Last updated August, 2022.
USM Constituent Institutions
Salisbury University is a member of the University System of Maryland (USM). In addition to Salisbury University, constituent institutions in the University System of Maryland include:
USM Regional Higher Education Centers:
USM Bylaws, Policies and Procedures
The University System of Maryland (USM) is governed by a Board of Regents and all relevant Board of Regents policies apply to Salisbury University.
The Board of Regents (BOR) of the USM has the responsibility for managing the System under Title 12 of the Education Article of the Maryland Annotated Code. To carry out this responsibility the Board has developed regulations for the System and published these in the document titled Bylaws, Policies and Procedures of the Board of Regents: University System of Maryland.
The President and the administration of Salisbury University manage the institution by implementing institutional policies and procedures that reflect both the requirements of the USM BOR and the unique character of Salisbury University. Salisbury University’s policies and procedures are presented within this SU Faculty Handbook, the University’s Policies webpage, the Human Resources webpage, and other documents such as the Faculty Senate Bylaws and Academic Catalog. USM BOR policies are referenced in each of these resources as appropriate.
SU Policy on Faculty Membership in the Council of University System Faculty
As members of the University System of Maryland, Salisbury University’s faculty send institutional representatives to the Council of University System Faculty (CUSF). The most current policy of the Constitution for the Council is found on the USM’s website.
Salisbury University’s Mission and Values
Salisbury University’s current Mission Statement was adopted in 2014 and revised in 2019 to reflect our change in campus structure. Our Values and the SU Promise also are important to the campus community.
On November 8, 2022, Salisbury University’s Faculty Senate approved the following statements regarding diversity, equity, and inclusion:
General Diversity Statement: Diversity, equity, and inclusion are fundamental to Salisbury University’s mission and are critical to Salisbury University’s achievement of academic excellence. Faculty, staff, and students are expected to commit to creating an environment that facilitates inquiry and self-expression while demonstrating diligence in understanding how others’ viewpoints may differ from their own. This environment should be free from prejudice and discrimination based on characteristics such as age, ancestry/national origin, color, disability, gender identity/expression, genetic information, immigration status, marital status, parental status, political affiliation, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, and veteran or military status.
Diversity refers to the range of human interests, life experiences, perspectives, and values, which is impacted by factors such as age, ancestry/national origin, color, disability, education, gender identity/expression, genetic information, immigration status, marital status, parental status, political affiliation, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, veteran or military status, and wealth. Salisbury University believes that diversity enriches our workplace and learning environment.
Equity is the creation and proactive reinforcement of policies, practices, and attitudes that promote fair treatment, opportunities, resources, and outcomes for all. Whereas equality provides for all people equally, equity accounts for individual circumstances and provides each person with what is needed for success. To achieve equity, structural inequalities must be acknowledged and addressed. Salisbury University endeavors to identify and eliminate barriers that have prevented the full participation of marginalized and minoritized groups. It seeks equity in the provision of opportunities for all groups, including those that have been historically underserved and underrepresented.
Inclusion is the act of creating opportunities that allow any individual or group to be welcomed, respected, supported, and valued so they can fully participate in and contribute to a community’s success. Salisbury University strives to provide an environment in which all members of the campus community feel a sense of belonging and have a voice in university matters.
Salisbury University unites highly qualified and diverse faculty, staff, and students to create a learning community firmly grounded in a liberal arts education. The University is increasingly internationally oriented and prepares its students for careers in a global economy, for graduate education, and for meeting the State’s workforce needs.
Believing that a diverse community of individuals and ideas greatly enriches the campus learning environment and is critical to preparing students for life in a global society, SU makes a conscious effort to promote diversity and inclusion on campus and supports activities that bring awareness and understanding of different cultures and groups. The University’s offices of Diversity and Inclusion, Institutional Equity, Veteran Services, Multicultural Student Services, and others develop programs and opportunities to support faculty, staff, and students and ensure a welcoming, equitable, and open campus environment. Its highly committed and diverse faculty and staff work together to generate a robust learning environment that emphasizes the sense of community and excellence that are at the core of the University’s initiatives.
