Historian’s Report for November 1, 2012 (Santa Cruz)


On October 25, 1990, twenty-five years ago, Santa Cruz hosted the seventh meeting of the Council of University of California Emeriti Associations after its founding on the Berkeley campus on October 27, 1987. Highlights of that October 25, 1990 meeting are included in this report.


The University’s Santa Cruz campus opened in 1965 along with the Irvine and San Diego campuses on 2,000 acres of the Cowell Family Ranch in the foothills of the Santa Cruz Mountains. It contains on a single campus a cluster of ten small residential colleges (Cowell, Stevenson, Crown, Merrill, Porter, Kresge, Oakes, Eight, Nine, and Ten). Students may take classes in any of the colleges, but first year and transferring students take their core classes in their “home” college. Total enrollment for the 2010/2011 academic year totaled 17,903 (16,451 undergraduates and 1,452 graduate students). The campus elevation varies from 285 feet at the entrance to 1,195 feet in the northern area. The pedestrian paths, which connect the  different areas of the campus, have footbridges across the numerous ravines. UCSC has a unique mascot, the Banana Slug, named after a bright yellow, slimy, shell-less mollusk commonly found on the redwood forest floor.


The meeting was held in the Senior Common Room of Crown College. After the minutes for the spring meeting on April 26, 1990 at UC Irvine were approved, Chair Moses “Mo” Greenfield called on Henry Fagin for the Treasurer’s report. He reported assets of $2,675 and expected income from each campus emeriti association of $1,400. The Academic Senate made $1,700 available but only a small amount was used. Discussion followed as to whether income from local dues should suffice in the future and not request funds from the Academic Council. A discussion followed concerning CUCEA becoming a support  group of the University. A committee composed of Adrian Kragen, Morley Walker with Henry Fagin as chair was appointed to make a study and report at a later meeting.


Chair Greenfield’s report included two matters of concern. The first was on office space for active emeriti. There needs to be more evidence to present to the administrators. The second was on progress being made to obtain a Presidential statement on emeriti rights. A subcommittee of the University Committee on Faculty Welfare prepared a statement to send to President Gardner.


Matters of concern expressed by Chair Elect Adrian Kragen included an emeriti serving on the University Retirement Board and direct contact with President Gardner with perhaps an annual meeting.


Morley Walker said for those retiring before 1980 there would be a one time cost of living increase to bring them to 80% rather than the current 75%. He mentioned the proposed golden handshake, which later became known as VERIP. An estimated 2,000 faculty and 6,400 staff would be eligible. He further said there would be no state contributions to the UC retirement fund for this year.


Reports by the campus representatives followed. Berkeley now has a retirement center. A committee at Los Angles developed a biobibliography form to obtain the activities of its emeriti. The hope is for a 50% response. A copy of the form was handed out to all those present. Santa Barbara’s retirement center serves both academic and staff retirees. San Francisco reported an attempt to hear from emeriti who do not participate as well as the problem of space. Riverside has both an emeriti and staff retirees organization and publish a joint newsletter. Space is also a problem. A yearly outstanding emeriti award has been created. Santa Cruz has a small emeriti organization with approximately 20 active members. Because of their relatively small number, emeriti at San Diego were part of the retirement association until last spring when an Emeriti Association was established with 32 members. Davis reports a membership of around 50% of those eligible to join. Their first newsletter is slated to be published next month. They would like to have an emeriti member on the campus welfare committee. At Irvine, emeriti and retirees are in one organization but there is hope for a separate emeriti association.


After an excellent lunch, John Adams of UCSF questioned if emeriti could audit classes. The group felt that only contacting the professor as a courtesy was all that was needed provided a seat was available.


Claude Fawcett of UCLA elaborated further on the biobibliography survey of its members. The group thought this should be done for each campus and then analyzed statewide. A discussion followed. Should the form be a checklist or include more detailed information? The group preferred having more specific information, but a checklist could be used as a supplement. John Adams hoped this survey would reveal emeriti who have entered a new field. He became a farmer.


Adrian Kragen of UCB said emeriti volunteering has been successful and the Chancellor has agreed to more emeriti involvement.


Ralph Nair brought up the problems in higher education as listed in three recent Los Angeles Times articles. This led to a discussion of how emeriti might help.


A discussion followed on “Fagin Stars” which began at the San Francisco meeting a year ago and continued at the Riverside meeting last spring in which Henry Fagin wanted a list of distinguished service  by emeriti on each campus.


David Heron discussed the storage of CUCEA’s archives. He said the Academic Council only wanted the records that related to them. The group decided to send the materials to the UCLA Emeriti Association Archivist Robert Vosper for storage.


Claude Fawcett prepared a proposal dealing with retirement. When should a faculty member retire? Is adaptability to change a factor? Are there faculty who could give advice? Adrian Kragen mentioned a distinguished professor at Berkeley is suing the University for forcing him to retire at age 70.


Richard Cramer talked about the removal of the 80% cap on retirement salary. Morley Walker said the University was tied to what the state does for PERS members.


It was announced that the next meeting will be at Riverside on April 25, 1991.


Ralph Johnson

CUCEA Historian