Following are brief updates on the status of academic reorganization.
Votes so far
So far, 12 departments have voted on proposed schools. Overall, about 67 percent of the votes have been “yes,” 24 percent have been “no,” and 9 percent have been “abstain.”
Here’s a breakdown:
School of Biological Sciences
Microbiology: 4 yes, 0 no, 0 abstain
Plant biology: 8 yes, 0 no, 0 abstain
Zoology: 1 yes, 12 no, 1 abstain
School of Computing
Computer science: 12 yes, 0 no, 0 abstain
School of Earth Systems and Sustainability
Geography: 4 yes, 1 no, 0 abstain
Geology: 8 yes, 1 no, 0 abstain
School of Health Sciences
Allied Health: 10 yes, 0 no, 0 abstain
Rehabilitation: 8 yes, 2 no, 0 abstain
School of Human Sciences
Kinesiology: 3 yes, 4 no, 3 abstain
Social Work: 4 yes, 1 no, 0 abstain
Public Health: 4 yes, 0 no, 2 abstain
Agricultural Science, food and nutrition: 3 yes, 4 no, 3 abstain
Once all units in a proposed school have voted and plans are reviewed at the college level, the RMEs are forwarded to the Faculty Senate, the Graduate Council and Faculty Association in accordance with our outlined processes. You can see an update of where each school is in the process here.
We have received a faculty proposal for a College of Social Sciences and Humanities and understand that a proposal for a College of Communication, Design and the Arts is forthcoming. I appreciate the efforts of the faculty to develop and submit these proposals. The provost’s office will continue to be on point for managing the process to vet proposals and communication with faculty on their status.
The votes and the new proposals are all part of the feedback and give-and-take processes that continue to shape our reorganization.
We remain attuned to the ongoing feedback on the use of the term “departments.” Some faculty feel strongly that the term, especially in some fields, is important to disciplinary identity. I understand this view. However, as I have said earlier, the term “department” has a very specific meaning in university policy and in our collective bargaining agreement. I have also indicated that we are happy to work to address this terminology issue in compliance with existing bargaining and policy procedures.
To start this conversation, we reached out the Faculty Association with a proposal to collaborate on a Memorandum of Understanding that would allow us to use the term “department” instead of “division” within the context of the new school structures. The school structure would not change: departments would be nested within schools headed by a director who has fiduciary and administrative responsibility for the school.
The association has indicated that it would prefer to take this issue up during full collective bargaining, which begins later in the spring. While we were disappointed, we look forward to the opportunity to work on this issue in the future.