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Establish or Discontinue Joint Tenure Track Appointments for Existing Faculty
Revised April 2014
There are two types of joint appointments which may involve only LSA units or may extend to other schools/colleges at the University of Michigan:
- the faculty member has a tenure-track appointment in more than one unit, or
- the faculty member has a tenure-track appointment in one unit and a non-tenure-track appointment in a second unit.
Tenure-track faculty candidates may request a joint academic appointment during the recruitment process and these cases are addressed in the new faculty appointment guidelines
Existing tenure-track faculty may wish to establish a joint academic appointment or to discontinue an existing joint appointment. Depending on the rank there are different parameters:
- For junior (tenure-track) faculty, the initial appointment and the 3rd-year review are particularly appropriate times to consider a joint appointment. However, title and effort changes cannot be made in the two years before the tenure review.
- Senior (tenured) faculty members may request that a joint appointment be established or discontinued at any time.
Requests to establish or discontinue joint appointments must be approved by the College Executive Committee. Faculty at the associate professor or professor rank who desire a joint appointment across college/school lines require additional levels of approval (i.e., the Provost and President in some cases, and the Regents in all cases).
At all ranks the units must formalize a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), which governs the terms of the joint appointment – from funding the position to how the promotion review (if applicable) will be handled. The best time to capture these agreements is during the units’ discussion process.
LSA template MOUs for junior (tenure-track) and senior (tenured) faculty
Information about the third year review (if applicable) and the tenure review and/or promotion processes (if applicable) in the units and the College must be provided to the faculty member at the time of the appointment.
Effective July 2008, the Provost’s office requires the College forward a copy of the final signed MOU for their files.
Approvals for Joint Appointment Requests:
The process begins when a faculty member makes a request to establish or discontinue a joint appointment. Before the paperwork can be submitted to the College, there are levels of approval needed:
- The first approvals come from all the units involved. If one of these units is outside LSA, approval from the dean of that school/college is also needed.
- For junior and senior faculty, the next approval is from the LSA Executive Committee.
- For junior faculty no higher approvals are needed. Once the unit receives the email notification of Executive Committee approval and the Dean’s office has approved the offer letter, the offer may be sent to the candidate.
- For senior faculty, the next approval is from the Provost/President.
- Once the unit receives the email notification of Provost/President approval and the Dean’s office has approved the offer letter, the offer may be sent to the candidate.
- For senior faculty, final approval to appoint the faculty member to the new title is from the Regents. Once the senior faculty member accepts, the Dean’s office will submit a request for the next available Regents’ agenda.
Once the faculty member has accepted the offer (and for senior faculty, the Regents have approved the appointment), the submittal may be sent to Deb Erskine (see section on Submitting the Appointment or Renewal Paperwork below).
Preparing a Request for Executive Committee Approval:
Send request packets for appointment or renewal to Mandy Harrison (email@example.com; 2150 LSA Bldg., 615-0659) for scheduling on the next available Executive Committee agenda.
The packet should include:
- Completed Joint Appointment Request Form
- A memo or email request from the faculty member;
- A current CV;
- A cover memo addressed to the College Executive Committee and signed by the chair(s)/director(s) of all the units involved. The memo should discuss:
- the reasons to establish or discontinue the joint appointment and the implications for the units, including courses to be taught and corresponding enrollments;
- how the role of the faculty member will change in each unit (e.g., mentoring of students or junior faculty, teaching a course, participating in a seminar series, providing expertise in an area not covered by current faculty in the unit, etc.);
- how the unit with the increasing fraction will fund the increase; and
- effective date of the appointment (either 1/1 or 9/1).
- If the cover memo does not include a signature from the primary unit/school/college, include a memo or an email from the chair/director/dean of the primary unit/school/college saying they are aware of and support this change in appointment;
- The Offer Worksheet, draft Offer Letter, and draft Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). These are reviewed by the Offer Group. Use the junior (tenure-track) or senior (tenured) templates for offer letters and MOUs from new faculty appointments
Submitting the Appointment or Renewal Paperwork:
- Junior faculty adding or discontinuing instructional appointments – Once the draft offer and MOU are approved by the College, and the Executive Committee has approved the request, units may send the offer to the faculty member. Once he/she has accepted units may send the submittal to Deb Erskine (2156 LSA Bldg) for processing. Please remember to forward a .pdf of the final signed offer letter and signed MOU to Kathe Harrison (firstname.lastname@example.org).
- Senior faculty adding or discontinuing instructional appointments – Once the Executive Committee has approved the request, the Dean’s office will forward the request to the Provost and President for their endorsement. Once we have their approval and the draft offer and MOU have been approved by the College, units may send the signed offer to the faculty member. Please remember to forward a .pdf of the final signed offer letter and signed MOU to Kathe Harrison (email@example.com). She will prepare the request to the Regents. Once Regents’ approval is received, units may send the submittal to Deb Erskine (2156 LSA Bldg) for processing.
For additional information, please see the Provost’s guidelines on joint appointments.
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