I. Equal Opportunity Policy
The Equal Opportunity Policy, approved by the Oakland University Board of Trustees on May 21, 1981; and amended by the Board of Trustees on June 8, 1995, states:
Oakland University reaffirms its unwavering commitment to equality of opportunity for all persons. In a society that relies on an informed, educated citizenry, no one should be denied the opportunity to attain his or her fullest potential. The University shall strive to build a community that welcomes and honors all persons and that provides equal opportunity in education and employment. It is the policy of Oakland University that there shall be no unlawful discrimination against any person on the basis of race, sex, sexual orientation, age, height, weight, handicap, color, religion, creed, national origin or ancestry, marital status, familial status or veteran status. The University shall affirmatively follow the provisions of applicable State and Federal anti-discrimination legislation in all of its activities in this area and so reaffirms its policy at this time. To the extent that this policy conflicts with first amendment or other legal rights of members of the university community, such other relevant legal provisions shall control. Furthermore, this policy shall not be interpreted to modify eligibility criteria for student and employment benefits or modify the legal definition of the terms "spouse" or "dependent."
The Affirmative Action Policy, approved by the Board on May 10, 1989, states:
In order to accomplish the goals set forth in the institution's role and mission statement, it is essential that Oakland University's work force be appropriately representative of all racial and ethnic groups and of both genders. Accordingly, the University establishes an Affirmative Action Plan for the purpose of elimination and/or avoiding racial and sexual imbalances in traditionally segregated job categories. The goal of the Plan shall be to achieve within the University community a work force that is reasonably representative of minorities and women as measured by the race and sex mix of persons with the requisite skills within the reasonable employee recruiting area of the University. Once the goal is reached, a plan will no longer be necessary or appropriate, since any significant imbalances will have been eliminated. The University's commitment to equal opportunity shall, however, continue undiminished.
The Plan shall not create "quotas" that must be met, but rather "goals" for minorities and women that promote consideration of affirmative action concerns when establishing and filling positions.
The University administration shall develop and implement a plan in conformance with the policy enunciated above. It is expected that goals and procedures contained within the Plan will change periodically in accordance with conditions and experience. . .
All persons with hiring responsibilities have the obligation to ensure compliance with the University's equal opportunity and affirmative action policies and the Affirmative Action Plan and its associated hiring procedures.
Using these Board approved statements as a framework, the faculty hiring procedures described in this document have been developed. It is designed to assist each academic department to develop a faculty representative of the population of qualified professionals in the discipline. It is also meant to support the required analyses of recruitment and hiring patterns and to assure consistent policy implementation.
II. Office of Equal Opportunity
The Office of Equal Opportunity (OEO) assists in institutional compliance concerning equal opportunity. Therefore, the Director of the OEO must be consulted in the development of position descriptions, advertisements, recruitment plans, and selection criteria. The director is available to advise on selection criteria and provide other assistance during the screening process.
1. Deans, the Director of the Eye Research Institute (ERI) and chairs anticipating open positions as well as potential search committee members will be provided with recruitment training.
2. Vice President for Academic Affairs authorizes filling position.
3. Department chairperson appoints the Search Committee with the approval of the Dean. Where the college, the institute, the library or a school does not maintain separate departments, the Dean or Director of the ERI shall appoint the Search Committee.A check list will be provided to Deans or Director of the ERI to assist in identifying issues relevant to the search.
4. Search Committee:
- Reviews provided assessment checklist to organize search effectively.
- Contacts Office of Equal Opportunity for forms and further information relative to implementation of this procedure.
- Develops proposed minimum qualifications and a position description subject to administrative approval as provided on the Faculty Recruitment Record.
- Prepares advertisement and posting.
- Develops selection criteria.
- Develops recruitment plan.
- Completes section A of Faculty Recruitment Record and identifies initial sources for Section B.
5. Dean or Director of ERI reviews section A and proposed sources in Section B of Faculty Recruitment Record.
6. After approval has been received from the Dean or Director of ERI, the Search Committee, through departmental or school channels:
- Sends posting to AAUP, Office of Equal Opportunity and the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs.
- Places advertisement in external publications and makes external contacts.
- Receives candidate materials and sends acknowledgments.
