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Report on the Fall ’07 ABET Board Meeting

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1 Report on the Fall ’07 ABET Board Meeting
Arnie Peskin, IEEE Representative Director, ABET Board of Directors Nov. 17, Boston, MA

2 ABET Annual Meeting 75th Anniversary Event
Program was much better than usual, i.e. : Todd Nissen, US Trade Representative (on accreditation and globalization) Charles Vest, Pres. of NAE, past pres. of MIT (on attributes of future engineers)

3 Board Meeting--- Major Topic Was Financials
ABET Reserves are perilously low (estimates are from under $100k to $191k projected year-end). ABET Leadership team expect to add an additional $177k in 2008. Have made operational changes in financial management No imminent cash-flow problem. Goal is to reach goal of 30% reserves within next three years.

4 Details added in Executive Session
The numbers are not confidential My opinions are not confidential Specific causes and remedies may be.

5 How did this happen? IEEE has been warning ABET of this danger for at least two years. Budgets are set early, changed capriciously during the year. Systemic flaws in budgeting, reporting and analysis. Transitions to new model & software mishandled.

6 Actions Now Being Taken
$350k in additional expense reductions and revenue increases identified for 2008. Changes to forecasting and reporting. Staff consolidation due to attrition.

7 Longer Term Measures Strategic and governance issues, current structure ineffective. Staff changes, new external auditor. A management consultant will be retained in 2009.

8 Reaction of the Board Mixed: some see a crisis, others are more ambivalent. IEEE/CSAB Directors are skeptical that the worst is behind us. EAB should be prepared for an assessment increase despite assurances to the contrary.

9 Other Major Issues Board Operations Task Group PAVE
International Accreditation

10 Board Operations Task Group
Staff has partially implemented the prior recommendations on transparency and engagement. They expect full implementation in the coming year. Next interim Board teleconference scheduled for Feb. 6, 2008

11 PAVE Society survey and Society Summit helped capture best practices.
PEV Training fully implemented; usable application expected this year Should go into maintenance mode within one year. Financial ramifications: there are additional economies to be derived by scaling down training plans

12 International Accreditation
Full implementation is ramping up. Trend is to blur the distinction between domestic and international But apparently this is not a culprit in budget shortfall.

13 Other Noteworthy Actions
Liabilities associated with the word ‘safety’ in EAC criteria NCOSE voted onto ABET Board with shared responsibilities in Systems Eng. ABET will levy a fee for Observer attendance at meetings. Establishment of an ABET Foundation to support special projects

14 BOD Skip Fletcher new ABET President; Joe Sussman new President-elect Bruce Eisenstein succeeds Arnie Peskin as IEEE Director Departed from custom by conducting some business before adjournment

15 Report on Strategic Management Initiative
Governance, Globalization and Education Just getting organized Developing guiding principles and postulating possible outcomes

16 Likely Strategic Outcomes
Add academic and industrial Board representation, yet making Board smaller Establish authentication and portability of credentials Accommodate alternative course delivery systems. The future of campus visits???

17 Next Meetings Inter-meeting teleconference, Feb. 6
Next meeting scheduled for March 28 in Baltimore May be cancelled in favor of another teleconference as a cost saving

18 Personal Reflections This is a critical moment for ABET
ABET would have been far worse off without the activism of IEEE ABET is worth preserving.

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