Role of Faculty in University Governance


2.2.1  Authority and Responsibility of the Faculty    The Board of Visitors has designated the President as the chief executive, administrative, and academic officer of the University of Mary Washington, with responsibility for proposing policies and programs for the University, as well as responsibility for their effective implementation upon approval by the Board. Consistent with these responsibilities, the President has delegated the following authority to the faculty of the University:

.1 to determine academic offerings consistent with the established mission of the University;

.2 to determine the requirements for all degrees offered by the University;

.3 to recommend types of degrees and candidates for all such degrees;

.4 to formulate general admissions policies for the University;

.5 to enact and to enforce academic regulations for students in matters of attendance, examinations, grading, scholastic standing, honors, and awards;

.6 to design and to monitor the annual faculty evaluation system;

.7 to recommend policies concerning faculty welfare; and

.8 to develop and to supervise a committee system for the orderly exercise of the authority that has been delegated to it.

2.2.2  Final Authority of Faculty Action    Actions of the faculty may be binding or they may be advisory to the President, Provost, deans, or other administrative officials. Most actions of the faculty are advisory. However, where the President has delegated specific authority to the faculty as stipulated above, actions of the faculty are binding unless overridden by the President or the Board of Visitors.

2.2.3  Constraints on Faculty Action    Financial constraints, the time element, and the policies of external groups, bodies, and agencies having jurisdiction over the University may set limits to the exercise of the above authority. In particular, such limitations may result from the provisions of state and federal law, Executive Orders of the Governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia, policies of the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia, accreditation standards of the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, and policies of the Board of Visitors.

2.2.4  Action by the President in Areas of Authority Delegated to the Faculty    Though the President can delegate authority, he or she cannot escape responsibility as the Board of Visitors holds him or her accountable for the total welfare of the University. The President therefore must reserve the right not only to initiate action affecting the above but also to veto any action taken by the faculty. Should the President, however, take final action in an area of faculty authority prior to a formal recommendation from the faculty, or exercise the veto prerogative, he or she will communicate the reasons for such action to the University Faculty Council either at the next University Faculty Council meeting or earlier by electronic mail. If the University Faculty Council is unpersuaded by the President’s reasons, it may by majority vote at a subsequent meeting of the University Faculty Council represent and explain the faculty position to the Executive Committee of the Board of Visitors.

Note: Sections 2.3.1 through as written below were approved by the UFC on February 15, 2011 and circulated to the Colleges for approval.  As reported at the UFC meeting on March 15, 2011, the Colleges voted to approve these sections.