell.

Before the staff senate meeting, McConnell said the project would be beneficial for the university and that she will continue to pursue a location either at Alumni Circle or on McAlister Hall lawn.

President Lindsey Osborne, sorority life director, described topics from the president’s meeting with the rest of the senators.

Osborne will now serve on the student success and retention committee.

Senator Aaron Knight, advancement research and communications specialist, said the diversity advisory committee will review the senate’s nondiscrimination draft before it is reviewed by Courtway and the UCA Board of Trustees. Multiple specifications were added to the previous draft, which can be found online.

Osborne reiterated to the senate what was discussed at the president’s meeting about troublesome “smoking trash” on areas close to campus. Senators decided that there is nothing the university can do to create policies, because the areas are privately owned, and the city has the right of way in several areas on campus.

Vice President for Advancement and UCA Foundation President Shelly Mehl allocated $10,000 for staff development. The staff senate will decide how the money is spent.

Senate Vice President Chad Hearne, housing project specialist, reminded the senate of upcoming senate elections, which are set for late April.

No officer reports were given from secretary Lori Hudspeth, treasurer Tracy Spence or parliamentarian Meghan Thompson.

Senator Stephanie McBrayer, housing director, said the employee recognition committee recently discussed nominations for Employee of the Year, which are due March 14.

“We would love students to know that they can nominate their favorite faculty and staff members,” McBrayer said.

The form to submit can be found online at

Awards will be given at the Service Awards Program on April 10. Any classified or non-classified full-time UCA employee with two years of continuous service as of Dec. 31, 2013 is eligible to be nominated by faculty, staff, students or alumni.

The annual faculty and staff spring picnic is tentatively scheduled from 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. April 30. The senate said it hopes to incorporate a cereal drive as part of the picnic, and are still discussing what money from games will go to benefit.

Information Technology employee Mary Jackson suggested that the courtesy committee add items other than cake and candy to the cake-walk prizes, as some participants may not like, or be able to have sweets.

Osborne reminded the senate that staff is welcome to sign up for the upcoming Day of Service.

The UCA’s Staff Senate had no old or new business to discuss.

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