At Salisbury University, we emphasize active learning and the preparation of students for civic engagement with the ability to pursue personal and professional education throughout their lives. The University’s Clarke Honors College offers academically enriched curricula enhanced by community-based learning and many cultural events and activities for talented and high-achieving students. As a vital resource and economic engine, the University promotes and supports applied research, targeted outreach programs, PK-16 partnerships, wide-ranging cultural events open to the community, nationally competitive Division III athletics, and the active engagement of faculty, staff, and students in all aspects of community life.
As a predominantly undergraduate institution, Salisbury University offers degree programs in the liberal arts, science and technology, nursing and health sciences, teacher education, social work, business, and information systems. Graduate programs are chiefly applied with degrees offered in business administration, human health and performance, athletic training, nursing and nursing practice, social work, education and literacy, teaching, mathematics education, applied biology, geographic information systems management, English, conflict analysis and dispute resolution, and history with an emphasis on Chesapeake studies. In response to regional and statewide workforce needs, the University explores the potential for new programs or partnerships with other institutions and examines community demands for new or expanded undergraduate and graduate programs. Recent additions of applied doctorates in nursing and education address specific pressing needs of our region. Academic programs are offered primarily on our 218-acre campus, which is highly praised for its attractive open spaces, easy pedestrian circulation, and numerous outdoor sculptures. The campus is a designated arboretum for the scientific study and public display of various species of woody and herbaceous plants. Programs such as social work, elementary education and exercise science are offered through a variety of media at Regional Program campuses throughout Maryland and in Europe. The development of online programs allows SU to offer programs beyond our campus and internationally.
Opportunities to study abroad are encouraged to facilitate greater student understanding of the differences and similarities among peoples of the world. An English Language Institute provides a pathway for increased numbers of international students to enter academic programs at SU. Additionally, the ability to support J-1 visas for visiting international scholars creates new opportunities for Maryland students to learn from a more diverse faculty. Diversity among campus members, ideas, and perspectives is highly valued as the underpinning of an informed education and the basis of understanding in an increasingly interdependent world.
Founded in 1925 as a college for the preparation of teachers, Salisbury University today attracts the majority of its students to the Lower Eastern Shore from the Maryland counties west of the Chesapeake Bay and Baltimore City as well as from other states and nations. Salisbury University serves and supports the Eastern Shore, its communities, and its heritage, as demonstrated by its commitment to the University’s Ward Museum of Wildfowl Art, the most comprehensive collection of wildfowl carving in the world, and the Nabb Research Center for Delmarva History and Culture dedicated to collecting, preserving, and providing access both to the oldest, continuous written records in British-speaking America and to the documents and artifacts illustrating the greater Delmarva region’s rich historical and cultural heritage. The University’s many outreach groups support the people and businesses of our home community while providing service-learning opportunities for our students, faculty, and staff.
Salisbury University is the cultural center for the region, providing numerous programmatic offerings of cultural affairs, theatre, music, dance, and art exhibitions that are enjoyed annually by thousands of campus and community members. At the same time, the University recognizes that its appeal and service, both now and in the future, are to a broad and diverse student population. In recent years, the University has achieved both State and national distinction among its peers and has been acknowledged as one of the best public universities in its class. This reputation extends into all areas of campus life, including our Division III athletics program that affirms academics as the highest priority in the life of student-athletes. The athletic 1-5 programs SU annually field nationally competitive teams and athletes who consistently rank among the best in the country, both athletically and academically.
The University’s mission includes support and outreach to the community and region. In 2020, SU was recognized by the Carnegie Community Engaged Campus Designation for its demonstrated commitment to the community and partnerships to strengthen and invigorate town/gown synergies. SU also collaborates with the University of Maryland Eastern Shore (UMES), a Land Grant and Historically Black University located in neighboring Somerset County. This relationship broadens diversity, permits the sharing of resources, and allows for joint educational programming.
The University is a stakeholder in the Eastern Shore Higher Education Center (ESHEC) at Wye Mills, with the authority to offer baccalaureate and master’s degrees at that location. In this venue, SU partners with Chesapeake College, Cecil College and the University of Maryland Eastern Shore. The focus of this broad partnership is to ensure that regional educational needs are met by regional institutions through articulated and collaborative programs, distance education, and other opportunities. The University is also a partner institution at the Universities at Shady Grove (USG) in Rockville, MD, where it delivers a B.S. degree in exercise science, and B.F.A with an emphasis in graphic design, and an M.S. in human health and performance. Additionally, SU offers its social work program at the University System of Maryland’s Hagerstown site, at Cecil College, at the Higher Education Center in Southern Maryland, and, in a unique partnership with the University of Maryland Global Campus, at Ramstein Air Force Base in Germany.
