March 19, 2018
Topic: Campus News
The Senate Advisory Committee on University Affairs is taking steps to add members in order to ensure the Flint and Dearborn campuses will always be represented on the executive arm of central faculty governance.
SACUA approved a resolution earlier this month that would increase its membership from nine to 11. Six members voted for the measure and three abstained.
SACUA Chair Robert Ortega said the measure must be considered by the Senate Assembly and then the full Faculty Senate. Because SACUA's composition is specified in the Board of Regents' Bylaws, changing it would also need regent approval.
It has not been determined when the resolution will be brought before those bodies for consideration.
Ortega, associate professor of social work, said that if the measure is approved by all the necessary bodies it would be in effect for the 2019 SACUA elections.
According to current regents' bylaws, SACUA can have no more than three members from LSA, no more than two from the College of Engineering and from the Medical School, and no more than one from any other school or college.
Increasing the committee's size from nine members to 11 would enable it to guarantee positions for UM-Dearborn and UM-Flint without reducing the number of seats currently available for other schools or colleges.
Under the current election process, SACUA membership is staggered. Each year, the Senate Assembly elects three new members to three-year terms. Ortega said an election process to incorporate the additional members would be developed if the Faculty Senate approves the proposal to enlarge SACUA.
Ortega said the proposed change is driven by a desire to be more inclusive and to ensure each campus has a voice in central faculty governance. He said the change would offer the opportunity for the concerns of faculty governance on each of the campuses to be discussed and presented.
Increasing the size of SACUA to accommodate guaranteed seats for UM-Dearborn and UM-Flint would allow those campuses to have a voice in deliberations on the Ann Arbor campus, especially in regards to issues that would potentially affect them as well, he said.