Botany, zoology merge with University Senate approval of biology department
Published: Tuesday, September 25, 2012
Updated: Tuesday, September 25, 2012 01:09
University Senate approved the merger of the Botany and Zoology departments into the new Biology department at its meeting on Monday. The merger will be effective for the Fall 2013 semester.
The merger was presented at Senate with the support of the dean of the College of Arts and Science, Phyllis Callahan, the Council of Academic Deans, the Provost and the chairs of the botany and zoology departments James Hickey and Douglas Miekle respectively.
“This is a difficult decision for my department, the department of biology, because of the strong history that we’ve had,” Hickey said. “We recognize some of the needs for that. It was perhaps not what we would most like but given the situations of universities across the country today, it was a choice we needed to make and did make.”
Hickey said he is confident that Callahan will not lose sight of the Botany program while making decisions.
One of the reasons for the merger according to Callahan is to make the department easily recognizable by incoming students.
“A good part of this [decision] is driven by students who recognize biology who are looking for biology majors,” Callahan said.
The botany and zoology departments voted and approved the merger separately before presenting the resolution to the Senate.
Emeritus professor of Botany Hardy Eshbaugh asked for the Senators to vote against the merger because the Botany program would no longer receive as much attention if it was part of a larger major.
“That merger is flawed and pedagogically unsound and will not serve Miami’s campus well,” Eshbaugh said.
The department of microbiology will remain separate from the new biology department.
The Senate approved a concept change for the Academic Program Review so that it will focus more on future performance instead of past performance.
The Senate also heard reports from the target committees working on the 2020 plan.