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The Baruch College Faculty Handbook

Guidelines for Department Chairs

Last updated on 12/18/08

Memorandum to:  Baruch College Faculty

Kathleen Waldron, President
James McCarthy, Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs
David Birdsell, Dean of the School of Public Affairs
John Elliott, Dean of the Zicklin School of Business
Jeffrey Peck, Dean of the Weissman School of Arts and Sciences

Re:  Guidelines for the Baruch College Presidents to recommend to CUNY Board of Trustees the names of candidate for Department Chair Appointments at Baruch College and notification to academic departments.

Date:  December 17, 2008

In order to clarify some procedural issues that have arisen this past year with respect to the naming of academic department chairs, we have reviewed our current process for recommending elected department chairs to the CUNY Board of Trustees.  Our review indicated a need to be more specific with the timing of actions so that Baruch College will meet the CUNY Board of Trustees deadlines and that the administration will have sufficient time for review and notification to the candidates and the departments.

In addition, Dean Elliott, Provost McCarthy, and President Waldron met with the members of the Management Department in September 2008 at which time we indicated our intent to review procedures.

This memo assumes all procedures specified in the Baruch College Charter, the Bylaws of the Board of Trustees of the City University of New York, the PSC contract, and all CUNY procedures and guidelines are followed, including Chancellor Goldstein’s memo on department chair evaluations (dated October 6, 2000)

The revised guidelines are as follows:

  1. A written annual performance evaluation of an incumbent academic department chair will be provided by the Dean to the Provost and President of the College in accordance with the Chancellor’s memo on department chair evaluations no later than April 15th of each year. (see Chancellor Goldstein’s memo on department chair evaluations, dated October 6, 2000).
  2. The Dean of the School where the Academic Department Chair elections occur will assure that the Provost and President of the College are notified of the results of the election in writing no later than 48 hours after election results are reported by the appropriate Academic Department usually during the first week of May.
  3. If there are any objections to the electoral process a written objection shall be provided to the Dean and the Provost who will attempt to resolve the objection within 5 days.  The Provost will notify the President of the resolution of the objection or lack thereof in writing within 48 hours of trying to resolve the objection.  If a resolution cannot be obtained, the President will meet with the appropriate parties to discuss the issue.  This will occur no later than 10 days following the election.
  4. Once the election for a new chair has been successfully held, the President will receive recommendations for the Academic Department and provide a speedy response to the candidate and the Academic Department as to the President’s acceptance or rejection of the election.  Notification to the Dean, Provost, Academic Department and to the elected candidate of the President’s intent to forward a positive recommendation to the CUNY Board of Trustees will take place within two weeks of the election.  It is expected that the President usually will favorably respond to a duly conducted faculty election.
  5. To insure continuity in department leadership, the President needs to make a recommendation to the CUNY Board of Trustees no later than the last week in May for consideration at the June Board meeting.
  6. If for any reason the President decides not to recommend a candidate to the CUNY Board of Trustees the President will so inform the candidate and the Department in writing within 14 days of an election and certainly before the end of the spring term so that sufficient time exists to follow CUNY guidelines as to election of department chairs. (see relevant excerpt from the CUNY Board of Trustees Bylaws - Section 9.1)
  7. A decision on the part of the President not to accept the result of a departmental election may occur as allowed in the CUNY By-Laws but is expected to be rare.  The President may elect to not reappoint an incumbent chair when the Dean and/or Provost have recommended against reseating a chair on the basis of performance issues as documented in the annual performance review.  The President may elect to not appoint a chair if the candidate holds another position of significant and time-consuming responsibility such as director of a center or institute at Baruch College or other such entity.