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October 2004 Meeting Minutes

UCAR University Relations Committee Meeting
13 October 2004
Boulder, Colorado


The University Relations Committee met in Boulder on 13 October 2004.  Prior to that meeting, the URC participated in the UCAR Members’ meeting held on 12-13 October.

Committee members present:

John Merrill, Chairman, The University of Rhode Island
Mary Barth, Mesoscale and Microscale Meteorology Division/NCAR
Ginger Caldwell, Scientific Computing Division/NCAR
Kerry Cook, Cornell University
Efi Foufoula-Georgiou, University of Minnesota
Joanne Graham, Unidata/UOP
James Hansen, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Everette Joseph, Howard University
David Karoly, University of Oklahoma
Michael Morgan, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Richard Orvillle, Texas A&M University
Kenneth Pickering, University of Maryland
Eugene Takle, Iowa State University
Lisa White, San Francisco State University
S.T. Wu, University of Alabama in Huntsville
Sepideh Yalda, Millersville University of Pennsylvania

UCAR Trustee Liaison:

Len Pietrafesa, North Carolina State University


Bernard Grant, Financial Operations Specialist, UCAR & Lower-Atmosphere Facilities Oversight Section
Cliff Jacobs, Head, UCAR & Lower-Atmosphere Facilities Oversight Section

Others present for all or part of the meeting were:

Richard Anthes, President, UCAR
Tom Bogdan, Acting Associate Director, SERE Laboratory, NCAR
Rena Brasher-Alleva, Director, Budget & Planning Office, NCAR
Eron Brennan, Multi-Media Systems Administrator, UCAR
Jack Fellows, Vice President of Corporate Affairs and Director of UOP
Brant Foote, Associate Director, Research Applications Laboratory, NCAR
Susan Friberg, Administrator, UCAR
Tim Hundsdorfer, Budget & Planning Office, NCAR
Tim Killeen, Director, NCAR
Michael Knolker, Director, High Altitude Observatory, NCAR
Kathryn Schmoll, Vice President, Finance and Administration, UCAR
Kathleen Sharpe, Administrator, Earth Observing Laboratory, NCAR
Catherine Shea, Executive Administrator to the Director, NCAR
Diane Simmons, Research Applications Laboratory, NCAR
Kathryn Strand, Manager of Budget & Administration, UOP
Susan Warner, Executive Assistant, UCAR
Jennifer Wilson, Research Applications Laboratory, NCAR
Larry Winter, Deputy Director, NCAR


1.         Welcome and regular business items

Chairman John Merrill welcomed the committee and guests.  He then reviewed the draft notes from the April 2004 meeting; the meeting notes were approved by the committee.

2.         Review of non-NSF NCAR and non-core UOP proposals

a.  Subcommittee report

Merrill, in the absence of Subcommittee Chair Stephen Monismith, reported on the Subcommittee’s review of NCAR and UOP proposals that were submitted from January through June 2004.  The few questions that came up during their review were answered satisfactorily by the NCAR Director’s Office, and overall, the subcommittee found the adherence to the guidelines very good.  The URC received the subcommittee's report on their proposal review.

b.  Proposal re-engineering project

Katy Schmoll, UCAR Vice President, Finance and Administration, reported that the business  reengineering project, currently underway at UCAR, is a review of all current NCAR/UCAR policies and practices.  She explained that because of the URC’s role in the review of NCAR’s non-NSF proposals and UOP’s non-core proposals, input from the committee was being requested.  Schmoll asked the URC if the information provided to them was sufficient for their review of the proposals and if the five criteria were still appropriate.

During the discussion that followed, Ken Pickering pointed out that the URC had streamlined the review process four or five years ago and he was not sure what else could be done.  Discussion continued on the five criteria—should the questions be reworded, should “check” boxes be substituted for written responses, and should training be provided to PIs that would ensure completeness of answers.  It was decided to review the criteria at a later time.

c.  Subcommittee appointment

The URC appointed the following Subcommittee members for the next proposal review  period:

Kerry Cook, Chairwoman
Jim Hansen
Michael Morgan

3.         Liaison Reports

Several committee members gave liaison reports on their respective divisions.  John Merrill highlighted some of the current activities of the UOP—the strong international involvement in the GLOBE program, the development and promulgation of digital libraries in the DLESE and NSDL programs, the restructure of the COMET MetEd website, and the increased international data distribution by Unidata.  Gene Takle visited with Acting Director of ATD, Rit Carbone, and division scientists and discussed their draft strategic report and opportunities for university involvement.  Takle also discussed how to engage and train students in instrumentation and possible avenues that could be developed to capture student’s interest in this area.  SCD liaison, Michael Morgan, reported that the need for space was the biggest concern for the computing division.  Efi Foufoula-Georgiou reported that she met with RAL Associate Director Brant Foote, was impressed with their products that were based on solid science, and congratulated this division for their work.  CGD liaison Jim Hansen reported that this division’s biggest worry was the budget and how it would affect the role of a scientist in a national center. 

Upon completion of the liaison reports, Sepi Yalda asked how meaningful is the role of the URC divisional liaisons?  Should this role be eliminated or enhanced?  It was decided to explore the effectiveness of the liaison role at the Spring meeting.  In the meantime, S.T. Wu volunteered to be the HAO liaison and it was agreed other reassignments would be done on-line.

4.         Continue discussions on Faculty Fellowship

Tom Bogdan, Acting Associate Director of SERE Lab, reviewed the NCAR Faculty Fellowship Program, a bi-directional exchange program between NCAR scientists and university faculty, with an emphasis on UCAR member and affiliate universities.  Bodgan asked the committee if they would serve as a selection committee for this exchange program.  Questions were then asked on the cost of the program, duration of visits, number of exchanges, and availability of selection criteria.  A subcommittee of the URC was appointed to work with Bodgan to flesh out the Faculty Fellowship Program; the members appointed were:  Everette Joseph, David Karoly, Lisa White, and Sepi Yalda.

5.         October meeting post-mortem

The committee agreed that the Members’ meeting was very successful.  The panel structure was effective and engaged the participation of the Members.  S.T. Wu commented that foreign institutions are not involved in these October meetings and asked in what ways could UCAR actively involve them in the future.

6.         Spring 2005 meeting

Merrill announced that he has offered to host the Spring URC meeting at the University of Rhode Island.  Dates will be determined by email correspondence.    

The committee adjourned at 6:45pm.

~ End of Notes ~


Meeting Questions? Contact: Susan Warner <swarner@ucar.edu>
Website Questions? Contact: Michelle Flores <michelle@ucar.edu>
Last Modified: 2005-09-14 10:48 -07