- Provides the Office of Equal Opportunity with the names and contact addresses of all candidates meeting minimum qualifications. The OEO will then send these individuals affirmative action inquiry cards.
7. Office of Equal Opportunity provides Search Committee with summary of responses to affirmative action inquiry cards, and any other information relative to the availability of members of protected groups for the position on a timely basis. The OEO may recommend to the Search Committee continuation of search for qualified candidates when the initial pool of candidates does not provide a representative group of candidates.
8. Search Committee screens candidates to arrive at a proposed group of finalists, updates section B and completes section C of Faculty Recruitment Record and sends it to the Dean, Director of the ERI or Chairperson.
9. Chairperson of Department, Dean or Director of ERI, Director of Office of Equal Opportunity and Office of the Vice President of Academic Affairs approve section C. The Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs may require a continuation of the search for qualified candidates.
10. Finalists are interviewed and otherwise additionally screened by the hiring unit and an employment recommendation is formulated. Hiring unit completes section D of the Faculty Recruitment Record and a written narrative (see Appendix A).
11. Chairperson of Department, Dean or Director of ERI, Director of Office of Equal Opportunity, and the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs approve section D. The Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs will review all hiring recommendations with the OEO prior to rendering a decision.
12. Dean or Director of the ERI makes offer of employment to an approved candidate subject to Board approval for tenure track positions.
III. Guidelines For Implementing Procedure
These guidelines expand upon the procedures in the appointment process for faculty. Oakland University has developed these procedures in an attempt to provide equal employment opportunity and to recruit a staff of the highest quality.
In contemporary society, faculties which include representative numbers of women, persons with disabilities and minority groups can provide a more effective academic environment. An integrated faculty supplies important role models for students of all groups and may be more sensitive to the special problems of minority students.
When faculty positions are to be filled, the department chairperson will appoint a Search Committee. It is recommended that female, minority and persons with disabilities be included wherever possible.
The Search Committee shall develop the position description, which shall include the minimum qualifications for the position. The Federal Guidelines for Employee Selection Criteria require that all qualifications used to screen applicants be directly related to the position being filled. Those qualifications must all be necessary to perform the work successfully and be measurable to demonstrable. Every reasonable effort shall be made to avoid using standards which are not necessary to perform the responsibilities of the position and which might have the effect of excluding protected groups.
An advertisement shall be developed by the Search Committee. It must include the minimum qualifications for the position, and a statement that Oakland University is an equal opportunity and affirmative action institution. The Dean or Director of ERIs approval of the position description, minimum qualifications and the advertisement is required prior to dissemination of the advertisement.
The Search Committee shall also prepare a recruitment plan. A good faith effort must be made to attract female, minority and disabled applicants by contacting organizations and publishers which serve these groups, as well as individuals who may know of qualified candidates. This effort shall be documented on section B of the Faculty Recruitment Record. The recruitment plan can be expanded during the search.
A position should be advertised in appropriate publications at least two months in advance of the closing date for accepting applications. A closing date should be included in the advertisement; the following language is suggested: "In order to ensure consideration, applications must be received by (date)."
The Office of Equal Opportunity must be consulted in development of job descriptions, advertisements and recruiting plans.
The Search Committee shall develop selection criteria, subject to the approval of the department chairperson and the Dean or Director of ERI. Accurate and valid criteria are essential to nondiscriminatory rankings of the candidates. Some examples of selection criteria are: amount, relevance and quality of formal education; amount, relevance and quality of previous teaching experience; amount, relevance and quality of research activities, publications or presentations; ability to communicate effectively with students and staff, and involvement in professional organizations. Further information regarding development of valid selection criteria may be obtained by contacting the Office of Equal Opportunity.
In screening applicants, the Search Committee should first eliminate all persons who do not meet the stated minimum qualifications (non-qualified). The confidential affirmative action inquiry cards shall be sent to all qualified candidates by the Office of Equal Opportunity. The Search Committee shall provide the office with a list of names and addresses of all candidates who meet the minimum qualifications. It is to the committee's benefit to submit these names and addresses on a rolling basis in order to determine whether the pool is representative as early as possible in the process.
