CONSTITUTION OF THE FACULTY ASSEMBLY UNIVERSITY OF MARYLAND EASTERN SHORE (UMES)

Re-submitted to the President with changes: Feb 18, 1998
Approved by the President: March 18, 1998
Revised: Fall 2003
Amended Spring 2020

Article I: Purpose

The UMES Faculty Assembly (FA) is established with the belief that those involved in conducting the University’s academic programs should participate in the formulation of policies governing the establishment of those programs. The Faculty Assembly shall function so that through it the collective intelligence of the Faculty can be directed towards promoting the academic well-being of the University.


Article II: Membership

Section A: Genera! Membership

Voting membership in the UMES Faculty Assembly shall consist of the full-time teaching, research and extension faculty (including Department Chairs). Part- time faculty members are encouraged to attend and participate in meetings but are recognized as non-voting members.

Section B: UMES Faculty Assembly Council Membership

Each academic department at UMES shall elect one Councilor for every ten (10) voting members of the UMES Faculty Assembly or any remaining portion of five (5) or greater except that every department is guaranteed at least one Councilor. One alternate councilor will also be elected from each department (who is encouraged to attend all the meetings but will vote only when a regular councilor is not present).

For the purposes of this subsection and Articles VII and IX, all voting members not belonging to an academic department will be treated as a single department. The Officers of the Faculty Assembly, as specified in Article IV, are also members of the UMES Faculty Assembly Council. Membership on the UMES Faculty Assembly Council is limited to voting members of the UMES Faculty Assembly.

 

Article III: Functions and Responsibilities

The UMES Faculty Assembly (FA), through UMES Faculty Assembly Councilors (the elected representatives of the UMES Faculty Assembly) and its representation in the UMES Senate, shall be the voice in recommending policies concerning all factors influencing the academic and intellectual environment of the University. The faculty shall elect representatives (and alternates) to UMES Faculty Assembly Council, the Council of the University of Maryland System Faculty (CUSF), the Faculty Advisory Council of the Maryland Higher Education Commission (MHEC) and other agencies and bodies, as appropriate. Election procedures shall be as prescribed in Article VII. For matters of great importance (as determined by the FA Council), full faculty voting will be solicited (e.g. Presidential search, FA Constitution, Post-Tenure Review Policies etc.).


Section A:

The UMES Faculty Assembly shall:

  1. act as the collective voice of the faculty through the UMES Faculty Assembly Council,
  1. participate actively in the process of formulating policies and procedures relating to issues of academic importance,
  2. through its elected representatives (the UMES Faculty Assembly Council) on behalf of the UMES Faculty Assembly will, advise the President of the University of Maryland Eastern Shore, the Chancellor of the University of Maryland System, the Maryland Higher Education Commission and the Board o(Regents, and other bodies on significant issues pertinent to the faculty, and
  3. serve as the referendum body of the faculty.


Section B:

The membership of the UMES Faculty Assembly, the UMES President (or designate). Vice Presidents , and official representatives of the UMES Senate may present matters to the Faculty Assembly in accordance with procedures specified in Article V.

Section C:

The UMES Faculty Assembly Council shall develop resolutions on behalf of the UMES Faculty Assembly except in instances where the modification of the constitution are concerned. Resolutions shall be presented to the President of the University of Maryland Eastern Shore or to official agencies (through elected representatives) as appropriate.

Section D:

if any councilor or any member of a committee is either a noncontributing member or misses more than two unexcused meetings, the chair of the respective group may request new members to be elected.


Article IV: Organization and Duties

Section A.

The officers of the UMES Faculty Assembly shall consist of a Chair, Chair-Elect, the Immediate Past Chair, Secretary, Treasurer, Parliamentarian, and any other officers deemed necessary by the Faculty Assembly. The officers of the UMES Faculty Assembly shall also serve as the officers of the UMES Faculty Assembly Council.

