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Milling Science and Operations Committee Conference Call Minutes – February 3, 2011

Conference Call
February 3, 2011
Committee Members
Breck Barton, Cereal Food Processors, Inc., Chairman
Troy Anderson, Horizon LLC/Cargill
Steve Curran, General Mills, Inc.
Jack Cwach, ADM Milling Company
Don Sullins, ADM Milling Company
Bill Gross, Bunge Milling, Inc.
Randy Marten, Miller Milling Company
Dave Marty, The Mennel Milling Company
Tom A. Rogers, Wilkins-Rogers, Inc.
Dallas Anthony, Bunge

NAMA Staff:
Mary Waters, NAMA, President

  1. Chairman Breck Barton led the discussion.
  2. The members discussed the importance of the K State program to their companies.
  3. They discussed the draft position description that had been circulated for an instructor of milling.  The members asked Breck and Mary to follow up with Dirk Maier on several questions and the responses are attached.

Current KSU Milling & Grain Processing faculty:

Dr. Jeff Gwirtz Associate Professor
Dr. Hulya Dogan Assistant Professor
Prof. Chris Miller Buhler Instructor of Milling Science
Prof. Huseyin Dogan Instructor
Royal Denning Adjunct Instructor (part-time)

Dr. Ekramul Haque retired in June 2010 (position not yet filled).

Draft Position Description for NAMA Instructor of Milling (100% Teaching)

Responsibilities: This would be a 9-month academic year, non-tenure-track annually renewable position at the Instructor level in the area of milling science and management. The primary purpose of this position is to support teaching of milling related classes during the academic year with a possible summer contract renewable annually for up to three years – similar to the Buhler Instructor position.

The instructor will teach existing undergraduate courses and laboratory sections in milling/grain processing, equipment selection and maintenance, process and operations management, and related safety and regulatory issues in the Milling Science and Management (MSM) program.

The successful candidate will need to bring a high level of milling industry experience and expertise to teaching in classroom, laboratory and pilot mill settings that are part of our MSM courses. This instructor will also support related programmatic efforts such as student advising, student recruitment, internships and job placement, curriculum development, and service on departmental committees.

Qualifications: Applicants should have a B.S. in milling science, cereal science, process engineering, or a related discipline with a minimum of five years direct experience in the wheat, corn, oat or rye milling (or related) industry including production or operating experience, maintenance supervision, and/or project management. Excellent oral and written communication skills, the ability to speak clear English, and demonstrated ability and interest to teach in a classroom setting are a must. The successful applicant must be able to work effectively in a multi-cultural environment.

Expectation of Classes/Labs lead by NAMA Instructor

The current expectation in the fall would be to teach either the offering of GRSC 150 which includes 2 lecture hours and one 3-hour lab per week (instead of Chris Miller) or GRSC 684 Milling Processing Technology Management, which is a 3-credit lecture course for MSM Seniors during the fall semester in their final year (which Chris Miller could also teach; this course could also be team taught based on the skill set and industry experience of the NAMA Instructor). Additionally, this person would teach the second lab section of MSM 681 Milling Science II Laboratory during the fall semester which is a 6-hour per week commitment plus will require close coordination with Dr. Gwirtz who is responsible for the lecture portion of the course (MSM 680) and the first lab section.

During the spring semester, the current expectation would be to teach MSMS 640 Advanced Flow Sheets which is a 2-credit 6-hour per week lab course. Additionally, this person would teach the second lab section of MSM 500 Milling Science I Laboratory during the spring semester which is a 6-hour per week commitment plus will require close coordination with the Dr. Gwirtz who is responsible for the lecture portion of the course (MSM 500) and the first lab section.

Expectations of Advising Students

This person would be expected to eventually take on responsibility for 10-15 MSM students. Advising requires much familiarity with class selection, curriculum matters and the university system. This will take some time to learn. So teaming this person up with another advisor during the first year is the most likely scenario and then in the second year this person would start to take on responsibility for advising students.

Current Recruiting Efforts

The Department is in a transition phase regarding recruiting. Dr. Bob Bennett, the current recruiter, has built up enrollment with an emphasis on in-Kansas recruiting. Another part-time person has been brought on board to focus on out-of-state recruiting.  This position has focused on the “Brains for Grains” approach.

NAMA instructor Recruiting Efforts

Along with the rest of the faculty, this position will be focused on teaching and advising, and hosting potential students (and parents) during on-campus visits rather than traveling for recruiting purposes. Most recruiting has to take place during the academic year when the NAMA instructor would be busy teaching although the instructor would be asked to help host visiting potential students on campus.

How would this instructor impact the use of other faculty? 

The primary person that would be relieved by the NAMA Instructor is Dr. Gwirtz who in addition to his teaching and advising responsibilities also carries an outreach and research responsibility. Once this relief is provided, Dr. Gwirtz will be expected to teach a graduate course on an advanced topic related to milling/grain processing and supervise at least 1-2 graduate students per year with whom he would pursue a bit more milling related research.

