September 1, 2000
To the UCSF Faculty:
The structure of the University of California has been in place for about 140 years and has produced the world's finest public university. The model that has worked so extraordinarily well is that of "shared governance." There is a clearly defined dual responsibility for the life of the university that is shared by its faculty and administration. While the faculty has a clearly identifiable responsibility for curriculum and degrees, it also has an important role in formulating and carrying out policy on a vastly wider range of topics that affect the life of the faculty, administration, staff and students. The Academic Senate is the organization through which the faculty finds its voice.
The Senate is structured into a variety of standing committees, including Faculty Councils for the Schools of Dentistry, Medicine, Nursing and Pharmacy. These Committees are the vehicle by which policies, procedures, and a host of issues are identified, evaluated and acted upon in relation to academic promotion, faculty welfare, planning and budget, clinical services, academic freedom, academic courses, educational policy and more.
All Academic Senate Committees have current information listed in this Web Site and I encourage you to familiarize yourself with the issues and communicate regularly with Committee Chairs to voice your concerns. These Committees play an important role in formulating policies here at UCSF and on a University (statewide) level. UCSF Academic Senate Faculty also represents our campus on statewide Academic Senate Committees. We greatly need your help, both at the local and statewide level to determine and express the faculty's wishes and to help formulate policy that will benefit and be reflective of the needs of all faculty.
Each spring, the Academic Senate asks UCSF faculty to volunteer for Senate service, and we are grateful for the responses that many faculty have given in the past. We encourage your continued interest and your willingness and desire to participate in decisions that affect your life here at UCSF. I want to encourage you to look over the Senate’s Web page and identify Committees or areas that interest you so that you may volunteer when the time comes.
In addition, the Senate will periodically seek your opinion on a variety of issues, generally using e-mails and Web balloting. It will help us know how best to represent you and I encourage you to respond to these queries. You are always welcome, of course, to send me a note at ASCHAIR@senate.ucsf.edu with your comments, questions and/or suggestions.
I hope that you will turn to the Senate’s Web page fairly often. We will try to keep you abreast of the many areas in which the Senate has a role and try to keep you informed about important issues here at UCSF and within the University at large. We are always grateful for your comments regarding the usefulness of what we provide and are happy to hear about things you feel we are not providing.
I look forward to hearing from you over the next year and encourage your attendance at the Senate Division Meetings. Please feel free to let me know how the Academic Senate can serve you better.
Lawrence H. Pitts, MD
Chair, Academic Senate