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  • Governance Investigations | AAUP
    final candidate Read more about College and University Governance University of Iowa College and University Governance Union County College This report describes severe departures from generally accepted standards of academic governance at Union County College in Cranford New Jersey and details how the administration sharply diminished the role and influence of the faculty in the college s governance system Read more about College and University Governance Union County College College and University Governance The University of Virginia Governing Board s Attempt to Remove the President This report documents a major breakdown in governance at UVA focusing on the role of the board of visitors and its rector Helen Dragas who initiated the effort to force the president s resignation It finds that the events at the university resulted from a failure by those charged with institutional oversight to understand the institution over which they presided and to engage with the administration and the faculty in an effort to be well informed Read more about College and University Governance The University of Virginia Governing Board s Attempt to Remove the President College and University Governance Idaho State University Report prepared by the Association s staff concerning the decision by the Idaho State Board of Education to suspend the operation and bylaws of the faculty senate at Idaho State University and to direct ISU president Arthur C Vailas to implement an interim faculty advisory structure Read more about College and University Governance Idaho State University College and University Governance Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Report concerning the action taken in summer 2007 by the board of trustees and the administration of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute to suspend the faculty senate and replace it with a transitional structure of faculty governance Read more about College and University Governance Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute College and University Government Antioch

    Original URL path: http://www.aaup.org/reports-publications/aaup-policies-reports/college-and-university-governance-reports (2016-02-13)
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  • Standing Committee and Subcommittee Reports | AAUP
    controversial cases involving college and university teachers Read more about Ensuring Academic Freedom In Politically Controversial Academic Personnel Decisions It s Not Over Yet The Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession 2010 11 Results of the AAUP s annual survey of full time faculty compensation Read more about It s Not Over Yet The Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession 2010 11 Tenure and Teaching Intensive Appointments Recommendations on stabilizing the faculty infrastructure by converting contingent faculty positions to the tenure track Read more about Tenure and Teaching Intensive Appointments No Refuge The Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession 2009 10 Results of the AAUP s annual survey of full time faculty compensation Read more about No Refuge The Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession 2009 10 Protecting an Independent Faculty Voice Academic Freedom after Garcetti v Ceballos Report examining the potential impact on academic governance of the Supreme Court Garcetti v Ceballos decision It recommends actions to be taken in both public and private colleges and universities to preserve academic freedom in governance even in the face of judicial hostility or indifference Read more about Protecting an Independent Faculty Voice Academic Freedom after Garcetti v Ceballos On the Brink The Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession 2008 09 Results of the AAUP s annual survey of full time faculty compensation Read more about On the Brink The Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession 2008 09 The Use and Abuse of Faculty Suspensions Report analyzing AAUP policy on the suspension of faculty members from teaching or research Read more about The Use and Abuse of Faculty Suspensions Where Are the Priorities The Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession 2007 08 Results of the AAUP s annual survey of full time faculty compensation Read more about Where Are the Priorities The Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession 2007 08 The Faculty Role in Regional Accreditation Report providing encouragement and practical information to faculty members who might wish to serve on regional accreditation teams Read more about The Faculty Role in Regional Accreditation Regional Accreditation Standards Concerning Academic Freedom and the Faculty Role in Governance Report compiles the principal standards currently employed by each of the seven regional accrediting commissions that relate to the faculty role in governance and to academic freedom Read more about Regional Accreditation Standards Concerning Academic Freedom and the Faculty Role in Governance Looking the Other Way Accreditation Standards and Part Time Faculty Report surveys six of the different regional accrediting organizations handbooks and selected statements relating to part time faculty Read more about Looking the Other Way Accreditation Standards and Part Time Faculty Institutional Accreditation A Call for Greater Faculty Involvement A report calling for greater faculty involvement in the accreditation of colleges and universities Read more about Institutional Accreditation A Call for Greater Faculty Involvement Financial Inequality in Higher Education The Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession 2006 07 Results of the AAUP s annual survey of full time faculty compensation Read more about Financial Inequality in Higher Education The Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession 2006 07 Historically Black Colleges and Universities Recent Trends Report discussing recent trends regarding Historically Black Colleges and Universities Read more about Historically Black Colleges and Universities Recent Trends Faculty Evaluation of Administrators Report by the Committee on College and University Governance on principles and recommended procedural standards concerning the evaluation of administrators The statement supplements a paragraph in Faculty Participation in the Selection Evaluation and Retention of Administrators 1981 Read more about Faculty Evaluation of Administrators Research on Human Subjects Academic Freedom and the Institutional Review Board 2006 report addressing aspects of the federal government s regulations for research on human subjects that constitute a threat to academic freedom Read more about Research on Human Subjects Academic Freedom and the Institutional Review Board The Devaluing of Higher Education The Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession 2005 06 Results of the AAUP s annual survey of full time faculty compensation Read more about The Devaluing of Higher Education The Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession 2005 06 Inequities Persist for Women and Non Tenure Track Faculty The Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession 2004 05 Results of the AAUP s annual survey of full time faculty compensation Read more about Inequities Persist for Women and Non Tenure Track Faculty The Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession 2004 05 Professors of Practice Report addressing a category of full time non tenure track faculty appointments known as professors of practice It recommends in accordance with Association principles that these faculty members be accorded tenure s protections Read more about Professors of Practice On Professors Assigning Their Own Texts to Students Statement by the Committee on Professional Ethics that addresses the practice of professors assigning their own texts to students Related institutional and organizational policies are also addressed Read more about On Professors Assigning Their Own Texts to Students Financial Exigency Academic Governance and Related Matters Report discussing AAUP policies concerning the role of the faculty in budgeting in good times and when an institution must deal with a financial crisis Read more about Financial Exigency Academic Governance and Related Matters Don t Blame Faculty for High Tuition The Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession 2003 04 Results of the AAUP s annual survey of full time faculty compensation Read more about Don t Blame Faculty for High Tuition The Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession 2003 04 Academic Bill of Rights Report discussing the Academic Bill of Rights at its potential impact on academic freedom Read more about Academic Bill of Rights Contingent Appointments and the Academic Profession Report examining the costs to academic freedom incurred by the current trend toward overreliance on part

    Original URL path: http://www.aaup.org/reports-publications/aaup-policies-reports/standing-committee-and-subcommittee-reports (2016-02-13)
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  • Audit Reports | AAUP
    AAUP The Redbook Journal of Academic Freedom AAUP Bookstore News AAUP in the News AAUP Updates For the Media Get Involved Upcoming Events Local Toolkit Issue Campaigns Find Chapters Conferences Start a Chapter I Need Help With Workplace Issues Understanding Terms and Abbreviations Responding to Financial Crisis You are here Home Reports Publications AAUP Policies Reports AAUP Policies Reports Academic Freedom and Tenure Investigations Governance Investigations Standing Committee and Subcommittee Reports Audit Reports View All Reports Academe Economic Status Report Compensation Survey Bulletin of the AAUP The Redbook Journal of Academic Freedom AAUP Bookstore AAUP Redbook The eleventh edition of the Redbook contains foundational AAUP policy documents as well as reports on new issues in higher education Buy yours now Audit Reports Agency Fee Audits Information about agency fee audits Read more about Agency Fee Audits AAUP Audit Reports Audited reports of the AAUP s financial statements from the past three years Read more about AAUP Audit Reports Trigger Warnings A current threat to academic freedom comes from a demand that teachers provide warnings in advance if assigned material contains anything that might trigger difficult emotional responses for students Learn more Join the AAUP As an AAUP member you join

    Original URL path: http://www.aaup.org/reports-publications/aaup-policies-reports/audit-reports (2016-02-13)
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  • View All Reports | AAUP
    Illinois at Urbana Champaign This report finds that the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign UIUC administration and the board of trustees of the University of Illinois violated principles of academic freedom when they withdrew a tenured faculty appointment that had been offered to Professor Steven Salaita The job offer was withdrawn after Professor Salaita made a series of impassioned Twitter posts expressing outrage about the war in Gaza Read more about Academic Freedom and Tenure The University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign Academic Freedom and Tenure University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center This report finds that University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center s administration violated commonly accepted academic standards when it terminated the appointments of two professors One professor had twelve years of service and the other had thirty Both had been recommended for renewal of tenure by the faculty personnel committee Read more about Academic Freedom and Tenure University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center Busting the Myths The Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession 2014 15 Last year the American Association of University Professors launched the One Faculty campaign to improve the job security and working conditions of contingent faculty Writing about the campaign in the November December 2014 issue of Academe Jamie Owen Daniel the AAUP s director of organizing asserted that shrinking public resources administrators random introduction of creative disruption agendas and the increasing possibility that state legislators will push for more right to work legislation can be resisted only by reclaiming the narrative through aggressive and unified faculties organized to speak together Read more about Busting the Myths The Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession 2014 15 On Trigger Warnings A current threat to academic freedom in the classroom comes from a demand that teachers provide warnings in advance if assigned material contains anything that might trigger difficult emotional responses for students Read more about On Trigger Warnings On Partnerships with Foreign Governments The Case of Confucius Institutes Allowing any third party control of academic matters is inconsistent with principles of academic freedom shared governance and the institutional autonomy of colleges and universities Confucius Institutes function as an arm of the Chinese state and are allowed to ignore these principles Read more about On Partnerships with Foreign Governments The Case of Confucius Institutes Defending the Freedom to Innovate Faculty Intellectual Property Rights after Stanford v Roche Tensions over control of the fruits of faculty scholarship have been slowly building since the 1980s and have intensified over the last three years There have long been differences of opinion over ownership of patentable inventions but recently a number of universities have categorically asserted that they own the products of faculty research And there is increasing institutional interest in declaring ownership of faculty intellectual property subject to copyright most notably evident in demands that faculty members cede ownership of online courses and other instructional materials to their universities a trend that began escalating in the 2012 13 academic year

    Original URL path: http://www.aaup.org/reports/view-all-reports (2016-02-13)
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  • Agency-Fee Audits | AAUP
