On Thursday, the University’s Board of Regents held their monthly meeting at the University of Michigan-Dearborn as part of a yearly tradition.
In her opening remarks, University President Mary Sue Coleman lauded the Dearborn campus, which only hosts one meeting each year.
“UM-Dearborn is such a powerful presence in metro Detroit, and it’s always rewarding to be on campus,” she said.
The meeting began by commending Suellyn Scarnecchia for her work as University vice president and general counsel, a post she has held since 2008. She will be staying with the University as a member of the Law School’s faculty.
The Regents approved Gunalan Nadarajan as the new dean of the School of Art & Design. Nadarajan was formerly the vice provost for research and dean of graduate studies at the Maryland Institute College of Art and replaces Bryan Rogers, who was the dean of the school for 12 years.
A new undergraduate degree program — a Bachelor of Arts or Science in information — was also approved at the meeting. The program will be offered by the School of Information starting in Fall 2014.
“It’s a real opportunity for our students because the expertise of the School of Information is really about the usage of technology and interface between humans and technology,” University Provost Philip Hanlon said. “That’s a really important field.”
Hanlon said he hopes to have between 50 and 100 students enroll in the program, but he added that he currently has no specific estimate.
“I’m very excited that the expertise of another set of our faculty is being (made) available to our undergraduates — it’s great,” he said.
Another issue discussed at the meeting was the North Campus Research Complex’s leasing space. The NCRC has attracted new businesses and research and has acquired an accelerator since opening. But Tim Slottow, the University’s executive vice president and chief financial officer, said the complex is still “not quite half full.”
Slottow added that the lease agreements are partially for faculty start-up companies to have physical space at the NCRC.
“We’re basically investing in our faculty intellectual property … the leases are to allow them to get their companies started on University property with a rate that is affordable to them.”
The newly-elected president and vice president of Central Student Government, Business senior Manish Parikh and LSA junior Omar Hashwi, also attended the meeting.
Parikh addressed the Regents, speaking of CSG’s work throughout the past year, including the passing of House Bill 4393, which prevents those who seek medical attention due to intoxication and under the age of 21 from receiving Minor in Possession of alcohol citations.
Parikh also mentioned the Students Association of Michigan, a state-wide organization comprising student governments of the 15 public universities in Michigan, which recently elected three University students to its executive board.
About 20 supporters of tuition equality — two of whom spoke during the public comments portion of the meeting — were also present.
Last month, more than 200 people attended the meeting in Ann Arbor in support of tuition equality, which would allow undocumented residents of the state of Michigan to be considered for in-state tuition rates.
During next month’s meeting, the board will approve several financial matters, including tuition.