Provost update for June 2018

06/14/2018

Provost Update
June 14, 2018

As a follow up to a suggestion by the University Council Communication Committee, here is another update so that all faculty, chairs/directors and deans have the same information on matters of importance to our academic mission. If anyone has other areas that might be addressed in future communications, please email them to provost@uakron.edu for consideration. View previous Provost Updates here.

 

Faculty Hiring

Please join me in welcoming our new faculty colleagues for the upcoming academic year (AY) 18-19:

We also have a couple letters of offer which are still being negotiated.

In addition, the following visiting faculty searches are currently authorized for AY 18-19:Music, Communication, Statistics, Accounting, Finance, Marketing, Economics, Curricular and Instructional Studies, and Electrical Computer Engineering.

Additional faculty searches will be authorized for AY 19-20 following the same process used since AY17-18, which involves each dean bringing forward a list of college priorities in rank order, with rationale, to be shared and discussed amongst the deans. In this way, the reasoning behind the final allocation of funds is known to all deans, rather than there being any mystery associated with position authorizations. We have finalized these discussions, and final decisions will be communicated soon.

 

Guidelines for Retention/Promotion of Non-Tenure Track Faculty

There has been a lot of confusion about the guidelines for Retention/Promotion of Non-Tenure Track faculty. Download the MOU designed to bring some clarity to this topic.

 

RTP and Merit Guidelines and Commercialization Issue

Faculty were asked to review their current RTP and merit guidelines to ensure they are up-to-date with respect to relatively recent pedagogical advances in their respective fields, open source publishing, etc.

The new law about providing potential options for tenure via “commercialization” should also be addressed by each unit. If faculty find that their guidelines are fine and do not need revised, that is acceptable, but a record of that BUF decision is needed. Most units have completed these reviews, but some have not. The latter units need to comply with this request, as the Board of Trustees must review our policy on faculty tenure to confirm it meets the intent of the law.

 

Reasonable Assurance

We worked with our Office of General Counsel and outside counsel to revise the existing reasonable assurance letter given to part-time faculty so that we may better comply with the provisions of the Ohio Revised Code. Going forward, the procedure should be consistent across the colleges.

The letter is available here.

 

Commencement

During seven ceremonies in May, over 3,300 Spring and Summer graduates participated in Commencement. We are considering moving to one large undergraduate/graduate ceremony next Spring in InfoCision Stadium – more to come on this topic. The December 2018 ceremonies will be in EJ Thomas on Dec 15th at 10 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.

 

Convocation

Please join us for the official welcome of the incoming class, New Student Convocation. Mark your calendar for August 24, at 11:30 a.m. A location will be announced in the coming weeks. Hope to see you there.

 

Office of Academic Affairs Reports to the Board of Trustees

Here are the reports that were presented to the Academic Issues and Student Success Committee of the Board on June 4, 2018:

Curriculum Board Report June 2018
UA Strategic Completion Plan
Office of Admissions Board Report June 2018
Research & Scholarly Activities Board Report June 2018
Student Affairs Board Report June 2018
IT Board Report June 2018