The Faculty Hearing and Appeals Committee (FHA) consists of five tenured members of the full–time faculty. The Committee of the Whole elects to the committee one member from each of the Divisions and one alternate, representing the faculty–at–large, with no more than one member from an Academic Department. The committee elects its own chair.
Members of the Faculty Personnel Committee are ineligible to serve on this committee and any member personally involved in a case under consideration must absent him/herself from the deliberations. The elected alternate shall then participate in the deliberation of the case.
It shall be the responsibility of the FHA to hear and make recommendations on faculty appeals concerning significant personnel issues where a substantive violation of the normal operating process is alleged. In each case, an effort shall be made to resolve differences with the assistance of the Provost, if appropriate, prior to initiating a formal appeals process. If the differences cannot be resolved, the Provost will convene the FHA which will at that time elect a chair. Appeals regarding appointment and tenure may only involve substantive procedural irregularities or application of improper criteria. Substantive violations are defined as serious considerations that could result in a different outcome in the reappointment process. The evaluation of the merits of appointment and tenure lie with the process of reappointment (outlined below).
Prior to the convening of the Hearings and Appeals Committee the appellant will prepare:
- a brief description of the events leading up to the appeal and/or the situations providing its context
- an account of the nature of the appeal which specifies what it is the faculty member is grieving and the reasons he/she considers it an injury.
- reference to the policies or procedures in the Faculty Handbook which have allegedly been violated.
Normally the faculty member shall be notified within one month by the committee chair from receipt of the appeal whether the Committee considers it to fall within the range of its jurisdiction and, hence, whether it will hear the case or not.
If the Committee decides to hear the case, it may require further information from concerned parties and, consequently, may wish to call the faculty member as well as others involved for a hearing.
The findings of the Committee shall be conveyed to the President, the faculty member and all other involved parties in the form of a judgment about the merits of the appeal together with any recommendations for the action that the Committee deems warranted. Final disposition of the grievance rests with the President.
The Faculty Hearing and Appeals Committee also hears cases involving faculty discipline according to the procedures specified in the Faculty Handbook.
All deliberations and conclusions of the Committee shall be held in the strictest of confidence with the exception of those most directly involved.
The Faculty Hearing and Appeals Committee shall meet as needed.