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Governance roundup for November

Operational IT Committee

Sept. 18 • Interim Chief Information Officer Steve Corbató updated portfolio members on the status of the Kuali initiative, which has changed significantly as a for-profit Kuali arm has taken shape. Corbató committed to track the commercialization process closely over the coming months and look for opportunities to accelerate the U's implementation and ensure the inclusion of features needed for the campus student experience improvement initiative. He also shared with the committee members that the University of Utah has delayed joining the Unizin consortium for the next six months, and members will be kept informed and updated on any progress. Members suggested this would be a good time to evaluate the effectiveness of governance model, identify areas of improvement, and review process and membership. The Faculty Information Technology Advisory Committee (FITAC) has tapped the Senate Executive Committee to provide faculty input into IT issues. Corbató is working with Ruth Watkins and others to select a new Research portfolio chair.

Teaching and Learning Portfolio

Sept. 23 • The group voted to invite Cory Stokes to join the portfolio as a voting member to represent UOnline. Cathy Anderson talked about the role of governance in allocating student computing fees. Catherine Soehner presented the updated draft of a proposed letter to be sent regarding the changes to student computing fee proposals. Changes to the letter will be made and reviewed by the committee.

Oct. 22 • Jon Thomas took the group through a projected allocation of student computing fees based on historical information and current projects the portfolio has agreed to fund. Some decisions must be made to bring the budget in line with funding. Members discussed some potential problems with reducing computer labs, and suggested ensuring a standard definition of a “computer lab” vs. a “computer classroom.” Thomas presented an option whereby the maintenance funds would be centrally pooled and project recipients would request either funds or reimbursement for maintenance issues related to the request. The group acknowledged that no matter what changes are ultimately adopted, someone will see a negative consequence, but the portfolio has to consider the best use of the funds for students. The group voted to adopt a six-year refurbishment schedule for all classrooms. It delayed making changes to the maintenance disbursement pending further information. 

University Support Services

Oct. 14 • Pat Hanna reviewed the proposed portfolio charter changes, which are intended to better describe the committee’s process and scope. New language addresses the portfolio’s role in the purchase of third-party software that may require integration efforts by University Support Services. The group approved the changes, and Hanna will send it to the Operational IT Committee for consideration. Corbató reviewed recent actions surrounding the Kuali community-sourced software consortium. The group was updated regarding the CIO search.

Nov. 18 • The group discussed IT change moratoria and asked to have that schedule included in its deliberations. An update bundling concept was presented, with the goal of streamlining updates and preventing delays. Jeff Herring gave an update on the CIO search and presented a proposal for OITC to consider a security application to protect sensitive data. Matt Lopez reported that the University is in the final stages of choosing an electronic document management vendor.

The Research and Infrastructure portfolios did not meet during this period. For governance agendas and minutes summaries, visit

Last Updated: 4/13/21