A More Inclusive Senate

On August 29, 2018, the results of the tenure-line faculty vote on the changes to the Faculty Senate Constitution were announced: tenure-line faculty voted, 323-66, to approve the proposed changes.

Those changes went into effect immediately.  The next departmental census (Spring 2019) will be calculated including all faculty through full-time equivalents (FTEs), and all full-time faculty are now eligible to serve in the Senate.

You can see the email announcing the passage of the changes here:

The Task Force thanks everyone on campus for their participation in this journey.  We hope to continue to have conversations around issues of shared governance and creating even more inclusive environments for all faculty, staff, and students at the university.

Letter to the University Community

In September 2016, a group of non-tenure-track faculty (NTTF) began meeting with a single goal: gaining access to shared governance for NTTF.

For just over three hours on April 10, 2018, the Faculty Senate discussed proposed amendments to its Constitution and Bylaws.  The line-item changes agreed to during that meeting describe a more inclusive Senate than the current one.  If these changes are affirmed in further votes within the Senate and by tenure-line faculty, all faculty members, regardless of their rank or campus, would be formally recognized as contributing to our academic community, and full-time NTTF would be allowed to serve on the Senate.

We eagerly await the confirmation of these changes that will create a strong, unified Faculty Senate.

As we anticipate that confirmation, the Task Force for NTTF & Shared Governance wants to thank our colleagues across campus for their involvement in the process toward progress.  The conversations we have had, while difficult at times, have resulted in better awareness of the labor of all university faculty, especially that of our more vulnerable contingent faculty.  This awareness, alongside the more inclusive Faculty Senate that will soon take shape, will strengthen the university as a whole.

We are excited about the opportunity for NTTF to play a meaningful role in envisioning and creating our university’s future, and we are grateful to our colleagues for examining, refining, and supporting our cause – and for soon warmly welcoming NTTF to the Senate.

 

The Task Force for Non-Tenure-Track Faculty & Shared Governance
April 20, 2018

Upcoming Events

The Task Force for Non-Tenure-Track Faculty & Shared Governance is co-sponsoring two upcoming events with the Sarah Isom Center for Women and Gender Studies.

Wednesday, March 21st
Shared Governance Is a Feminist Issue
12 pm, Lamar 555

Members of the Task Force for Non-Tenure Track Faculty & Shared Governance (Dr. Angela Green and Sarah Wilson) will share how experiences from their work highlight the feminist principles that support their efforts and Dr. Neal Hutchens (Professor and Interim Chair of Higher Education) will explore the history of how shared governance, (non)tenure lines, and gender/sex faculty ratios have intersected over the past century.

Wednesday, March 28th
Scaffolding the Ivory Tower: A Presentation on Work by the U.S. Government Accountability Office on the Size, Characteristics, Compensation, and Work Experiences of Contingent Faculty
1pm, Lamar 323

Presenter Michael Kniss will discuss an October 2017 report by the U.S. GAO that examined various issues related to contingent faculty.

We hope you can join us at one or both events.

Statement on Non-Tenure-Track Faculty and Shared Governance

The statement below was collaboratively drafted by two tenure-line faculty members and a member of the Task Force for Non-Tenure-Track Faculty & Shared Governance.

If you are a faculty member — of any rank or position: tenure- or non-tenure-line, full- or part-time — at the University of Mississippi and would like to add your signature to the statement, please fill out this Google Form. We will update this document with new signatures as we receive them.

If you don’t have a Google account, which is required to fill out that Form, you can email your full name, title, and department (or unit) to the Task Force Chair.

The statement and its signature list was published on Friday, February 23, 2018 by The Daily Mississippian.

It was also published on Sunday, February 25, 2018 by The Oxford Eagle.

NTTF Fall 2017 Census Survey Data

At the end of the Fall 2017 semester, the Task Force emailed a survey link to all university faculty in non-tenure-track positions.  The first email was sent on November 15, 2017; a follow-up, reminder email was sent on December 5, 2017.

We received responses from 26.2% of those who received the emails.  The results indicate that NTTF at the university are actively engaged in both research/scholarship and departmental/university service — but they also have varying experiences with access to and participation in shared governance at the departmental levels.  Perhaps most importantly, however, the NTTF who responded to the survey overwhelming indicated being open to the idea of serving on the Faculty Senate if given the opportunity:

  • Yes: 39%
  • Maybe: 38%

These and other data points from the survey results are available in this PowerPoint presentation.