The Faculty Senate voted last week to expand the University of Michigan’s central faculty governance system to include more than 2,800 clinical professors, archivists, curators and lecturers.
The final step in approving the change lies with the Board of Regents, which will be asked at a future meeting to amend the Regents’ Bylaws describing Senate membership.
If regents approve the change, the Faculty Senate, also referred to as the University Senate, effectively will increase its size by about two-thirds.
The Senate voted on the resolution to expand its membership via electronic ballot June 1-3. Of the 1,671 Faculty Senate members who cast ballots, 1,082 favored the amendment, 567 opposed it, and 22 abstained.
“I want to congratulate all members of the University Senate for the thoughtful and deliberate conversations we’ve had leading to today’s result. Pending Regental approval, I welcome all the newest members of the University Senate, and I look forward to our collective contributions to faculty governance,” said Faculty Senate Chair Tom Braun.
The Faculty Senate currently includes more than 4,269 tenured and tenure-track instructional faculty, research faculty, librarians, deans and executive officers from the Dearborn, Flint and Ann Arbor campuses, including Michigan Medicine.
According to the Faculty Senate Office, U-M has approximately 1,810 clinical professors, archivists and curators, and about 1,056 lecturers covered by the resolution — those with at least a 50% appointment as lecturers I, II, III or IV.
The resolution also increases the Senate Assembly, the legislative arm of U-M’s faculty governance system, from 74 to 77 members elected by schools, colleges, other academic units, and the Flint and Dearborn campuses.
The increase permits the creation in the Senate Assembly of a “library” unit, which will include librarians, archivists and curators from all three campuses. This new unit will be apportioned the three new seats without changing the current apportionment of seats within the Senate Assembly. Each unit will be limited to 17 Senate Assembly members.
The Faculty Senate is the largest of three components in U-M’s central faculty governance system. The others are the Senate Assembly and the Senate Advisory Committee on University Affairs, the system’s nine-member executive arm.