Overall Rating Expired
Overall Score Expired
Liaison Barbara Kviz
Submission Date Feb. 27, 2015
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

Carnegie Mellon University
PA-3: Governance

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete Expired Barbara Kviz
Environmental Coordinator
Facilities Management Services
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Do all enrolled students, regardless of type or status, have an avenue to participate in one or more governance bodies (through direct participation or the election of representatives)?:
Yes

A brief description of the mechanisms through which students have an avenue to participate in one or more governance bodies:

Carnegie Mellon University students are able to participate in the election process for a variety of governing bodies, such as Student Government, the Undergraduate Student Senate, Graduate Student Assembly, Student Dormitory Council (SDC), PanHellenic Association (PHA), Interfraternity Council (IFC), and Multicultural Greek Council (MGC).

There are four elected Student Government positions that represent the CMU student body: the President, Vice President, Vice President for Organizations, and Vice President for Finance. These positions are elected in April for the next academic year by the entire student body. The Vice Presidents for Organizations and Finance represent and advocate for Student Government Recognized Student Organizations. There are 280 recognized, student-run organizations. These organizations all receive a portion of the Student Activities Fee that is managed by the Vice President for Finance.

The Undergraduate Student Senate represents the undergraduate student population through representatives from each college. There is one representative for each 140 students within each college. The election process occurs in April for the next academic year.

The Graduate Student Assembly represents the graduate student body. Representatives are selected in an informal election process within each Graduate Department. The number of representatives is determined by the number of graduate students within the department. This process occurs throughout the academic year.

The Student Dormitory Council represents and advocates for the resident students living in on campus housing to the administration, to other campus organizations, and to the general public. Each dorm has a representative that attends the SDC General Body.

The Panhellenic Association is the governing council for the 6 sororities on campus.

The Interfraternity Council is a self-governing body representing the 12 member fraternities at Carnegie Mellon.

The Multicultural Greek Council is the governing body for the 3 culturally-based fraternities and sororities on campus.


Is there at least one student representative on the institution’s governing body who was elected by peers or appointed by a representative student body or organization?:
No

A brief description of student representation on the governing body, including how the representatives are selected:

CMU does not have an overarching “governing body.” There is a President’s Council, however, there are different committees that are a part of decision making at the University.


Do students have a formal role in decision-making in regard to the following?:
Yes or No
Establishing organizational mission, vision, and/or goals Yes
Establishing new policies, programs, or initiatives Yes
Strategic and long-term planning Yes
Existing or prospective physical resources Yes
Budgeting, staffing and financial planning Yes
Communications processes and transparency practices Yes
Prioritization of programs and projects Yes

A brief description of the formal student role in regard to each area indicated, including examples from the previous three years:

Students have a formal role in decision-making in regard to one or more of the following:

• Establishing organizational mission, vision, and/or goals
The University has created many avenues to seek student feedback and input through student advisory committees. These are held on the departmental level, as well as on the university level. For example, there is a Presidential Student Advisory Committee that the University President takes point and a diverse selection of students from all majors and years have an opportunity to learn about what is ahead for the University, plus share ideas and feedback to the President.

• Establishing new policies, programs, or initiatives
Carnegie Mellon University students have a formal role in decision-making in regards to establishing new policies, programs, and initiatives. In order for a new student policy to be created or revised, there is an official vetting process. The Undergraduate Student Senate and the Graduate Student Assembly need the opportunity to review drafts and vote on the final version.

Here are a couple of examples where students have had the opportunity to create programs: The Undergraduate Student Senate initiated through a campus-wide referendum (vote) to implement a media fee to be charged to all undergraduate students to pay for a newspaper program, Collegiate Readership Program, through USA Today. This was supported by The Board of Trustees. Another example where students create new initiatives is a newly established credit course on wellness and being successful at CMU, called Thrive@CMU.

• Strategic and long-term planning
• Existing or prospective physical resources
As the University has renewed its 10 year Master Plan, students were represented on the Campus Design & Review Committee. The Campus Design & Review Committee also approves other additions and changes to campus. As part of the master plan, there are extensions being planned for the Jared L. Cohon University Center. Representatives from a couple student organizations related to theatre and media technology were invited to weigh in on aspects of the new Studio Theatre being built in the extension.
The Facilities Management Services has created several task forces and advisory committees to obtain student feedback and input on the physical campus.

• Budgeting, staffing and financial planning
Students are also invited to participate and provide feedback in the university staff selection process to meet candidates that were invited for on-campus interviews.
The VP for Campus Affairs has established a strong relationship with Student Government regarding University financial transparency and updating them regarding tuition increases.