  1. The Chair shall preside over all meetings, and shall serve as an ex-officio member of all standing committees. After one term (one year) the Chair shall succeed to the office of Immediate Past Chair.
  2. The Chair-elect shall act as Chair in the absence of the elected Chair and shall also be the coordinator of committee reports. After one term, the Chair-elect shall succeed to the office of the Chair.
  3. The Immediate Past Chair will serve as an advisory capacity and will act as the Chair in the absence of the Chair and the Chair-Elect.
  4. The Secretary shall keep and distribute minutes of all the proceedings of the meetings of the UMES Faculty Assembly, UMES Faculty Assembly Council, and the Executive Board.
  5. The Treasurer shall be responsible for all financial matters of the UMES Faculty Assembly Council; shall collect and distribute money as authorized by the LIMES Faculty Assembly Council; and keep accurate accounts of the UMES Faculty Assembly Council’s financial affairs by proper accounting methods. Financial records shall be subject to audit as authorized by the UMES Faculty Assembly Council.
  6. The Parliamentarian shall advise the Chairperson regarding parliamentary and constitutional procedures.


Section B. The Executive Board

  1. The FA Executive Board shall consist of the officers of the Faculty Assembly. This board shall meet once every month before the regularly scheduled meeting of the FA Council to set the agenda and to discuss other matters of importance.
  2. The Executive Board shall be responsible for the implementation of decisions made by the UMES Faculty Assembly Council; it shall coordinate the functions of the standing and ad hoc committees, and shall oversee the preparation of Faculty Assembly reports submitted to interested agencies, bodies and individuals. The Executive Board (through the secretary) shall also compile and distribute agendas for all meetings.


Section C. Committees

  1. Standing Committees
    1. There shall be two (2) standing committees:
      1. Committee on Faculty Affairs.

The committee shall review and recommend policies regarding all matters which affect the Faculty in the areas of appointments, promotions, salaries, leaves of absence, retirement programs, insurance, fringe benefits, academic freedom and responsibilities, grievance procedures, and other matters pertaining to the welfare and activities of the faculty.

  1. Committee on Academic Standards, Curriculum, Programs, and Services.

The Committee shall review matters and recommend policies pertaining to academic standards, admissions, orientation, curriculum, library affairs, academic facilities, summer school, calendar and catalog schedules, and cultural programs.

  1. The Committee shall review all curriculum and program changes and vote on them. A majority vote in favor of the changes will result in recommendations to the full Faculty Assembly. A majority vote of a quorum of the assembled faculty will result in forwarding the recommendations to the Vice President of Academic Affairs for final approval and action.
  2. Honorary degree and recognition award nominations will originate in the office of the Vice President of Academic Affairs in consultation with the Faculty Assembly.

 

  1. Committee Membership

 

  1. Members of the Faculty Assembly shall indicate the committees on which they wish to serve. From these lists each committee chairperson shall select the committee membership subject to approval by a simple majority of the membership of the UMES Faculty Assembly Council. In the absence of volunteers, committee members will be appointed by the committee chair with the concurrence of the UMES Faculty Assembly Council.
  2. No committee shall have more than one member from any one academic department.
  3. Committees shall consist of a committee chair and at least three (3) members, all of whom shall be members of the UMES Faculty Assembly.
  4. The Chairperson of the UMES Faculty Assembly shall be a non-voting ex- officio member of standing committees.
  5. An interim chair of each committee shall be appointed by the Chair of the FA. Interim Chair is responsible for calling the first meeting of the committee and reporting the results of the election for the committee chair. Chairperson is to be elected by members of the committee at this first meeting of the committee.

 

  1. Subcommittees

Standing committees may establish temporary subcommittees as required by simply notifying the Executive Board of their intent to do so in writing.

  1. Ad Hoc Committees
    1. Ad Hoc Committees may be established by the UMES Faculty Assembly Council as required.
    2. All matters concerning functions, election of committee chairs, and membership of an ad hoc committee shall be determined by the UMES Faculty Assembly Council at the time of its establishment.


Article V: Meetings

Section A. Types of Meetings

  1. Regular Meetings of the UMES Faculty Assembly Council

The UMES Faculty Assembly Council shall hold regular monthly meetings during the fall and spring semesters at a time and place to be determined by the Executive Board.

  1. Regular Meetings of the UMES Faculty Assembly

The UMES Faculty Assembly shall hold a regular meeting at the beginning of the Fall and Spring semesters at a time and place to be determined by the Executive Board.