The University has worked diligently to enhance the high quality of academic programming even in times of State fiscal constraint and without undue burden on our students and their families. Ever watchful to meet the high standards expected by our students, faculty, and other stakeholders, the institution has planned prudently for future enrollment growth and facilities improvement and expansion. Increasingly, we look to our Alumni Association and Salisbury University Foundation to assist the University in raising the necessary resources to ensure adequate scholarships for our students, development of support for our faculty, and capital funds to support new building and renovation.
With its strong commitment to active learning, the University will continue to recruit, support and develop outstanding faculty and staff who encourage and facilitate student participation in internships, international experiences, research, service learning, and leadership development opportunities.
Research, scholarship, and creative activity remain fundamental to university life and are integral to both teaching and learning. Salisbury faculty members, who are teacher/scholars engaged in both pure and applied research, are encouraged and supported to include students in research, scholarship, and creative endeavors. The University provides support for faculty to communicate their accomplishments in these areas through a web-based activity reporting solution (Watermark Faculty Success - formerly Digital Measures). This platform supports the redesign of faculty profiles to a standard format which will allow students and external audiences to more easily identify faculty with research and service interests similar to their own. Hundreds of students present findings at the University’s annual research conference which was established in 2002. Additionally, scores of Salisbury students present their work at professional meetings within their disciplines, the National Conference on Undergraduate Research (NCUR), case competitions, and regional Honors conferences.
Salisbury’s Nationally Competitive Fellowships Office supports students seeking scholarships and fellowships such as Fulbright, Marshall, Rhodes, Gates, Mitchell, Goldwater, Udall, and Boren. Since its establishment in 2011, Salisbury students have won prestigious Gates Cambridge, Gilman, German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), Environmental Protection Agency fellowships and the campus was recognized by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs as a top producer of Fulbright students. Additionally, the University created the Office of Undergraduate Research and Creative Activity (OURCA) to cultivate a vibrant environment of undergraduate scholarship through supporting faculty-student mentorships and an Undergraduate Research Fellows Program.
In fall 2016, the Academic Advising Center was established and professional academic advisors were hired to primarily assist with the advising of incoming freshmen. The academic advisors utilize Navigate as an analytical and communications system to assist in course selection, selection of a major, early indicators of academic success and development, and communication campaigns. Each first-year student is assigned an academic advisor to assist them with understanding degree requirements, planning coursework, and developing an understanding of opportunities available across the university. The services provided through the AAC and Navigate also complement services offered by Career Services, the Center for Student Achievement (CSA), the Writing Center, TRiO, and Residence Life. Students are also supported by programs in the University’s Counseling Center, Student Health Services, Center for Student Leadership and Involvement, Disability Resource Center, and Multicultural Student Services.
Salisbury University thrives as a premier comprehensive public institution that is recognized as a model by regional and national peers. All academic programs and curricula are the purview of the faculty, who design, deliver and regularly assess all aspects of the academic enterprise. Learning is at the heart of university life, and teaching effectiveness is a principal criterion in faculty recruitment, promotion, tenure, and merit decisions. Our annual survey of extra-instructional activity confirms the high productivity of our current faculty in terms of numerous publications, grant awards, and creative endeavors; hundreds of undergraduate research and community projects; and thousands of public service days.
Academic and Other Programming
As a comprehensive institution, Salisbury University assumes a critical role in responding to the educational, economic, cultural, and social needs of the region. There are four endowed schools at Salisbury University plus the Honors College, which was established in 2016. In July 2018, the new College of Health and Human Services was launched. Below are short descriptions of the University’s academic, educational, and outreach units.
The University’s academic programs are delivered or supported by the following units within Academic Affairs:
Each of the schools and colleges at Salisbury University as well as other offices significantly contribute to the welfare of the campus and the community through outreach programs, centers, and institutes including the following entities:
- Delmarva Public Media operates three public radio stations (WSCL 89.5, WSDL 90.7 and WESM 91.3), which together offer classical, contemporary, blues and jazz music; NPR and local news programming; and public affairs programming.
