“I think they’ve mistaken the character of representation to suggest that the reason why we serve adequately is because only of our classroom experiences,” Perrin said.
Perrin said he would be fine with a threshold of members from the College and that he thinks the committee needs more resources and should assume an oversight role as opposed to an advisory charge.
The committee reached a general consensus that they wanted the direction of their charge to move towards an oversight role.
Members of the executive committee specifically expressed concern with the presence of Athletic Director Bubba Cunningham and Michelle Brown, director of the Academic Support Program for Student-Athletes, on the committee because of Cunningham’s and Brown’s close involvement with athletes.
Brown said her experience serving on the committee has been valuable to her work, and Cunningham said he had never seen a faculty athletics committee without an athletic director present. Both were asked to leave the meeting momentarily while the committee discussed, in closed session, Cunningham’s and Brown’s participation in the committee.
“I think it is absolutely essential,” Cunningham said about his presence on the committee.
The athletics committee also reviewed a draft of an updated procedure for dealing with complaints or questions directed to the committee.
Chairwoman Joy Renner said the new procedure needs to build trust in the committee and encourage students and faculty to feel comfortable voicing concerns. She said it is important the procedure closes the loop and ensures information will get back to all of the involved parties.
Perrin said the committee needs to assume concerns are true and valid, which he said was more of a cultural issue than a structural one.
“I think it’s really crucial that everything has to eventually make it to FAC,” Perrin said.