    Faculty Work Workload Family Work Grading Graduate Students The Academic Bill of Rights Minority Serving Institutions Post Tenure Review Retirement Sexual Diversity Gender Identity Teaching Evaluation Tenure Women in Higher Education Reports Publications AAUP Policies Reports Academe Economic Status Report Compensation Survey Bulletin of the AAUP The Redbook Journal of Academic Freedom AAUP Bookstore News AAUP in the News AAUP Updates For the Media Get Involved Upcoming Events Local Toolkit Issue Campaigns Find Chapters Conferences Start a Chapter I Need Help With Workplace Issues Understanding Terms and Abbreviations Responding to Financial Crisis You are here Home AAUP Policies Reports Academic Freedom and Tenure Investigative Reports College and University Governance Reports Standing Committee and Subcommittee Reports Audit Reports View All Reports Back to Reports and Publications AAUP Redbook The eleventh edition of the Redbook contains foundational AAUP policy documents as well as reports on new issues in higher education Buy yours now Agency Fee Audits Because of the AAUP s 2013 restructuring into three interlocked entities there are now two organizations the AAUP and the AAUP CBC that engage in activities related to the collective bargaining and work related interests of members and non members and therefore two agency fee audits

    Original URL path: http://www.aaup.org/report/agency-fee-audits (2016-02-13)
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  • AAUP Audit Reports | AAUP
    Distance Ed Intellectual Property Accreditation Sexual Harassment Assault Academic Research Civility Conflicts of Interest Collective Bargaining Hiring and Promotions Discrimination Diversity Affirmative Action Ethics Faculty Work Workload Family Work Grading Graduate Students The Academic Bill of Rights Minority Serving Institutions Post Tenure Review Retirement Sexual Diversity Gender Identity Teaching Evaluation Tenure Women in Higher Education Reports Publications AAUP Policies Reports Academe Economic Status Report Compensation Survey Bulletin of the AAUP The Redbook Journal of Academic Freedom AAUP Bookstore News AAUP in the News AAUP Updates For the Media Get Involved Upcoming Events Local Toolkit Issue Campaigns Find Chapters Conferences Start a Chapter I Need Help With Workplace Issues Understanding Terms and Abbreviations Responding to Financial Crisis You are here Home AAUP Policies Reports Academic Freedom and Tenure Investigative Reports College and University Governance Reports Standing Committee and Subcommittee Reports Audit Reports View All Reports Back to Reports and Publications AAUP Redbook The eleventh edition of the Redbook contains foundational AAUP policy documents as well as reports on new issues in higher education Buy yours now AAUP Audit Reports Audited reports of the AAUP s financial statements 2014 Audit pdf 2013 Audit New C6 pdf 2012 Audit pdf Report Category Audit

    Original URL path: http://www.aaup.org/report/aaup-audit-reports (2016-02-13)
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  • Academic Freedom and Tenure: Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, A Supplementary Report on a Censured Administration | AAUP
    was being evaluated for promotion to full professorship when a district school superintendent and an LSU student filed complaints against her alleging sexual harassment as defined by LSU Her dean immediately suspended her from teaching and eventually despite a faculty hearing committee s unanimous recommendation against dismissal the LSU board of supervisors accepted the administration s recommendation that she be dismissed Buchanan was a highly productive scholar and teacher She had a strong publication record and an excellent record of participation in university service Buchanan was supported in her bid for full professor by outside reviewers the promotion and tenure committee and the deans of her college and the graduate school Buchanan s situation underwent drastic change on December 20 2013 when she received a communication from her dean stating that serious concerns had been raised about her inappropriate statements Buchanan was known for occasional use of profanity but any previous complaints apparently were not serious enough to become part of her performance record The administration s Office of Human Resource Management investigated and found her guilty of sexual harassment Subsequently a faculty hearing committee was formed in accordance with LSU s policies It found unanimously that removal with cause should not be contemplated though it also faulted Buchanan for having violated LSU s policies on sexual harassment by her use of profanity poorly worded jokes and sometimes sexually explicit jokes in her methodologies The committee found no evidence that this behavior was systematically directed at any particular individual however only that some individuals observing the behaviors were disturbed The report raises questions about three issues The first issue relates to the administration s immediate action to suspend upon learning that a school superintendent and a student teacher had accused Buchanan of making inappropriate statements Buchanan s eighteen year record

    Original URL path: http://www.aaup.org/report/academic-freedom-and-tenure-louisiana-state-university-baton-rouge-supplementary-report (2016-02-13)
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  • Academic Freedom and Tenure: Felician College | AAUP
    Faculty Grievance Committee which is explicitly charged with hearing grievances involving nonrenewal of appointments She told the attending chairs that the nonrenewals had been carefully considered with the assistance of legal counsel and that the decisions were airtight Ironically this department chair was one of the sixteen faculty members who received letters of termination at their homes later that evening Thus as faculty members confirmed to the investigating committee it was not until January 24 that department chairs who had not been consulted at all in the matter became aware of the termination letters Several affected faculty members have e mail messages from their chairs attesting to this fact Confirming the claims that the nonrenewals were completely unanticipated is a February 10 2014 letter that the college s Ad Hoc Committee on Shared Governance presented to the faculty assembly 4 The letter reacted to news of the terminations as follows We faculty opened our Felician e mail on January 26 and saw the first message a colleague had received a letter informing her that for reasons of financial exigency her contract would not be renewed for the following year Messages from other faculty with the same news followed and by Monday we knew that 16 of our colleagues had lost their jobs There had been no indication from the Administration that such an action was in the works the letters came out of the blue None of the 16 had been spoken with earlier about the decision though chairs had been told on Friday the 24th that some faculty were to be riffed they were not told who those faculty members would be The whole process was secretive sudden and shocking and understandably the faculty mood has been one of depression and anxiety The authors went on to cite at length AAUP recommended standards on termination of appointments