- A student-run radio station (WXSU 96.3) and public access television station (PAC-14) also connect the University to the regional community.
- The Center for Healthy Communities endeavors to positively impact our region’s community health status through workforce development, grant activities, continuing education, and service-learning opportunities.
- The Ward Museum of Wildfowl Art advances the understanding of wildfowl art and the interrelationships of art, nature and culture. The educational programs, exhibits and events the Ward Museum builds greater understanding of the human relationship to the natural world. The Ward Museum is a premier educational facility for the study of material culture, living traditions, and environmental concerns for the school children, scholars, and artists who are a part of the community the museum serves and has achieved accreditation from the American Association of Museums (AAM), the highest national recognition for a museum. Accreditation signifies the Ward 1-11 Museum has met and exceeded the highest standards of the museum field and is among the best institutions in the country.
- The Institute for Public Affairs and Civic Engagement (PACE) provides non-partisan programming to support the development of an informed, responsible citizenry and by promoting good government on campus and at the local, state and federal levels. The University recently joined the Nonprofit Leadership Alliance through which PACE offers the Certified Nonprofit Professional credential.
- The Bosserman Center for Conflict Resolution is an internationally recognized outreach program where students, faculty and professional staff collaborate on service programs and research projects across the region, nation, and globe. In spring 2018, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) hosted two Salisbury students as inaugural Bosserman Fellows at their headquarters in Paris.
- The Lower Shore Child Care Resource Center promotes the professional development and certification of childcare providers.
- The Eastern Shore Regional GIS Cooperative (ESRGC) provides geographic information systems (GIS) support and training and data visualization to a wide array of agencies at the local, state, and federal level.
- The Henson Medical Simulation Center, established in 2011 with a $1M naming gift, not only serves students within Salisbury University’s new College of Health & Human Services, but also provides training to practicing healthcare professionals and students at UMES as well as outreach to a number of community groups.
- Salisbury University Art Galleries and Collection enrich the cultural environment of the University, the city, and Maryland’s Eastern Shore by encouraging the appreciation and understanding of art and its role in society. The University Art Galleries is comprised of two on-campus galleries (The Electronic Gallery dedicated to new media art and the University Gallery dedicated to bringing important national and international artist’s work to campus) and two off-campus galleries (a Downtown Gallery dedicated to connecting Salisbury University’s mission to the community and the 303 Gallery dedicated to student artworks).
- The Business, Economic, and Community Outreach Network (BEACON) has a dual mission of providing Perdue School of Business students with a wide variety of experiential learning opportunities and providing our region’s public- and private-sector decision-makers with the business and economic development data, information, skills and know-how they need through targeted outreach programs, applied research, trend and scenario analyses, demand forecasting, strategic planning, feasibility studies, and modeling for resource allocation, process improvement, and economic impact studies.
- The Rommel Center for Entrepreneurship in downtown Salisbury provides an accelerator, incubator and co-working space, paired with business support services in Salisbury’s Gallery Building on Main Street.
- The Eastern Region of the Maryland Small Business Development Center (SBDC) is dedicated to helping establish and expand small businesses all over Maryland’s Eastern Shore. Through professional training for start-up/growth ventures and its no-cost confidential business consulting service, the SBDC helps develop and refine business plans, solve problems, find sources of capital and develop strategies to support growth and profitability. The SBDC at Salisbury University has helped launch among the highest number of start-up businesses in the State of Maryland in recent years.
Institutional Objectives, Outcomes and Strategic Plan
Salisbury University is increasingly outcomes-oriented and reports these measures to internal leadership, the State of Maryland’s governing branches and agencies, regional and specialized accrediting agencies, and other primary stakeholders. The institution is committed to a Strategic Plan and outcomes that support the State of Maryland’s objectives for higher education as stated in the 2017-2021 State Plan for Postsecondary Education: Student Success with Less Debt as well as the Performance Accountability/Managing for Results (MFR) process and the University System of Maryland 2020 Strategic Plan, Powering Maryland Forward.
