The University of Michigan has revised its policy on emeritus and emerita status for retired faculty members to include, for the first time, a process to revoke that status for misconduct or other compelling circumstances.
The revised emeritus title policy was outlined at the July 15 Board of Regents meeting. This change, effective immediately, is part of a broader outline of steps the university is taking to address matters of sexual misconduct.
“As we work to create a harassment- and discrimination-free campus culture, it is important to provide clear standards and procedures for everyone,” said Susan M. Collins, provost and executive vice president for academic affairs. “This change aligns the policy and practice for emeritus/emerita faculty members with the expectations for the entire community.”
The policy changes outlined in the Standard Practice Guide 201.80 apply to all faculty members from the three U-M campuses who have been granted the emeritus title by the Board of Regents.
Faculty members with emeritus status are entitled to attend meetings of the Faculty Senate, march in a position of honor in academic processions, use university facilities, represent the university at academic ceremonies of other institutions, and take part with faculties in all social and ceremonial functions of the university. Emeritus faculty also are eligible for the same benefits that accrue to all employees who have officially retired from the university.
In addition to the policy change, the university also developed a procedures section explaining the process for the revocation, which can be initiated by the dean, the provost, the chancellors of the Flint or Dearborn campuses or the president.
According to the policy, the final recommendation to revoke emeritus status rests with the president, and the final decision whether to revoke the status rests with the Board of Regents. If the recommendation is made to revoke the status, it will include supporting rationale and will be communicated to the individual, provost or chancellor as appropriate, and the dean of the affected school or college.
The affected faculty member will have an opportunity to provide written input prior to the president’s final recommendation to revoke emeritus status.