under conditions of financial exigency and to ask the administration to address those standards by providing a hearing for all terminated faculty by demonstrat ing that Felician is truly in a state of financial exigency by providing full access to the pertinent financial documents and by explain ing how and why those terminated were chosen and whether any faculty were consulted in the decision Throughout spring 2014 Felician faculty members both those affected and those not affected asked repeatedly and in every possible venue for information about the criteria used to determine which faculty members had been selected for appointment termination In response administrative officers said repeatedly that they could not and would not disclose them IV The AAUP s Involvement Professor Robert Ingoglia who sought the AAUP s assistance on June 3 2014 was the first of the sixteen affected faculty members to approach the Association In the weeks to follow six more affected faculty members asked the AAUP s staff to include their cases when conveying the Association s official concerns to the Felician College administration When the investigating committee asked these individuals to explain their delay in contacting the AAUP one of them stated that she felt completely vulnerable between January and June 2014 when her appointment expired and feared that raising any issues about her nonrenewal would result in immediate termination Others expressed their belief based both on Sister Rosita s statement at the January 24 meeting and on the unwillingness of the administration even to engage in a discussion of the criteria used that the president would never reconsider her decision Others were too distressed to act alone and only later considered acting in concert with similarly affected faculty members A July 25 letter from the AAUP s staff to President Prisco focused on two issues the inadequacy of the procedures leading to the decision to terminate appointments for financial reasons and a failure to afford the protections of academic due process to these seven faculty members six of whom under Association supported standards were entitled through length of full time service to the procedural protections of tenure The letter urged that Professor Molnar with four years of full time service be either immediately reinstated to his appointment or paid six months additional salary in lieu of adequate notice and that the six faculty members who had served beyond the maximum probationary period be either immediately reinstated or provided settlements they found acceptable President Prisco responding by letter of August 14 stated that Felician College was an institution at which academic freedom flourishes but not through conforming to AAUP recommended principles and standards Instead she wrote Felician has always understood that we are free to implement and follow policies of our choice and have done so in this instance She asserted that the procedures followed in reaching the decision to terminate appointments were fair and treated the institution s valued faculty with the respect they have earned Most of the letter provided her account of what those procedures had entailed but did not directly address the Association s concerns and the urged resolutions The AAUP s staff responded on September 19 pointing out among other things that AAUP recommended standards were in fact among the policies and procedures set forth in the Felician faculty handbook to which President Prisco had referred On page 45 of the handbook begins the section entitled Faculty Rights and Privileges The first sentence reads Felician College affirms and is guided by the ideal that all faculty fulltime or part time are entitled to academic freedom as set forth in the 1940 Statement of Principles on Academic Freedom and Tenure jointly formulated by the American Association of University Professors and the Association of American Colleges The next five paragraphs of the handbook consist of verbatim quotations from the 1940 Statement for the purpose of defining according to the handbook what is meant by academic freedom at Felician College If the language on page 45 of the handbook does not constitute an endorsement of AAUP recommended standards on academic freedom it is not clear to us how else to characterize it The staff s letter also noted that the 1940 Statement referenced in the Felician faculty handbook provides that a fter the expiration of a probationary period teachers or investigators should have permanent or continuous tenure and their service should be terminated only for adequate cause except in case of retirement for age or under extraordinary circumstances because of financial exigencies and that the actions taken against six of the affected faculty members appeared to violate this provision The letter rejected President Prisco s suggestion that the context for the administrative decisions she provided in her letter of August 14 should have satisfied the AAUP s concerns and the concerns of the affected faculty asserting that if anything her information had only increased those concerns The letter closed by noting that the staff would be in further communication when the Association had determined its next course of action That action followed on October 24 when the staff wrote to inform President Prisco that the Association s executive director had authorized an investigation into the actions taken by the Felician College administration in separating the seven subject professors from service because these actions raised important issues relating to academic freedom tenure and due process as well as to the faculty s role in academic governance In subsequent correspondence between the college and the AAUP s staff the college was represented by Mr Angelo J Genova an attorney whose firm the college had retained as general counsel Mr Genova informed the staff that because the subject professors had retained an attorney the administration would no longer be communicating with the AAUP about their cases Questioning the authority of the AAUP to conduct its purported investigation he stated that the administration declined to participate and further did not condone the use of any College buildings facilities or resources by the AAUP for these self serving purposes The investigating committee did not find these subsequent communications between the college and the AAUP relevant to its inquiry with the exception of the staff s clarification to the Felician president and attorney that the AAUP s clients are not the individual professors but the principles and procedural standards that the Association has striven to implement over the course of a century On or around December 4 the Felician College e mail server began rejecting all e mail messages originating from the aaup org Internet domain with the message Sorry your e mail address has been blacklisted V Issues of Concern The investigating committee identified the following matters as of primary concern A Academic Due Process Under Regulation 1b of the AAUP s Recommended Institutional Regulations on Academic Freedom and Tenure all full time faculty appointments excluding special appointments clearly limited to a brief association