• Communications processes and transparency practices
• Prioritization of programs and projects
The Dean of Students meets bi-weekly with Student Government Executives to update them on campus wide initiatives/programs/issues that might impact students in order to gather feedback, ideas, and share concerns.


Do all staff, regardless of type or status, have an avenue to participate in one or more governance bodies (through direct participation or the election of representatives)?:
Yes

A brief description of the mechanisms through which all staff have an avenue to participate in one or more governance bodies:

Staff Council serves as the voice for staff at Carnegie Mellon University through policy advocacy and community involvement, providing an organization that enables staff to realize their full potential and impact their quality of life. Staff Council is comprised of 60 elected staff members.


Is there at least one non-supervisory staff representative on the institution’s governing body who was elected by peers or appointed by a representative staff body or organization?:
No

A brief description of non-supervisory staff representation on the governing body, including how the representatives are selected:

CMU does not have an overarching “governing body.” There is a President’s Council, however, there are different committees that are a part of decision making at the University.


Do non-supervisory staff have a formal role in decision-making in regard to the following? :
Yes or No
Establishing organizational mission, vision, and/or goals Yes
Establishing new policies, programs, or initiatives Yes
Strategic and long-term planning Yes
Existing or prospective physical resources Yes
Budgeting, staffing and financial planning Yes
Communications processes and transparency practices Yes
Prioritization of programs and projects Yes

A brief description of the formal staff role in regard to each area indicated, including examples from the previous three years:

• Staff Council is the organization on campus that represents staff who are not represented by Faculty Senate or another collective bargaining agreement. All members of Staff Council are volunteers who are elected to their positions. As a hybrid senate and representative body, the organization is composed of two divisional representatives per university division and an equal number of at-large representatives. Participation is open to all eligible staff regardless of whether they hold supervisory positions or not.

• The university values the contributions of all of its stakeholders, including staff. This is evidenced by the fact that Staff Council has representation on several university-wide committees that help shape the university’s administrative policies and procedures. Examples of these committees include the American with Disabilities Act Compliance Committee, the Parking Board, the Dining Services Advisory Board, the University Discipline Committee, the Sexual Harassment Advisory Panel, Green Practices Committee, etc.


Do all faculty, regardless of type or status, have an avenue to participate in one or more governance bodies (through direct participation or the election of representatives)?:
Yes

A brief description of the mechanisms through which all faculty (including adjunct faculty) have an avenue to participate in one or more governance bodies:

The representative assembly of the Faculty Organization is the Faculty Senate. The Faculty Senate is empowered to conduct all the affairs of the Faculty Organization except for those otherwise specified the Constitution and its Bylaws.

The membership of the Faculty Senate consists of elected members, member ex-officios, and appointed members. The number of members in each of these categories and the length of their terms are specified in the Bylaws.


Is there at least one teaching or research faculty representative on the institution’s governing body who was elected by peers or appointed by a representative faculty body or organization?:
No

A brief description of faculty representation on the governing body, including how the representatives are selected:

CMU does not have an overarching “governing body.” There is a President’s Council, however, there are different committees that are a part of decision making at the University.


Do faculty have a formal role in decision-making in regard to the following?:
Yes or No
Establishing organizational mission, vision, and/or goals Yes
Establishing new policies, programs, or initiatives Yes
Strategic and long-term planning Yes
Existing or prospective physical resources Yes
Budgeting, staffing and financial planning Yes
Communications processes and transparency practices Yes
Prioritization of programs and projects Yes

A brief description of the formal faculty role in regard to each area indicated, including examples from the previous three years:

• Establishing new policies, programs, or initiatives:
Policy on Policies flow chart, http://www.cmu.edu/policies/flowchart.html

• Strategic and long-term planning:
Strategic Plan 2015 with collaboration from faculty, staff and students, http://www.cmu.edu/strategic-plan/index.html

• Budgeting, staffing and financial planning:
Faculty Organization Bylaws, Item 14: The Budget and Financial Affairs Committee14.a) The Budget and Financial Affairs Committee consists of no fewer than six and no more than 10 members of the Faculty Organization who hold no administrative appointments. The members of the Budget and Financial Affairs Committee are appointed by the chair of the Faculty Organization for three-year terms of office. Each year, one of the members is selected as chair of the committee by the chair of the Faculty Organization.

14.b) In addition to the members described above, the vice president for finance and planning, the university treasurer, the provost and the chair of the Faculty Organization serve as ex officiis members of the committee.


The website URL where information about the institution’s governance structure is available:
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