Strategy Three

Formalize a Transparent System of Shared Governance

Henderson has long had a form of shared governance in place, including faculty and staff senates and a student government association. Each of these groups is made up of representatives elected by their peers for specific terms. Each body also has a slate of elected officers, a governing constitution, and by-laws. There is also a handbook for each body that guides certain processes and procedures. Over the years, however, the system has lacked clarity and become muddled. There appears to be numerous areas where there is duplication of effort, often at cross-purposes, among the various governing bodies and university committees. There is also a lack of clarity regarding the authority of the governing bodies and the process within which each works. Frequently the various bodies are used only in a minimal advisory role rather than in the capacity of a governing body. Also, communication between the faculty/staff and administration has often broken down as has communication among the governing bodies and their constituents. There needs to be a thorough study of the role of each body and a vigorous overhaul of the systems in place. The governing bodies need to become substantially involved in policy making in their respective areas of concern.

Action and Elements

  1. A task force will be appointed by President Jones and tasked with clarifying a vigorous and clear process of shared governance based on the strategic plan.
  2. Beginning in the summer of 2014, the task force will examine the system of governance in place for all constituencies (faculty, staff, and student government) and make recommendations regarding keeping the current structures in place, amending the structures, or adopting a different model altogether.
    • Based on the model adopted, all university policies and procedures will be reviewed and amended as necessary.
    • All policies will be published in a centralized, web-based location with open access.
    • As part of the process, all university and governing body committees will be reviewed and restructured to eliminate overlap or redundancy and to develop a clear process of shared governance in the manner in which they operate.
  3. In the fall of 2014, based on review above, new or amended structures will be developed.
  4. The task force will review progress and publish their findings, which will direct their ongoing work.