Academic senate discusses new procedures for faculty appointments

By Christin Watkins

The Committee on University Statutes and Senate Procedures recommended that the Board of Trustees delegate its responsibility of reviewing tenured faculty appointments to the president, who will then delegate this responsibility to the chancellor and provost.

This proposed revision is aimed to improve the efficiency of appointments made “and thereby maintain the University’s competitiveness in attracting the best faculty to the University,” the proposal stated.

“This amendment to the statute gives the Trustees the direction of doing that delegation,” William Maher, professor of library administration and chair of University Statutes and Senate Procedures committee Wsssaid.

Interim Chancellor Barbara Wilson acknowledged the potential need for policy revision to improve this process at the meeting.

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“I actually think there are several different paths going forward,” Wilson said. “I think the Board wants to have this conversation. I think they understand these issues.”

Douglas McDonald, chemistry professorss, said the issues could create conflicts of interest.

“One of the problems was meddling by the Board among University administrators, particularly the Chancellor,” he said.

A proposal to move forward with Center for Advanced Studies (CAS) budget cuts was also discussed at the meeting.

The current CAS budget is over $1 million — $422,000 accounts for faculty support, $374,000 for the salaries of five faculty members and $227,000 for other administrative and event expenses said Peter Schiffer, vice chancellor for researchss.

The proposed cuts aim to reduce administrative costs while maintaining the integrity and reach of the programs provided by CAS.

“There are some efficiencies to be gained,” Schiffer said.

These cuts would reduce the number staff members and delegate those responsibilities to the salaried faculty.

“If you cut staff, you cut capacity,” said Susan Davis, communications professorss. “If you cut capacity, you’re cutting quality. It is just not possible to argue any other way.”

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