Working Groups for Policy Changes

Overview: Working Groups for Policy Changes is an initiative within TIGERS ADVANCE that aims to enhance faculty mentoring and leadership development. This is in keeping with the ClemsonForward plan in terms of “advancing workplace quality of life.” We will establish a series of “NetWorkshops”: monthly meetings to build mentoring networks organically, and to identify aspects of the faculty experience that need to be improved, possible policy changes, and ways to act on these ideas.

Structure: NetWorkshops will meet regularly, starting with face-to-face meetings (similar to the Women’s Faculty Coffee Hour) to begin the dialog, allow people to vent, and build trust. Initial meetings will be held early in the semester on different days of the week and times of day to allow broad participation. After a few weeks of face-to-face meetings, we will establish a series of online meetings for the rest of the academic year to allow off-campus faculty to participate.

Topics: NetWorkshop discussions will focus on topics of interest to the group. Short readings will be identified periodically to give the group a sense of direction and common understanding. Potential topics include institutional change, mentoring and effective policy changes at other public institutions.

Documentation and Accountability: NetWorkshops will facilitate open sharing of our experiences, ideas, concerns, successes and conflicts in a way that does not threaten or have detrimental effects on individuals. Members must be able to express themselves freely knowing that other participants will listen and respect their point of view. To that end, a blog or similar online portal will be created as a means for collecting de-identified notes on main points and documenting ideas and initiatives. Representatives from TIGERS ADVANCE will share ideas and recommendations with the Provost and Associate Provost for Faculty Affairs, who have committed to facilitating policy changes identified through TIGERS ADVANCE.

Potential Participants: NetWorkshops will include female and under-represented minority faculty members from STEM disciplines, as well as those who have been engaged in campus initiatives from all disciplines. Representatives from non-academic tracks such as Human Resources and the office of the Chief Financial Officer will be invited to provide a sense of feasibility for ideas generated. Separate tracks may be established, at least initially, for faculty and administrators to ensure a sense of trust and confidentiality.

For more information please contact the program lead: Dr. Mary Beth Kurz