  1. Special Meetings

The Chairperson may call special meetings of either the UMES Faculty Assembly or the UMES Faculty Assembly Council at the request of the UMES President or his/her designated representative, or by a majority vote of the UMES Executive Board, or by a petition from one third of the UMES Faculty Assembly Council membership, or by a petition from UMES Faculty Assembly members representing 75% of the departments at UMES. Members shall be given as much prior notice as is possible, but in no case less than twenty-four (24) hours.

Section B. Agenda

  1. The agenda for each regular meeting of the UMES Faculty Assembly and the UMES Faculty Assembly Council shall be distributed to all voting members of the respective body (via e-mail or to councilors for distribution to faculty without access to e-mail) at least one week prior to the meeting. This requirement may be suspended by a motion of the respective body.

  2. Agenda items shall be submitted to the Chair for consideration by the Executive Board at least two (2) weeks prior to the regularly scheduled meeting wherein such items are to be discussed.
  1. The agenda for special meetings shall be included with the notification of such meeting.


Section C. Minutes

Minutes of all meetings of the UMES Faculty Assembly and the UMES Faculty Assembly Council shall be kept and distributed to all faculty prior to the next regular meeting.

Section D. Quorum

Representation from fifty (SO) percent of the UMES academic Department shall constitute a quorum at a regular or special meeting of the UMES Faculty Assembly. Forty (40) percent of the membership shall constitute a quorum of a regular or special meeting of the UMES Faculty Assembly Council.

Section E. Proxy Provision

Members of the Faculty Assembly Council who are unable to attend a regularly scheduled meeting will ensure the attendance of a proxy member (alternate councilor). Proxy representation for an individual councilor will be limited to two meetings per semester. The FA secretary will inform the faculty of any department whose councilors (or alternate) miss more than two meetings in a semester. The department faculty may choose to replace those councilors.

Section F. Parliamentary Authority

Meetings of the UMES Faculty Assembly Council and the UMES Faculty Assembly shall be conducted in accordance with Robert’s Rules of Order, except as otherwise provided in this constitution.


Article VI: Amendments

Section A.

An Amendment to this Constitution shall be presented at a regular meeting of the UMES Faculty Assembly. A copy of the proposed amendment shall be provided to each member of the LIMES Faculty Assembly two weeks prior to the meeting. Proposals shall be made by:

  1. A Petition signed by fifteen percent (15%) of the members of the UMES Faculty Assembly; or
  2. The Executive Board of the UMES Faculty Assembly; or
  3. The UMES Faculty Assembly Council; or
  4. An Ad Hoc Constitution committee established pursuant to Article IV, Section C, Paragraph 2.


Section. B. Amendments to this Constitution shall be voted on by mail

ballot. (Article VII, Sec. C). A copy of the proposed amendment and a ballot shall be mailed to each member of the Faculty Assembly by the Secretary, not later than (5) school days after the meeting at which the amendment was proposed. Ten (10) school days after the initial mailing, the ballots shall be counted and the results announced.

Section C. Ratification

An amendment to this Constitution shall become effective upon approval by (1) a two- thirds majority of the UMES Faculty Assembly casting a ballot and (2) the President of the University of Maryland Eastern Shore.

 

Article VII: Elections

Section A. Officer Nominations and Elections

Officers shall serve one year terms and may be re-elected. Official notice of the opening of nominations for the Officers of the UMES Faculty Assembly (except Chair and Immediate Past Chair), UMES Faculty Assembly Council, CUSF, MHEC and other representatives (as appropriate) shall be given during the regular Spring meeting of the UMES Faculty Assembly. Nominations shall be taken from the floor at this meeting, or by mail or e-mail after this meeting up to the March FA Council meeting, and from the floor at the regular March meeting of the UMES Faculty Assembly Council. Election should be by mail ballot; however, e-mail can be used as an alternate method at the discretion of the faculty member. It should be noted that confidentiality cannot be guaranteed when voting via e-mail.

