Tuesday, December 15, 2015
Why Don’t They Show Up?
Wise and worldly readers, are there better explanations? And are there consistently successful ways to make shared governance both more widely shared and a more positive influence on campus?
As for the faculty senate, how do you get anything done if there isn't a quorum? Hope no one makes a quorum call? I much prefer a large representative body over a committeee of the whole, although that depends on a good agenda coming out well in advance, like when folks follow Dean Dad's meeting rules!
BTW, I'm curious. How often do you attend in an official capacity?
In my experience in the latter senate (as a senator), most meetings involved administrators talking and telling us what the administration was doing whether we would or not. Many administrators seem to count meetings as their primary work. For faculty, they don't feel like our primary work. I can't begin to count how many hours I've wasted because an administrator wanted to inform (or have a deanling inform) the senate (or committee) about something the senate (or committee) wasn't going to ever vote on. (How many meetings on "clickers" have I sat through as a senator? More than I like to remember.)
Now that I'm not a senate representative, I don't go to the meetings unless I need to for some reason. If the senate actually had any governance power, then it would be worth putting in the time. But just to nod at the endless parade of talking administrators? No thanks.
I'd look at the scheduling of the meeting, and think about whether it's convenient to the faculty/staff or if it's convenient to the administrators. (Almost all big college/university committees at my current school are set up to be convenient for administrators.) And then think about whether the faculty/staff actually feel like the shared governance is really shared.
Always interesting to compare voting in the US to Canada (given similarities in the countries). Their recent election had record turnouts in hopes of dumping a Prime Minister who had overstayed their welcome.
I believe that believed efficacy is a factor in voting or political attendance. Do people feel that their attendance at a meeting is worth the effort/time to be there. Most Senate meetings are about mundane matters or approving items where the real work was done in the committees. When they perceive they have a real stake in the outcome, they make the effort to attend/vote.
This is an awesome article. I've been here for the first time and found that your site is well informative and well organized. Keep up the sharing.
Resume writer @ professional resume writing service