Sunday, March 14, 2010

Threats from the President

If He Gets a No Vote on Furlough Proposal

at the University of Minnesota

The bullying actions of President Bruinks have been noted on the FRPE site:

My friend and fellow alum comments further on this situation:

Near the end of this message the president threatens to make "deeper college and unit level cuts" if the faculty fails to approve a temporary reduction in its compensation.

[From the March 12 Bruininks' letter:

I cannot reduce faculty pay without an affirmative vote by the Faculty Senate. If there is not a vote in support of a reduction in pay for faculty, our budget plan going forward will necessarily include deeper college- and unit-level cuts, which will inevitably lead to additional job losses. ]

If the president is referring to the elimination of programs or departments, such an action would have to be taken in accordance with the Policy on Reorganization. The Faculty Senate can and should ensure that the administration follows the Policy on Reorganization rather than allowing the administration to make a unilateral decision and then appoint an "implementation committee" as in the recent case of the reorganization of the Graduate School.

From the Policy on Reorganization:

From the Preamble:

"In general both the Senate and its committees should be involved in any organizational or structural decision affecting an academic unit made at the level of the campus or college or across colleges. The provisions of this policy calling for reporting information are also intended to provide the Senate a broad overview of the changes in academic programs that are occuring in the various colleges and campuses."

Section I. Reorganization of Campuses and Collegiate Units

"1. The campus assembly (or analogous body) of an affected campus or college unit shall review and make recommendations on the . . . merger or elimination of existing collegiate units . . . . "

II. Reorganizaion Within and Across Colleges and Campuses

"1. Proposals to establish, eliminate, split, or merge collegiate academic departments . . . shall be reviewed by appropriate college goverance committees . . . .

"2. All proposals for the addition or deletion of undergraduate majors or degree programs shall be reported for information to the Committee on Educational Policy. . . ."


Michael W. McNabb
University of Minnesota B.A. 1971; J.D. 1974
University of Minnesota Alumni Association lifetime member

Sadly, this Administration has ignored these rules in the past and presumably will continue to do so unless the Faculty Senate takes strong objection.

These are foolish actions by the president and in the long run will harm the university.

But he is bailing as we go over the cliff.


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