After initial screening, the Search Committee should evaluate the materials submitted by each of the remaining candidates. Consideration of each candidate should be based on the selection criteria developed by the Committee. Evaluation techniques must be uniformly applied to all candidates.
Following the screening and a review of data provided by the Office of Equal Opportunity from the affirmative action inquiries, the Committee shall recommend candidates to be interviewed, and section C of the Faculty Recruitment Record shall be completed by the Search Committee and reviewed by the Dean or Director of ERI, the Director of OEO and the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs. Where there is evidence that qualified minorities, women or persons with disabilities should be available in the potential pool of candidates, the Committee may be required to continue the search for qualified candidates. The decision to extend the search shall be made by the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs after consultation with the Dean or Director of ERI and the Director of OEO.
The objective of the campus interview phase is to assess an individual's qualifications to perform the required duties of the position, as designated by the job description and selection criteria. The Search Committee should ensure that all candidates are treated in an equivalent manner, both in respect to the substance of the interview and the arrangements on and off campus.
Upon completion of the interviews, the candidates shall be discussed by the Search Committee and a candidate or candidates recommended, in order of preference. Where two or more candidates possess similar qualifications, consideration shall be given to the impact the selected candidate will have on the achievement of Oakland University's affirmative action goals.
At the conclusion of the process, section D of the Faculty Recruitment Record shall be completed by the Search Committee and reviewed by the Dean or Director of ERI, the Director of the Office of Equal Opportunity, and the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs, the latter after consultation with the OEO. The committee is expected to support Section D by attaching a narrative. An example narrative can be found in Appendix A. The offer of employment shall be made by the Dean or Director of ERI for regular full-time faculty positions and for visiting appointments.
IV. Visiting Faculty Reappointment or Transfer to Tenure Track
- Following a tenure track search, special considerations may lead the University to appoint a person in the applicant pool to visiting status, rather than tenure track status. Such a person may at a later time be transferred to tenure track status with the Vice President for Academic Affairs' approval, without further search. If the search was initially for a visiting faculty appointment, this exception generally does not apply.
- If, following a visiting appointment search, a person in the applicant pool is appointed to visiting status, that person may be reappointed to visiting status without further search.
- In unusual circumstances, such as an illness occurring to a tenure track faculty member one week before the term begins, a unit may ask for a waiver to appoint a visiting faculty member.
V. Record Retention
The Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs shall keep a position folder for each position filled. That folder shall contain the Faculty Recruitment Record, copies of the position description, advertisement(s), selection criteria, all applicants' resumes and other materials used to evaluate each candidate. At the conclusion of the search process, the academic unit shall forward a memorandum to the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs indicating whether the records have been forwarded (in labeled boxes) to the Kresge Archives or remain in the unit. These records will be retained for three years after the date of hire of the successful candidate.
The Office of Equal Opportunity shall retain all records of information received from the confidential affirmative action inquiry cards in a position file folder for three years after the date of hire of the successful candidate.
VI. Part-Time Faculty Appointments
The Board of Trustees' policy of nondiscrimination and affirmative action in hiring and employment decision also applies to the appointment of part-time faculty. Efforts will be made by the library and each department and school to recruit qualified minorities, women and persons with disabilities for part-time faculty appointments.
The University recognizes that each unit has different practices and needs relative to the hiring of part-time faculty. Development of a uniform policy may not be responsive to these differing needs. Nonetheless, some monitoring of recruitment and hiring practices must be done to assure compliance with Board of Trustees' policies.
Occasionally, there may be an immediate need to fill a faculty position, and inadequate time to conduct an appropriate search and follow the recruitment and screening procedures outlined above.
The Department Chairperson, Dean or Director of ERI shall prepare a written request for waiver of the requirements of the Faculty Hiring Procedures. The request shall detail which steps in these procedures should be foregone.
It shall also include a description of the position, the resume and other relevant information about any candidate proposed to fill that position, and the reasons why the requirements of the Faculty Hiring Procedures cannot be met.
Both the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs and the Director of the Office of Equal Opportunity shall receive copies of the waiver request. The OEO shall provide a written recommendation regarding the waiver request to the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs.
The waiver request must be approved by the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs and the Dean or Director of ERI, where the department chairperson makes the request. Consideration will be given to the department, school or college's equal opportunity efforts and accomplishments.