Cabinet highlights: Nov. 17, 2014

President Rita Cheng said a search will begin soon for a chief of staff and interviews are under way for a vice president for Enrollment Management and Student Affairs. Sarah Bickel, who is retiring, currently fills those roles. Pat Haeuser, vice president for Institutional Effectiveness, also has announced her retirement. Haeuser’s position will be filled on an interim basis prior to hiring a full-time replacement.

Three students from the Student Health Advocacy Committee presented to cabinet the committee’s proposal to make NAU a tobacco-free campus. Caitlin Phillips, a biology major and leader of the Tobacco Initiative, Kelsey Pruett, biomedical sciences major and committee president, and Ashley Neppl, political science major and committee vice president, explained that if the proposed policy is adopted, NAU would join about 1,500 other campuses across the country, including the University of Arizona and Arizona State, that have banned tobacco products.

Liz Grobsmith, senior adviser to the president, and Ellen Vaughn, manager of the Office of Sustainability, introduced an NAU climate action plan from the Coordinating Committee for Campus Sustainability. The comprehensive plan addresses sustainability issues from a variety of perspectives that are expected to enhance sustainable practices throughout campus. The plan intends to reduce emissions on and off campus; construct, operate and maintain buildings sustainably; create a zero-waste campus; and reduce water consumption. President Cheng said the plan should measure return on investment as the university faces what could be a difficult budget year. The climate action plan should be available soon.

The election in early November sees the Arizona Legislature with the same makeup of Republicans and Democrats. Flagstaff Rep. Bob Thorpe will be the chair of the House Higher Education and Workforce Development Committee, said Christy Farley, vice president for Government Affairs and Business Partnerships. She also said Gov.-elect Doug Ducey most likely will unveil the state’s budget in mid-January.

Laura Jones, associate vice president for Planning and Institutional Research, presented the President’s Cabinet Report for November. The report contains an update on NAU’s progress toward achieving ABOR’s Enterprise Metrics. It also includes updates on application date and the budget. The report is available on the PAIR website.

A traffic signal outside of the Health and Learning Center at McCreary and San Francisco is now operational, said John Morris, associate vice president for Facility Services.