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Faculty Governance News

vol. 4.8

January 13, 2010

From the UNC Office of Faculty Governance
200-204 Carr Building
UNC-CH Campus Box 9170
Contact:  Anne M. Whisnant (

Faculty elections season opens; interest survey coming to your email January 19

With the dawning of the spring semester comes the time for nominations for candidates for the standing faculty committees and the Faculty Council.  These bodies are the backbone of Faculty Governance here, and their duties are spelled out in the Faculty Code of University Government.

The nominations process begins with our annual survey asking faculty members to indicate their interest in serving on one of the committees or the Council.  All members of the Voting Faculty will receive the survey by email on January 19, and you’ll have until January 25 to express your interest in serving on one or more of the committees or the Council.  Your responses to the survey will be a real help to the faculty Nominating Committee (made up largely of current chairs of the standing committees), which will put together a slate of candidates for all offices in early February.   The faculty elections will take place April 12-19.

If you have questions about the faculty elections process or want to discuss what’s involved in serving on a committee or the Council, please contact either Secretary of the Faculty Joe Ferrell ( or Anne Whisnant ( in the Faculty Governance office or call 962-1671.

In the 2009 faculty elections, 925 of 3,545 eligible faculty members voted, for a response rate of 26%.  This percentage represented an upswing from previous years, and we hope to encourage even greater participation this year!

Nominations due January 20 for 2011 Honorary Degrees

The faculty Committee on Honorary Degrees and Special Awards invites nominations for people to be considered for award of an honorary degree at commencement in the spring of 2011.  The deadline to submit a nomination is January 20, 2010.

Honorary degrees recognize people who have rendered outstanding service to humanity in the world arena, in our nation, in the American South, or in our state of North Carolina; people who have made outstanding contributions to knowledge in the world of scholarship; people whose talent and creativity in the world of the arts has enriched our lives; and people whose devotion to and support of our University merits our highest recognition.

Full information on how to make a nomination, along with a link to a list of past recipients, is here.

FAQ of the Week:  Who is on the Faculty Nominating Committee for 2010?

The Faculty Nominating Committee plays a key role in faculty governance here, as it is responsible each year for assembling a slate of candidates for the standing faculty committees and the Faculty Council.  As constituted under section 4-2 of the Faculty Code, the Nominating Commitee consists of “the chair of each of the standing committees established by this Article, or the chair’s designee, and four members of the voting faculty appointed by the chair of the faculty.”  This year’s committee members are listed here.

Go light on the coffee at the Faculty Commons! 

As readers of this newsletter know, the Office of Faculty Governance provides free coffee for faculty and their guests daily from 9:00 to 11:00 a.m. at the Faculty Commons at the Campus Y.  We’re delighted to be able to make this small benefit available to encourage faculty members to congregate and meet at this wonderful faculty space, and we’re glad people are enjoying it. 

Late last year, however, we noticed that bills for the coffee service were rising at an unsustainable rate, so we’ve had to restrict the coffee to five pots per morning.  We ask that those of you who take advantage of this service please be somewhat modest in your intake and gently remind students who may not understand the policy that they should purchase their coffee downstairs in the Y at the Blue Ram.

Tenure Task Force’s definitions of engaged scholarship are worth a close look

As the campus conversation about engagement continued last Friday with the fourth annual “Dialogue on Engagement,” sponsored by the Carolina Center for Public Service, it seemed important that a comprehensive report on campus tenure and promotion policies issued last spring by a faculty committee be more widely read. 

The report, written by the UNC Task Force on Future Promotion and Tenure Policies and Practices (chaired by Prof. Jane Brown from the School of Journalism and Mass Communication), reflected the outcome of months of conversation and careful deliberation by nearly fifty faculty members from across the campus.  It recommended that faculty engagement with the community beyond the university be valued during the tenure process, and it elaborated careful definitions of “engaged scholarship” and “engaged activities.”  Its work has the potential to greatly advance the campus conversation about how engagement can be recognized and rewarded in an academic setting.

You can read the report on the Provost’s website.  On engagement, see especially pp. 6-8.

Association for Women Faculty and Professionals workshop: “Taking Care of Yourself: Balancing Work and Wellness,” February 18

The UNC Association for Women Faculty and Professionals invites you to an event on “Taking Care of Yourself:  Balancing Work and Wellness,” February 18 at the Ackland Art Museum.  Susan Gaylord and Joanne Marshall will make presentations on mindfulness and yoga that will provide you with easy, hands-on instructions to integrate health into your work and personal life.  Following the program there will be a wine and cheese reception.  All are welcome!

Thursday, February 18, 2010
4 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Ackland Art Museum
101 S. Columbia St.

Susan Gaylord is director of the UNC Program on Integrative Medicine, Dept. of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (

Joanne Marshall is a distinguished professor in library science and a yoga instructor (

CHAT Festival to focus on digital arts and humanities, February 16-20; you must register to attend

The Institute for Arts and Humanities is sponsoring a major festival on campus February 16-20 to showcase and discuss the ways digital technologies are transforming the arts and humanities.  It will feature exhibits of student and faculty projects, lectures, discussions, and performances, and you have to register to participate in most of it.  See

You wouldn’t believe how many calls for prestigious award nominations and fellowships for faculty are currently open . . .

Here are several that we know about.  We can’t begin to discuss all of these in depth, but faculty members are eligible for all of them.  Check them out:

Faculty Governance Reading Room

Articles, books, or other resources of interest to faculty.  This week’s selection:

  • Professing to Learn: Creating Tenured Lives and Careers in the American Research University (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2009), by Anna Neumann.  Based on interviews with seventy-eight professors across various disciplines at five major American research universities, this book “explores university professors’ scholarly growth and learning in the years immediately following the award of tenure, a crucial period that has a lasting impact on the academic career. Some launch from this point to multiple accomplishments and accolades, while others falter, their academic pursuits stalled. What contributes to these different outcomes?” [Quotation is from the Johns Hopkins website.]And a related article by Anna Neumann at the Chronicle of Higher Education:  “Life With Tenure: Not What You Think” (10 January 2010) (free access on campus).

About Faculty Governance News

The Faculty Governance News is published every two weeks throughout the academic year by the Office of Faculty Governance.  Archived issues and the publication schedule for 2009-10 are available online here.  Information to be considered for inclusion should be sent to Anne Whisnant ( by Monday before an issue is scheduled to appear.

For more information on any of these items, please contact Anne Whisnant in the Office of Faculty Governance.

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