with the institution are either tenured or probationary for tenure regardless of how the faculty member s institution may designate them While Felician College chose not to designate its full time faculty appointments as either probationary or tenured the college was clearly at odds with AAUP standards in denying the protections of academic due process to faculty members who were by these standards in the position of probationary or tenured faculty members Professor Molnar with four years of service was entitled under AAUP recommended standards to the protections of academic due process afforded to probationary faculty members as set forth in Statement on Procedural Standards in the Renewal or Nonrenewal of Faculty Appointments 5 These standards require that a recommendation not to renew an appointment be made by an appropriate faculty body in accordance with procedures approved by the faculty after the candidate has been afforded the opportunity to submit all relevant materials They also require that the faculty member be given timely notice of nonrenewal a written statement of the reasons for the decision if requested and the opportunity to appeal it to a duly constituted faculty body Professors Abboushi Barton Brey Ingoglia Monopoli and Raley all having served well beyond the seven year maximum period of probation were entitled to the procedural protections that accrue with indefinite tenure as set forth in the 1940 Statement of Principles on Academic Freedom and Tenure These protections require an administration to demonstrate adequacy of cause for dismissal in an adjudicative hearing of record before an elected faculty body B Financial Exigency The 1940 Statement and Regulation 4 of the Recommended Institutional Regulations on Academic Freedom and Tenure make clear that the services of faculty members with continuous tenure may be terminated only for adequate cause or in extraordinary circumstances for bona fide financial exigency or bona fide program discontinuance for educational reasons Regulation 4c defines financial exigency as a severe financial crisis that fundamentally compromises the academic integrity of the institution as a whole and that cannot be alleviated by less drastic means than terminating faculty appointments While the January 21 2014 letters of termination claimed that the cause of this decision was the exigency of the College s financial status as far as the investigating committee can ascertain President Prisco publicly used the words financial exigency for the first time on Monday January 27 2014 in a town hall meeting at which she confirmed that sixteen full time faculty members had received letters of nonrenewal According to faculty members interviewed the president did not mention the exigency of the college s finances in any subsequent meetings held that spring semester When asked about the terminations President Prisco referred to the need to reduce the faculty to student ratio because of financial pressures caused by enrollment declines and more specifically to the need to reduce the number of full time faculty members which she said was high in relation to that of comparison colleges She did not provide faculty members with any documentation for these claims In her August 14 response to the first letter from the AAUP s staff President Prisco mentioned a significant enrollment decline and described the financial situation as challenging and in need of stabilization She did not mention financial exigency The investigating committee does not question that enrollment declines creating financial pressures occurred in fall 2012 and again in fall 2013 From a high total enrollment of 2 301 students in fall 2011 enrollment fell by 192 students in fall 2012 and by an additional 176 students in 2013 At a May 20 2014 arts and science faculty meeting four months after the notices of terminations went out Vice President Fescoe explained that by October 2013 the college knew it was facing a 2 million shortfall Evidence demonstrating that this deficit constituted a severe financial crisis that fundamentally compromised the academic integrity of the institution however was not available According to faculty members the Felician administration did not routinely share detailed financial information with the faculty or even with department chairs and declined to provide it when requested In early March 2014 two months after the notifications of termination Dr William Back vice president for institutional advancement did not paint a dire picture of Felician s finances The March 6 issue of NorthJersey com quoted him as saying Here at Felician College we aren t in any kind of critical state as far as declining enrollment In fact our enrollment project ion s are trending upward from where we are currently After the terminations the administration published a Strategic Plan 2014 2019 with initiatives that included seeking university status adding doctoral programs renovating the student center to be finished spring 2016 completing the Education Commons building on the Rutherford campus and establishing a school for continuing education and professional studies The strategic plan certainly did not suggest that a condition of financial exigency was looming and at no time either before or after the terminations did the administration attempt to document that such a condition existed There is no evidence that the decline in enrollment constituted a severe financial crisis let alone one that fundamentally compromise d the academic integrity of the institution Any decisions based on the purported financial exigency were made without faculty involvement Casual reference to financial exigency in order to justify terminating faculty appointments assuredly does not meet the AAUP s recommended standards Even if Felician College in compliance with Regulation 4c of the Recommended Institutional Regulations had established that a severe financial crisis threatened its academic integrity that fact alone would not have provided sufficient justification for terminating faculty appointments The institution still had to show that it could not respond to the financial crisis by less drastic means than the termination of faculty appointments The administration made no attempt to demonstrate that the college could not alleviate the financial situation by less drastic means At the May 20 2014 meeting at which Vice President Fescoe revealed the 2 million shortfall faculty members asked him how much money the administration saved by releasing the sixteen full time faculty members His answer was 1 6 million suggesting that the reduction in full time faculty made up 80 percent of the 2 million shortfall There certainly was no discussion involving faculty members or deans about less drastic ways of responding to the enrollment decline than a 14 5 percent reduction in the college s full time faculty members In her August 14 letter to the AAUP s staff President Prisco revealed one reason for targeting full time faculty members for nonretention when she referred to a comparative study of full time faculty to student ratios at approximately 20 institutions of higher education in our region No one with whom the investigating committee spoke was