Following the regular March meeting of voting members of the UMES Faculty Assembly. A nominee who receives a simple plurality of the votes cast shall be deemed erected. In the event of a tie vote^ there shall be a runoff election at the regular April (or May) meeting of the UMES Faculty Assembly Council.

Section B. Inauguration

All newly elected persons shall be inaugurated at the regular May meeting.

Section C. Mail Ballots

When a vote is to be taken by mail; the Secretary shall distribute a marked ballot (which if Xeroxed can be identified) and one envelope to each member of the UMES Faculty Assembly. Envelope shall bear the word BALLOT and the address of the secretary, and will be used by the member to enclose and seal the ballot. Ballots shall have names of all nominees for all open positions and a “Write-In” line for each position to allow write-in names. In order for a ballot to be valid, (I) it must be returned in a sealed envelope, (2) have the word “BALLOT” on it, (3) bear the name and signature of the voter, and (4) be received by the Secretary of the Faculty Assembly within ten (10) school days after the mailing date of the ballot. The ballots will be counted by three(3) the tellers, elected by the Faculty Assembly Council shall validate the eligibility of the voter by the name and the signature placed on the upper left hand side of the envelope, and then remove the ballot from the envelope. All ballots will be thrown into a box without unfolding them to ensure confidentiality and then tallied. Envelopes shall be retained until the outcome of the balloting has been decided. The result will be announced by the Chair.

Section D. Special Elections

Special elections shall be carried out in the same manner as a regular election (Article VII, Sec. C). Nominations shall be made at a regularly scheduled meeting.

Section E. Departmental Representatives to UMES Faculty Assembly Council

Councilors shall serve three-year terms with no more than two terms in succession. After a one-year absence, member is again eligible to serve. Councilors and one alternate shall be nominated and elected by secret ballot at a meeting of voting members in a department. The UMES Faculty Assembly Council shall divide itself into three equal groups to serve one, two and three-year terms after its initial election with no two members of a department being in the same group.

Alternate councilors will vote in the Faculty Assembly Council meetings only when the Faculty Assembly Councilor does not attend the meeting.

Section P. UMES Senate Representative

Faculty Representatives of the UMES Senate shall be elected by the UMES Faculty Assembly Council. Councilors in their third year will be given preference and then councilors in their second year and lastly the councilors in their first year. The alternate councilors elected from each department are encouraged to attend UMES Senate and Faculty Assembly Council meetings regularly. In case the elected Senator is unable to attend he/she should make sure to arrange for the alternate councilor to attend the Senate meetings.

Section G.

If, for whatever reasons, violations of the election procedure occur requiring a repeat of that election, the responsible is the Faculty Assembly Executive Board that conducted the election.


ARTICLE VIll: VACANCIES IN OFFICE

Section A.

If the Chair of the Faculty Assembly is unable to complete a term of office, the Chair- elect shall serve as Chair for the remainder of that term.

Section B.

A vacancy in the Chair-elect position shall be filled by a special election held in the manner prescribed for a special election in Article VII, Section D. of this Constitution.

Section C.

If the Chair and the Chair-elect of the FA are simultaneously unable to serve during the given academic term, the Immediate Past Chair shall serve as Chair pro temp until a special election is held at the following regular meeting of the UMES Faculty Assembly Council. If none of these three persons are able to serve in any given academic term, the order of succession to the office of Chair pro temp shall be the Chair of the Faculty Affairs Committee, FA Secretary and then the Treasurer.

Section D.

If a vacancy shall occur in the office of Secretary, Treasurer or Parliamentarian the vacancy shall be filled by an appointment by the FA Chair with the approval of the Executive Board.


Article IX: Recall

Each member of the Executive Board or the UMES FA Council shall be subject to recall. Section A.

If the subject to recall is an officer, the Executive Board shall direct that a recall election be held within fourteen (14) days after receiving a petition signed by thirty (30) percent of the voting members of the UMES Faculty Assembly. If the subject is recall is a Councilor, the Executive Board shall direct that a recall election be held within fourteen (14) days after receiving a petition signed by fifty (50) percent of the voting members of the department of the Councilor.

Section B.

Recall results from an affirmative majority of the ballots cast by the Assembly membership in the manner described in Article Vll, Section C of this Constitution.

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