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Faculty senate to select members of Pres. Advisory Committee next week

Published: November 13, 2009
Section: Front Page

The university faculty will select its members next week to represent the faculty in the search for a new president, as announced at last Thursday’s faculty meeting.

The positions on the Faculty Advisory Committee to the Presidential Search Committee will be run by an electronic election still being drafted.

The proposal now moving forward allows for all Arts and Sciences Schools to be represented with additional at large members.

“There will be eight members, and each faculty member will get three votes,” Prof. Sabine von Mering (GRALL), the Faculty Senate chair, said, “one vote for their school by the people in that school and two for the at large seats.”

Faculty members were able to nominate professors not in their departments, and von Mering received over 80 responses. Since some professors have declined, however, there will now be at most “seven or eight nominees for each seat,” or 56 to 64 people total nominated, she said.

The Advisory Committee will serve in addition to the faculty on the Search Committee itself and provide a broad, elected set of representatives for more open communication. “Obviously, we know about many of the main issues,” von Mering said. “We know we must have a new direction, and people really want to see change.”

For facilitating the transformation of what members want and what can be done, von Mering has drawn up a survey that will be attached on this week’s ballot.

“The Faculty Handbook permits the Senate to address faculty concerns, which can be brought directly [to the Senate] or at faculty meetings, but they also can be initiated by electronic means,” von Mering said.

The survey will help the Senate and the Advisory Committee on current faculty issues of most importance, and assist in the stated goal of a new direction.

As one of the goals of faculty on the Search and Advisory Committee, the faculty hopes to use its input for things that have lacked in the past.

“I think there’s a general consensus on campus that we need a change, we need a different kind of communication, more openness, and a more consultative leadership style,” von Mering said.