aware of this study or of its finding that Felician was supporting one of the lowest ratios in the group second only to Princeton University President Prisco wrote Given its fiscal climate and financial challenges it was determined that this skewed below the norm ratio was no longer sustainable at Felician This data set affirmed the need to take a hard look at reducing the number of full time faculty positions Instead of responding to the enrollment declines in a way that would have preserved faculty positions the administration apparently had determined that an imbalance existed in the ratio of full time faculty to students and when enrollments and revenue fell that imbalance became a justification for reducing the number of full time positions The administration also departed from the AAUP s recommended procedural standards for identifying individuals whose appointments are to be terminated under conditions of financial exigency Regulation 4c 1 of the Recommended Institutional Regulations requires that t he faculty or an appropriate faculty body should exercise primary responsibility in determining the criteria for identifying the individuals whose appointments are to be terminated These criteria may appropriately include consideration of length of service The responsibility for identifying individuals whose appointments are to be terminated should be committed to a person or group designated or approved by the faculty As noted above in her August 14 2014 letter to the AAUP s staff President Prisco stated that the procedures followed in reaching the decision to terminate appointments were fair and treated the institution s valued faculty with the respect they have earned In fact the process did not involve faculty members in determining the criteria or in identifying the individuals whose appointments were to be terminated The twelve member prioritization committee mentioned earlier for example performed its task from August to December 2013 when it issued its report and disbanded Hence while this administratively appointed faculty committee was engaged in making recommendations that were never implemented the administration was independently drawing up its list of appointments for termination In his meeting with the investigating committee Dean Kubersky who watched the process unfold in fall 2013 emphasized that unfairness and lack of faculty involvement rendered it fatally flawed According to him the administration introduced the deans to the president s mandate to create a list around Thanksgiving 2013 when Sister Rosita asked them to identify faculty members whose appointments would be terminated The list of faculty members who were to receive nonrenewal notices was developedover several meetings Sister Rosita was the arbiter of the final list which may have existed by Christmas although the investigating committee does not know if this version matched the president s final one While he did attend all of these meetings Dean Kubersky told Sister Rosita and the president that he would not participate in this exercise except to provide the provost with what he called public information on the sixty six faculty members in his division When pressed by Sister Rosita and President Prisco to participate in identifying individuals to be laid off Dean Kubersky provided Sister Rosita access to complete faculty files including retention documents and any other correspondence Asked by Dean Kubersky if she had gone through those files in drawing up the list of faculty members in arts and sciences for nonrenewal Sister Rosita said she had not because adequate time to do so was lacking an appraisal with which Dean Kubersky agreed Dean Kubersky informed the investigating committee that he knew of no clear set of criteria that resulted in the list of names Also as far as he knew no one except the deans was aware that a list was being drawn up in late fall 2013 Dean Kubersky retired from Felician College effective at the end of January 2014 because in his own words he did not want to preside over a decimated and demoralized faculty Subject faculty members expressed deep appreciation for his actions calling them honorable and describing him as a man of integrity saying He pulled through for us in the end Dean Kubersky agreed completely with the sentiment expressed by some of the subject faculty members that it was unbearably sad to witness the effects of the terminations and of the way in which they were carried out at an institution like Felician College where so many in the academic community tried to live up to Franciscan values Faculty members were assured that the terminations were not tied to performance Confirming this the February 25 issue of NorthJersey com quoted Vice President Back as saying It s not that anybody did anything wrong or that they were poor performers The investigating committee reviewed recent evaluations for several of the subject faculty members and all were extremely positive The termination letters allude to the prioritization process asserting that it had assisted in identifying the strengths and limitations of each academic program and department but there is no evidence that the results of the prioritization process informed the decisions On the contrary departments rated in the top quintile philosophy computer science and mathematics lost faculty members despite high enrollments and in some cases heavy reliance on part time faculty members None of the subject faculty members was from departments in the lowest quintile making the administration s reference to the academic prioritization process in the nonrenewal letters puzzling The mathematics department ranked in the top quintile seemed particularly decimated for curricular purposes before the terminations it had seven faculty members three with PhDs in mathematics and afterward it had four faculty members one with a PhD Dean Kubersky confirmed to the investigating committee that the academic prioritization process was supposedly not intended to lead to terminations and that selection of appointments for termination had no connection to the results of that process The stated purpose of the prioritization process was to strengthen departments while the effect of the terminations he asserted was to weaken them As noted above the letters of termination did not in any way specify why particular appointments were selected Throughout spring 2014 Felician faculty members asked for an explanation of the criteria Administrators told the faculty that criteria existed but that they needed to remain secret that the faculty was not entitled to review the secret criteria but that the secret criteria were fair After a January 27 town hall meeting at which the president confirmed that sixteen faculty members had been sent letters of termination Professor Yvonne Raley one of the subject faculty members asked Sister Rosita why these individuals had been selected and Sister Rosita responded We thought some people would land on their feet C Terminal Salary or Notice The 1940 Statement and Regulation 8 of the derivative Recommended Institutional Regulations specify that full time faculty members beyond their second year of service selected for involuntary release whether through