Following more than a year of collaboration through information gathering, trend analysis and focus group discussions with faculty, staff, students and community constituents, SU developed five goals to lead our efforts as we approach our 2025 centennial anniversary: 1) Enrich Academic Success and Student Development; 2) Inspire a Campus Culture of Inclusive Excellence, Support and Collaboration; 3) Support Access, Affordability and Academic Excellence; 4) Deepen Engagement with Our Community; and 5) Enhance Environmental, Social and Economic Sustainability. The full strategic plan is available online.
The President of the University, as its chief executive officer, is responsible for the administration and supervision of the institution. As a part of this overall administrative and supervisory responsibility, the president makes all administrative appointments at the University. Administrative positions at the University are twelve-month appointments unless otherwise specified.
The design for administration leadership developed by the president of Salisbury University is depicted in the University’s organizational chart.
The organizational chart shows the distribution of university leadership to a provost and senior vice president for academic affairs and vice presidents of administration and finance, student affairs, and university advancement and each with responsibility for the administration and supervision of a major aspect of the University’s operation. The provost and vice presidents are assisted by administrators of specific campus units. The organizational design shows formal authority flowing in a direct line from the president to the provost and the vice presidents, and from the provost and the vice presidents to administrators in the components for which the provost or the vice presidents have responsibility. In addition to a hierarchical structure of authority, Academic Affairs’ organizational chart shows that direct, cross cooperation between the units which comprise Academic Affairs and other divisions is necessary expected because of the shared responsibility of these units for students’ experiences at the University.
The Salisbury University Public Relations Office is responsible for informing external audiences, through the media in most instances, of the ongoing events, achievements, policies and operations of the University. This includes announcements of University news and upcoming events associated with the University, as well as responses to media inquiries and sending all the media to Media Relations for their review.
It is the office’s job to devise and carry out programs that will gain wide and favorable interpretation of these policies and operations.
The tools used to accomplish this task include press releases, feature stories, advertisements, press conferences, frequent contact with representatives of print and digital media, radio and television stations. Profnet, an electronic media clearinghouse, is an expertly effective communication vehicle to reach audiences beyond the Eastern Shore.
The Public Relations Office is ready to assist faculty/staff members in publicity efforts. The office can also assist in arranging interviews and other contacts with the media. In general faculty/staff are encouraged to use the Public Relations Office’s resources as much as possible, but going through this office is not a necessary condition for communicating with the media, so long as a faculty/staff member is speaking as a citizen and not as a spokesperson for the University. The mere identification that one is an employee of the university does not make one a spokesperson for the university. Each faculty/staff member is reminded that they have special obligations in communicating with the media as a citizen: to be accurate, to show respect for the opinions of others and to make every effort to indicate that they are not an institutional spokesperson.
When a faculty/staff member is speaking as a spokesperson for the University, all contact with the media should be routed through the Public Relations Office.
All campus publications intended for an audience outside the campus community should be routed through the Publications Office. The Publications Office has final approval for all of these “external” publications. This policy ensures all campus publications have a common “look” and they adhere to any university, state or referral requirements for certain publications. All advertising (display or classified) must go through the Publications Office.
Administration of the Academic Program
The academic program at Salisbury University is administered by the provost and senior vice president of academic affairs who has responsibility for development of the overall curriculum and management of the fiscal resources and faculty that support and implement the program. The provost delegates responsibility for administering the academic program to the deans of the schools of the University who are in turn assisted in operationalizing the academic program by the department chairs, program directors, and school directors. The structure of the provost’s responsibility for the academic program is depicted in the University’s organizational chart.
The Division of Academic Affairs is one of four divisions within the University (the others are Administration and Finance, Student Affairs, and Advancement and External Affairs), which together with the President’s Office provide administrative oversight at the University. Academic Affairs includes all academic programs and outreach entities within the Clarke Honors College, College of Health and Human Services, Fulton School of Liberal Arts, Henson School of Science and Technology, Perdue School of Business, and Seidel School of Education as well as the Academic Advising Center; Center for Instructional Design and Delivery; Center for International Education; Cultural Affairs; Office of Graduate Studies and Research; Office of Nationally Competitive Fellowships; Registrar’s Office; SU Libraries; University Analysis, Reporting and Assessment; and University Writing Center.
