December 29, 2017

Dear Faculty Colleagues,

As we welcome 2018, I want to wish everyone a peaceful and productive new year. I also want to reflect on recent activities of faculty governance and thank the many faculty who volunteer their time through this venue to make UNC-CH a better place.

The past six months have been exceptionally busy for the Faculty Council, our committees and the Faculty Assembly. The Faculty Council advised the administration on a number of important issues related to  the ability of centers and institutes to engage in legal activities Silent Sam DACA-eligible students and free speech. We also commended our colleague, Professor Dan Reichart, for his contributions to the University and his bravery while trying to protect the Davie Poplar. We wish him a full and speedy recovery.

Our Faculty Executive Committee has been meeting frequently with our new provost, Bob Blouin, and providing feedback on the role of faculty in administrative and budgetary advising. We’ve heard presentations on a proposed new budget model, improvements to HR hiring processes and UNC’s new web design that will debut in January. We are also working closely with local and system-wide Faculty Assembly representatives on issues of common concern to all campuses. Faculty Assembly continues to watch a number of policy developments, and our delegates maintain close communication with faculty constituents across the system.

The Chancellor’s Advisory Committee has been meeting regularly with the chancellor to strategize on how to best serve as an advisory group and represent faculty interests. It is also providing input on the University’s strategic plan, The Blueprint for Next.

A special thanks goes out to our faculty who serve in less visible, but indispensable roles on our many other standing committees, as well as to all involved in the General Education Curriculum review. We will continue to hear updates on the proposed new curriculum as it is discussed during future Educational Policy Committee and Faculty Council meetings.

We expect to hear updates from many committees at our Faculty Council meetings this spring. I invite you to attend and encourage you to get involved by filling out our annual Faculty Governance Interest Survey, which was emailed to you last week. Two more reminders will be sent to your email with your unique survey link before the January 12 deadline.

While our faculty governance bodies aspire to represent as many faculty as possible, we realize that differences of opinion exist and wish to respect these differences. If you feel that your voice has not been heard, please contact us as important issues arise and consider serving in faculty governance.

I look forward to all we will accomplish together in the new year!

Sincerely,

Leslie V. Parise
Chair of the Faculty
Department Chair of Biophysics and Biochemistry

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