Also, note that in past years there was only one lab section in MSM 681 because of low enrollment in the MSM operations option. With the merging of the management option into the operations option, all students will have to take MSM 681. Based on a 100 MSM student enrollment model, there should be about 25 students on average in each class and that would allow offering 2 lab sections of 12-13 students each in the core milling classes at the Junior and Senior level.

Regarding the KSU search for Assistant Professor of milling/grain processing – is a PhD required and if so, why?

It is the expectation of the University that all “tenure track” faculty positions be filled with faculty who hold a Ph.D. in their field of science. Since we give PhDs in our field of Grain Science, we are required to fill tenure track positions with faculty who are academically qualified (meaning they have a PhD) to hold the titles of Assistant Professor, Associate Professor or Professor as they move along in their professional careers. We also have the option to fill faculty positions with individuals who are professionally qualified (years of industry experience and recognized expertise). In those cases, they are appointed to Instructor positions and have the same faculty privileges, as others except they cannot earn tenure. All of the KSU faculty is referred to as “professors.”

The milling/grain science department is not the only one wrestling with the faculty appointment of “professionally qualified” industry experts. For example, business schools often have successful business professionals join them as faculty (some call them “Executive in Residence”). Other universities have adopted the titles of “Assistant Professor of Practice, Associate Professor of Practice, Professor of Practice” to recognize someone who is “professionally qualified” with a title that differs from  “instructor.”

I have begun to initiate discussion at KSU for a similar designation with a few people but haven’t had time to push it forward very much.

Would placing a non-PhD in this position impact funding?

This position was originally budgeted based on 20% from College teaching funds, 30% from IGP funds and 50% from research funds. When it was advertised last year, appointments among our faculty were arranged in order to secure additional teaching funds from within our department. This allowed us to advertise the position as 50% teaching, 20% IGP and 30% research. After the failed search, we took a portion of those teaching funds and expanded the responsibilities of one of our other instructors (Huseyin Dogan) to teach GRSC 610 Electricity and its Control for the Grain Processing Industry this spring semester. Mr. Dogan also teaches GRSC 210 CAD Flow Sheets for Grain Processing, which has been taught every fall and spring, and will go to a fall only offering in the coming year. These are the two courses that the new faculty member would teach.

The NAMA Instructor will help relieve pressure due to the multiple lab sections and the new Assistant Professor will need to be involved in teaching some of the complementary courses that are required by more than just the MSM students. Also, we have a need to teach 786 Particle Technology for Grain Processing Industries to our MS and PhD students, and need an additional faculty member to supervise our graduate students.

Regarding the GEAPS/KSU professional development and continuing education initiative – is Purdue the model for this program and will existing grain science staff be expected to teach these courses?

Yes, the distance education program developed at Purdue in partnership with GEAPS was moved to KSU and is experiencing substantial growth. This month it passed 1,000 participants from 21 countries taking 12 existing distance education courses during the past 5.5 years.

New courses have been developed in cooperation with industry experts and university professors from multiple universities (including Purdue, KSU, Iowa State, North Dakota State, Oklahoma State).

Developing distance education courses is time consuming and requires substantial commitment by a content expert (whether a professor at a university or an industry expert). Therefore, no one is required to get involved. However, a number of the faculty are quite excited about distance education because it provides an opportunity to develop improved teaching materials that can then also be used in their classroom teaching.

Last year (January 2010) a full-time Distance Education Coordinator was hired to manage the program.  This position is fully funded through program fees.  The current coordinator has a BS in BSM from KSU and worked five years for Quaker before returning to take this position.

Once the content experts have developed a course, the District Education Coordinator and a consultant facilitate the teaching of these courses. They handle the questions from students.

Some of the classes are recorded (such as GRSC 101 Introduction to Grain Science during Fall 2010) so that they can now be offered by distance for college credit through KSU’s Division of Continuing Education. GRSC 101 has 26 mostly non-majors enrolled this spring semester. This has freed up one of our faculty from teaching it during fall and spring, which was the previous situation.

Due to the demand for more courses and the need for more formalized professional development in the grain and feed industry, KSU and GEAPS have come up with the concept of establishing a Center that would as its primary responsibility oversee, manage, facilitate, grow the envisioned continuing education and credentialing program. This would “professionalize” our approach to continuing education and ideally allow it to broaden from initially grain operations only to feed manufacturing, flour milling, grain processing, and biofuels operations. The Center will allow us to establish formal partnerships with organizations such as GEAPS (and hopefully also with NAMA, IAOM and others) and put in place financial arrangements to make the Center self-sustaining. We currently have a second open faculty position that we are trying to fill and envision this new faculty member to become the Director of this new Center. We fully realize that we cannot establish this Center and achieve its purpose by diverting the attention of our current faculty. However, some of our faculty (especially instructors who are on 9-month appointments) could be hired by the Center on summer contracts in order to support this continuing education effort. Additionally, there are faculty experts scattered at other universities that the Center will allow us to engage for the benefit of our industry. This concept will be discussed at the March 30 stakeholder summit.

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