Deans’ responsibilities include personnel and resource management, curriculum development, and general administration. Deans implement these responsibilities cooperatively with department chairs, program directors, and school directors and determine in consultation with them the specific activities that they will carry out as part of the day-to-day operation of the academic program. Detailed descriptions of the roles and responsibilities of department chairs/program directors may be found in Chapter 2: Faculty Appointment, Rank, Tenure and Promotion .
The Faculty Senate is the recognized voice of the faculty at Salisbury University. The Faculty Senate represents all full-time faculty through the process of shared governance. The Senate seeks ways to improve communication and collaborative decision-making between all levels of the University. In addition, the Senate acts as an advisory and consultative body to the Provost on all matters that may affect the attainment of the University’s educational objectives and goals. The Salisbury University Faculty Senate website has the most current Bylaws.
University Governance Consortium
The Governance Consortium facilitates and coordinates communication among the faculty, staff, and students of Salisbury University for the purpose of ensuring timely information sharing and shared decision-making among the representative bodies when issues affect the broad campus community and collective interest. The constituent organizations of the Governance Consortium include the Faculty Senate, the Staff Senate, the Student Government Association, the Graduate Student Council, the Adjunct Faculty Caucus, University Committees and the Consortium Coordinating Committee. When deemed necessary, the President, the Provost or the Coordinating Committee can call a general meeting of all the constituents of the university community. This coming together of all members of the campus community will comprise the University Assembly.
Academic freedom is the liberty that faculty members must have if they are to practice their scholarly profession in accordance with the norms of that profession. It is based in the institutional structure of this and other universities and is fundamental to their common mission of promoting inquiry and advancing the sum of human knowledge and understanding. It is a condition of employment. Although some aspects of academic freedom are also protected by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution, academic freedom exists, independent of any external protection, as a basic prerequisite for universities to fulfill their mission to our society.
Generally, academic freedom is the freedom to teach, both in and outside the classroom, to conduct research and to engage in other scholarly or creative activities, to publish or otherwise disseminate the results, and to control promotion and tenure standards. Academic freedom also encompasses the freedom to address, or not address, any matter of institutional policy or action whether or not one is a member of any agency of institutional governance. Faculty have the freedom to address the larger community with regard to any social, political, economic, or other interest. Administrations should not place impediments - technical or otherwise - between faculty, all faculty should have the freedom to connect with their peers.
Academic freedom is most commonly exercised by individual faculty members, but remains a professional prerequisite of faculty members as a group. Academic freedom extends to all faculty whether full-time or part-time, tenured or non-tenured, adjunct or contingent. Faculty must be free from any censorship, threat, restraint, retaliation, or discipline by the University with regard to the pursuit of truth in the performance of their teaching, research, publishing or service obligation. Faculty also have the right to review and be reviewed by peers and thereby to control the standards and expectations for promotion and tenure.
The policy on shared governance in the University System of Maryland concurs, stating that “[f]aculty and staff who do not hold administrative appointments, and all students, may express their opinions freely on all shared governance matters without retaliation.”
Academic freedom includes the following specific freedoms:
- freedom of research and publication. Within the broad standards of accountability established by their profession and their individual disciplines, faculty members must enjoy the fullest possible freedom in their research and in circulating and publishing their results. This freedom follows immediately from the University’s basic commitment to advancing knowledge and understanding. Faculty must control their own scholarship and must be able to determine the content, format, wording, methodology, tone, et cetera, of their own work.
- freedom to determine standards Faculty are uniquely qualified to determine the directions and standards of their profession. Such expectations are determined by colleagues in the disciplines, including both faculty working in creative fields and faculty performing traditional research.
- freedom of teaching. This freedom is an outgrowth of the previous one. Faculty members must be able not only to disseminate to their students the results of research by themselves and others in their profession, but also to train students to think about these results for themselves, often in an atmosphere of controversy that, so long as it remains in a broad sense educationally relevant, actively assists students in mastering the subject and appreciating its significance.