nonreappointment layoff or dismissal for cause excepting discharge for moral turpitude should receive twelve months of notice or at least one year of severance salary The sixteen affected Felician faculty members received only five months of notice D Felician College Policies The investigating committee identified the following provisions of the Felician College Faculty Handbook implicated by the administration s actions 1 Faculty Severance Policy The letters of termination state that the recipients might wish to refer to the Faculty Severance Policy found on page 67ff of the Faculty Handbook That policy enumerates three types of nonrenewal of appointment of which only one is relevant here Non renewal of appointment for administrative reasons is related to an administrative need of the College such as cancellation or redirection of a program declining enrollment financial exigency or over staffing If a reduction in faculty is planned a number of procedures are to be followed including the following A discussion as soon as possible among members of the Administration Division Dean Associate Dean and Department Chair of the affected department Mutual consideration of possible alternate assignments for affected faculty members Notification of affected faculty member s as early as possible however no later than the schedule outlined above except in cases of extreme financial exigency The relevant provision in the referenced schedule is Ordinarily full time faculty members with three or more years of service would receive a one year notification before the expiration of the appointment The committee s investigation confirmed that the administration of Felician College did not follow these mandated procedures As noted earlier no discussions that included a departmental viewpoint took place and department chairs along with the rest of the Felician faculty first learned who had received termination letters from e mail messages sent by the affected faculty members themselves beginning the day after they received their notices Certainly mutual consideration of possible alternative assignments for affected faculty members did not occur While the investigating committee heard that several of the sixteen affected faculty members had been rehired the administration made no special effort to explore current or anticipated alternatives at the college It was not enough to direct the affected faculty members to meet with Sister Rosita their dean and the director of human resources as was done in the nonrenewal letters Professor Ingoglia provided documentation of his attempts to obtain clarification on the handbook mandated mutual consideration of possible alternate assignments for affected faculty members He met with Sister Rosita Dean Kubersky and Ms Virginia Topolski director of human resources in late January to discuss an alternate assignment in the college During the meeting Ms Topolski said that she would get back to him In May four months later not having heard from her he wrote to Sister Rosita who directed him to contact Ms Topolski whose response one day later was pro forma and dismissive The investigating committee was told that a number of faculty positions at the time of the nonrenewals remained unfilled but the committee does not know if the administration decided to cut these unfilled positions and if not whether they would have been available for occupancy by the affected faculty members If these positions indeed were cut then full time faculty positions would have been reduced by more than 14 5 percent in fall 2014 For example one full time faculty member had announced his retirement from the philosophy department on January 8 2014 and another fulltime faculty member in the department resigned on January 16 2014 If these positions had been open then Professor Raley could have been retained if they were not then the philosophy department lost three full time positions No one discussed with Professor Raley the current or future hiring plans of the philosophy department Professor Abboushi had transferred from the School of Education to the School of Arts and Sciences in fall 2013 but the graduate program in teacher education in the School of Education where he had formerly served advertised for graduate faculty on the Felician website in fall 2013 In June 2014 another full time faculty member in the graduate program resigned His former program thus appeared to have had three full time vacancies Again it is not clear whether these positions were cut were reduced to part time positions or were filled by new full time appointees No one discussed with Professor Abboushi any current or future possibilities for another suitable appointment in the college The subject faculty members received five months of notice As mentioned earlier the Felician College faculty handbook mandates one year of notice except in cases of extreme financial exigency which as the committee has already determined did not exist The administration of Felician College therefore acted in disregard of the college s own severance policy 2 The Faculty Grievance Committee The responsibilities of the Faculty Grievance Committee outlined in Appendix T of the faculty handbook include hearing grievances on renewal of contract with such grievances being limited to allegations that College policies or procedures have been violated or that an administrative decision has been rendered unfairly or improperly The committee is an elected faculty body authorized to make recommendations that are binding if accepted by the involved parties If they are not accepted recommendations go to the president whose decision is final At no point did the administration refer the affected faculty members to the college s internal grievance process neither in the termination letters nor in conversations with them None of the sixteen faculty members chose to file a grievance with the college s committee Explanations for not having filed a grievance varied among the seven faculty members Professor Abboushi a past chair of the grievance committee said that once financial exigency had been declared he believed he had no grounds for an appeal One faculty member said she was in shock and felt like a throw away continuing to teach her five classes with the clock ticking down to June 20 Several of the faculty members believed that filing a grievance would be a waste of time and effort Why bother they said they asked themselves knowing that the president would render the final decision and that Sister Rosita as noted earlier had stated that the decisions were final and airtight On the committee s further questioning however it also became clear that they feared for their colleagues on the grievance committee who would have had to hear and rule on any grievance One wrote I was afraid that if my fellow faculty members found for me they would incur the wrath of the president Once I had been terminated fellow faculty members avoided me like the plague In spite of this I did not want anyone else to suffer This concern was not misplaced As late as May 2014 faculty members inquired of the vice president for finance if there was another list of faculty members whose appointments were to be terminated That not one