Suffolk University is a diverse community of teacher-scholars working in numerous areas of study, professions and endeavors. These faculty members work collaboratively with the administrations of their school and the University to create an institution that offers the greatest opportunities and value to students. The faculty has primary responsibility for the process of recruiting and vetting new hires. Additionally, because each hire represents a potential long-term relationship of mutual responsibilities between the hire and the University, the deans of each school and the administration of the University also have an interest and role to play in the consideration of new members of the faculty. The processes adopted by this University Faculty Handbook, including the school-specific sections of this handbook, recognize the diverse needs that drive faculty recruitment in different schools, departments and programs while setting a minimum standard of process that must be afforded candidates in each search.
Suffolk University is committed to providing an environment that advances equal opportunity and is free from discrimination and harassment on the basis of race, color, national or ethnic origin, religion, sex, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information, military or veteran status or any other characteristic protected under applicable federal or state law. This commitment applies to the University’s administration of, operation of and access to its academic and non-academic programs, policies and services as well as to its employment policies and practices.
The University prohibits retaliation against individuals who report discrimination or harassment, assist another in reporting a complaint or otherwise participate in an investigation. Accordingly, acts of discrimination or harassment or retaliation will result in disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment or dismissal or expulsion from the University.
The University complies with the prohibitions against discrimination on the basis of sex contained in Title IX of the Educational Amendments of 1972 as well as the requirements under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act.
The University will provide reasonable accommodation to qualified individuals with disabilities to ensure equal access and equal opportunities with regard to employment, educational opportunities, and the University's programs and services.
New positions may be requested from the provost by the respective deans of the three schools. The dean should include in such a request the following information:
The provost then will either give approval for the creation of all, some or none of the new positions. For each new position approved, the provost will authorize a search for the following academic year.
The dean of each school will determine if there is a vacancy that needs to be filled. After meeting with the department chair or with a designated faculty committee, the dean will develop a list of open faculty position recommendations ranked by need and preference. Subsequently, the dean will forward the school’s list, if any, to the provost along with a justification for each replacement position as described in Paragraph C above.
The provost may authorize a search or searches for the following academic year. If an approved position is not searched in the year following approval, the dean must request the position anew during the following spring approval process.
In situations of unexpected need, a dean may request the provost approve the commencement of an immediate search. However, such a request will only be granted if the need is specific, immediate and impacts the accreditation or primary functions of the school, department or program.
Although each search may have unique qualities because of applicable accreditation, membership, and professional standards, as well as unique departmental or school needs, every search must use a broad range of appropriate sources to identify candidates to ensure the most qualified and diverse pool.
The provost will confirm the approval of any authorized search in writing for both new and replacement positions to the appropriate dean as soon as practicable. In appropriate circumstances, the dean will forward a copy of that approval to the department chair where the faculty appointment will be located and/or the Search Committee responsible for the search.
The dean, in consultation with the department chair and/or Search Committee, will develop a position description. This position description will list the position responsibilities and the criteria that will be used to evaluate each applicant. The dean, in consultation with the department chair and/or Search Committee, will also develop a list of the publications and the sites where the position description will be posted. The position description for a full-time faculty position must be explicit, objective, and job-related. Each position must, at a minimum, include statements about the following:
a. Discipline/sub-field(s), rank, start date, and tenure status;
b. Required and/or preferred educational background;
c. Required and/or preferred teaching experience;
d. Required and/or preferred scholarly experience;
e. Deadline for applications and/or the starting date for application review;
f. Required recommendations and teaching evaluations, if available; and
g. The University Equal Opportunity Policy.
The position description for all approved positions, together with a list of the anticipated electronic and print placements for the position announcement, must be sent to the chief human resources officer.
Before developing a list of potential candidates the dean, department chair, and/or Search Committee will consult with the chief diversity officer of the University regarding outreach and special considerations related to building a diverse applicant pool. The Search Committee will develop a list of potential candidates after reviewing all of the materials submitted by applicants, employing those criteria listed in the published position description. The list that the Search Committee develops will include the name, the current address, and the current place of employment for the potential candidates.
Before any candidate is invited to interview, the Search Committee will establish in writing the procedures for conducting the on or off-campus campus interviews (e.g., presentation of research, creative work, or professional activities to the faculty; a classroom presentation; meeting with students; meeting with administrators or staff). The procedures selected by the Search Committee must be applied consistently to every candidate in that search, including internal candidates. Final candidates must interview with a dean or associate dean before any offer may be conveyed. The interview process must be conducted in accordance with the University Equal Opportunity Policy.
When the candidate interviews are concluded, the Search Committee will determine whether each candidate is acceptable or unacceptable. The Search Committee will then rank their preferences among the acceptable candidates. The results of both the decision regarding whether the candidates are acceptable or unacceptable and the Search Committee’s rank as to preference will be forwarded to the department chair, if he or she is not part of the Search Committee. The department chair will meet with the chair of the Faculty Search Committee, and others if appropriate, to develop a final ranked list of acceptable candidates which will be forwarded to the faculty eligible to vote on the candidate’s appointment in the department or school as described in the school-specific sections of this handbook.
The dean or individual delegated to negotiate the offer will meet with the chair of the Search Committee and/or the relevant department chair(s), if any, to discuss the process and timing of extending an offer. The conditions of the appointment will be negotiated between the candidate and the dean based on the guidelines delineated in the school-specific sections of this handbook. Any offer made to a candidate will be made contingent on the Office of Human Resources receiving a copy of the candidate’s official transcript and other represented degrees and certificates directly from the institution that awarded the degree required for the position prior to the start date of employment.
Once the negotiation is completed, all details of the resulting agreement will be specified in a letter of appointment. The dean of the school from which the offer originates will send a letter of appointment to the candidate outlining the term or duration, locus, tenure status, appointment track, title, and salary of the appointment. The letter will also indicate any other specific resources pledged by the University as part of the appointment. The signed letter of appointment forms an agreement between the University and the faculty member. Any inconsistency between the agreement and this University Faculty Handbook must be approved by the provost prior to the issuance of the letter of appointment. In the event of any inconsistency, the letter of appointment will be binding on all parties.