- freedom of internal criticism. Universities promote the common good not through individual decision or bureaucratic calculation, but through broad-based engagement in the scholarly endeavor. Faculty members, because of their education and their institutional knowledge, play an indispensable role as independent participants in university decision-making. By virtue of this role, they are entitled to comment on or criticize the University’s policies or decisions, either individually or through institutions of faculty governance. •
- freedom of participation in public debate. Both within and beyond their areas of expertise, faculty members are generally entitled to participate as citizens in public forums and debates without fear of institutional discipline or restraint, so long as it is clear that they are not acting or speaking for the University. Faculty are not institutional representatives unless specifically authorized as such.
Numerous positive outcomes flow from these freedoms. The historical model for education in the U.S. has been one shared governance where the faculty are major contributors to the operation of the institution. When faculty play a major role in ensuring quality of education the competitive advantage necessary for freedom of thought and creativity is assured. Faculty spend much time and effort bringing their disciplinary perspectives and institutional experience to bear on curricular and other decisions within the academy, and must be allowed to speak freely on these issues. Conversely, faculty cannot be made to speak when they do not wish to. (One effect of this - implicitly and explicitly - is that faculty advocate for effective use of taxpayer funding within the institution and system.) They must be assured the ability to function in these roles without fear of retaliation for the expression of their views, whatever they might be.
This policy does not protect plagiarism, abuse, or any illegal activities or speech.
Academic freedom is essential to the fulfillment of the purposes of the University. The parties acknowledge and encourage the continuation of an atmosphere of confidence and freedom while recognizing that the concept of academic freedom is accompanied by a corresponding concept of responsibility to the University and its students. It is of critical importance that any restrictions to academic freedom required - such as those delineated in a particular professional ethics statement or any university standards pertaining to disruptive behavior - be drawn up and implemented with substantial faculty input, in such a way as to minimize infringement of academic freedom. In large part, this goal should be accomplished by ensuring that institutional discipline of faculty members is in proportion to the severity and persistence of misconduct, and by insisting that alleged offenses be handled with appropriate standards of due process, including, wherever possible, the judgment of competent peers. For the rest, however, it must be recognized that contemporary threats to academic freedom are constantly evolving. This University - its faculty, administration, and students alike -must exercise constant vigilance in resisting such threats, whether they arise within the university or from outside.
(Passed CUSF May 18, 2012). Submitted by the Faculty Senate April 17, 2015
In the matter of the academic calendar, Salisbury University operates under USM BOR III-5-0. The University’s calendars include Academic Calendar Highlights and the Final Exam Schedule.
Role of Faculty in the Development of Academic Policy
USM BOR policy specifies that faculty will have a primary role in the development of academic policies through representative bodies advisory to the chief executive officer or designees of the institution. The Bylaws of the Salisbury University Faculty Senate establishes an Academic Policies Committee which ensures a faculty role in the development of academic policy at the University. The role and function of the Academic Policies Committee is described in the Faculty Senate Bylaws.
- Salisbury University may award honorary degrees at commencement exercises on the basis of recommendation by an ad hoc honorary degree committee and approval of the Provost, President and the Board of Regents of the University System of Maryland.
- Deadline for nominations to the Chancellor is the end of the fall semester. The Education Policy Committee will review all nominations and make recommendations to the full Board, which will take action during the February meeting.
- Care should be taken to ensure strict confidentiality at all stages of the honorary degree process. There should be no communication with prospective degree recipients regarding a likely degree until after the Board of Regents has approved the award. Approvals shall remain confidential until the candidate is notified of their selection. Degrees may be conferred at any time within five years of approval, unless withdrawn by the Board of Regents for cause.
- Students, faculty, administration and alumni can propose candidates for consideration to the committee. Once nominations are received, the Provost establishes the Honorary Degree Committee using a ballot of all tenured, full professors at the University.
- There is no expectation that Salisbury University will award one or more honorary degrees at each commencement exercise.
- It is a practice that the University not award honorary degrees to sitting politicians.
- The Honorary Degree Committee may use any or all of the following criteria in selecting candidates it will recommend for honorary degrees:
a. The candidate should have, but not necessarily be limited to, some ties to the region predominately served by Salisbury University (e.g., Eastern Shore; Mid-Atlantic).
b. Candidates may be considered on the basis of intellectual or academic achievement consistent with the mission of the institution.
c. Candidates may be considered on the basis of philanthropic inclination.
Salisbury University Faculty Handbook ©