of the sixteen affected faculty members sought redress through the internal grievance process speaks to the finality with which the termination decisions were conveyed and perceived as well as to the intense climate of fear that the sudden dismissals engendered 3 Faculty Emeritus Policy To be considered for emeritus status at Felician College a faculty member must have served full time at the institution for a minimum of ten years If in addition the candidate had received an earned doctorate and had attained the rank of full professor the bestowal of the honor was essentially automatic and according to the faculty handbook involved the Promotions Committee only in order to verify that the three requirements had been met Any faculty member including the candidate can initiate the process Professor Ingoglia possessed an earned doctorate became a full professor in 2008 and taught full time at Felician well over ten years During his nineteen years at the college in addition to teaching courses in history Latin and interdisciplinary general studies he had been director of the college s computer laboratories an assistant in the institutional research office a weekend librarian college webmaster assistant to the academic vice president and editor and publisher of the undergraduate and graduate catalogs He submitted the documentation for professor emeritus status to Sister Rosita on April 3 That same day she responded that she had already submitted his name to the Promotions Committee which she stated supported the application and that t echnically there should be no problem since his application met the criteria from the faculty handbook On June 23 three days after his last day as a Felician College faculty member Professor Ingoglia received an e mail message from Sister Rosita informing him as follows The president and board did not approve your request for emeritus status The only explanation provided to Professor Ingoglia for the denial of his application was that the president had decided not to grant him emeritus status Earlier Professor Ingoglia had been assured that the termination of his appointment as an active faculty member had had nothing to do with performance and in fall 2013 he had received perfect scores on his last retention evaluation He had been told that his appointment termination was attributable solely to the financial troubles of the college and yet the conferral of emeritus status which in his case should have been automatic was withheld While emeritus status can be seen as merely honorific it would have benefited Professor Ingoglia in his career and in his search for another position Since professor emeritus status included library privileges Professor Ingoglia could have continued to use the college library to engage in scholarship and the notation of emeritus on his curriculum vitae would have signaled to prospective employers that his termination had not been performance related He was clearly harmed by having been denied emeritus status Although the investigating committee cannot prove a direct connection Professor Ingoglia was the only Felician faculty member to be quoted in press accounts about the layoffs 6 It is difficult to see President Prisco s denial of emeritus status to Professor Ingoglia as anything other than retaliatory Not only did it violate the relevant provisions of the Felician College Faculty Handbook it was astonishingly petty and punitive E The Climate for Academic Freedom As has been noted earlier in this report all fulltime faculty members at Felician College serve on renewable term appointments with no provision for indefinite tenure Under the faculty handbook a Faculty Retention Evaluation Process divides the full time faculty into two groups probationary faculty members who have served fewer than three years and established faculty members who have served beyond three years Probationary faculty members are evaluated annually until after three years of service they achieve established status Thereafter full time faculty members undergo evaluation every three years While not officially seen as tenure the milestone of established status had meaning for the faculty members with whom the investigating committee spoke They considered it a reciprocal commitment between established faculty members and the college It was clear to the investigating committee that faculty members trusted that the college would honor this reciprocal commitment based on their belief that the Franciscan values that ostensibly guided the institution would also ensure the protections of academic freedom and academic due process Unfortunately once President Prisco took office this trust became misplaced Despite serving on renewable term appointments faculty members with whom the investigating committee spoke felt that before President Prisco took office they could question decisions made by the administration and the administration would respectfully listen and respond Professor Ingoglia said that he was not afraid to speak his mind on any issue prior to President Prisco s tenure and that his outspokenness sometimes resulted in the administration s changing its position on issues It appears that some faculty members played the critical role of loyal opposition and felt safe doing so Professor Molnar recounted his dean s informing him that established faculty status meant that it was extremely rare to lose one s job it was this sense of security that led faculty members to speak freely While decision making was clearly top down at Felician faculty members described the college as a place where they were free within bounds to express their views and ask questions Faculty members however did express frustration with being left in the dark about enrollment financial and building planning even before President Prisco took office In these areas they often felt deprived of enough information even to question the administration s decisions A faculty member reported having inquired at an open meeting about enrollment targets and after the meeting being called to task by a vice president who told him that it was inappropriate for a faculty member to ask such a question Since Dr Prisco assumed the presidency the climate for academic freedom has steadily chilled Faculty reported that throughout spring 2014 after the sixteen terminations the hallways became silent a stark contrast to the previous lively interactions among faculty colleagues and questions at faculty meetings ceased Most faculty members at Felician were apparently afraid to express and did not expect colleagues to express views of which the administration may not have approved As noted earlier some current faculty members who declined to meet with the investigating committee said they did so because they feared retaliation Several of the affected faculty members told the investigating committee that living and teaching Franciscan values had once been genuine at Felician and that people had been kind and respectful to each other As for the present in the words of one Prisco broke that culture The investigating committee heard remarkable

    Original URL path: http://www.aaup.org/report/Felician (2016-02-13)
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