Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 60.89
Liaison Eva Rocke
Submission Date June 30, 2021

STARS v2.2

University of Montana
PA-3: Inclusive and Participatory Governance

Status Score Responsible Party
2.75 / 3.00 Eva Rocke
Sustainability Director
Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have formal participatory or shared governance bodies through which the following stakeholders can regularly participate in the governance of the institution?:
Yes or No
Students Yes
Academic staff Yes
Non-academic staff Yes

A brief description of the institution’s formal participatory or shared governance bodies:

The Faculty of The University of Montana play a significant role in institutional governance. Since 1961, the Faculty Senate has been at the center of faculty participation in the shared governance of the University. The Senate reviews, debates, and votes on issues pertaining to the academic welfare of UM in consultation and cooperation with the President and his/her administration.

Faculty are members of the University and have a vested interest in areas of academic excellence, as well as the general welfare of the institution. Committee service provides an opportunity to strengthen collegiality and shared purpose with fellow colleagues. Consultation with the expertise of the professorate assures the success of the University. Active faculty participation is needed for governing and ad-hoc committees to assure our joint success.

Formal student participation in UM governance is facilitated through the Associated Students of the University of Montana (ASUM). The ASUM Student Government is recognized as the representative voice for UM students and is administered by 3 executive offices (President, Vice President, and Business Manager) as well as a 26-member senate elected each spring for a one-year term. This body meets on a weekly basis to discuss student issues and is governed by the ASUM Constitution, Bylaws, House Rules, Personnel, and Fiscal Policies.

Staff and other non-faculty employees are represented through the Staff Senate, which is also led by four executive officers (President, President-elect, Secretary, and Finance Officer). Staff senators serve a two-year term.

Total number of individuals on the institution’s highest governing body:

Number of students representing their peers as official members of the institution’s highest governing body:

Number of academic staff representing their peers as official members of the institution’s highest governing body:

Number of non-academic staff representing their peers as official members of the institution’s highest governing body:

Number of women serving as official members of the institution’s highest governing body:

Percentage of official members of the highest governing body that are women:

Website URL where information about the institution’s highest governing body may be found:
Does the institution host or support one or more formal bodies through which external stakeholders have a regular voice in institutional decisions that affect them?:

A brief description of the campus-community council or equivalent body that gives external stakeholders a regular voice in institutional decisions that affect them:

Advisory boards exist across campus and use various means to engage external stakeholders. Many smaller programs also have external boards that help shape direction for UM (Pursue Your Passion, Bauccus Institute, Mansfield Center, etc.). These boards provide input that the deans then put into conversation with the broader academic planning for the institution.

The UM Alumni Association board (20 members of varying graduation years and backgrounds) connects with alumni and provides input on various university-sponsored activities and programs. In addition to their two annual meetings, the Alumni Board coordinates and hosts annual open meetings for all alumni. The President's Council of community members, while inactive during COVID, also provides opportunities for members of the broader Missoula community to learn about and provide feedback on matters pertaining to UM operations and programs by meeting directly with the President and other executive leadership.

The AccelerateMT board engages with employers and industry representatives throughout the year as well. UM leads industry roundtables to gather input from employers on what UM can and should be providing to meet workforce needs.

The Strategic Planning Coordinating Council and the University Design Team consulted widely with the community over the last two years' of planning and research to establish our Priorities for Action. This included open community forums as well as sector-specific consultation. UM will be establishing a Strategy Committee that will be a standing University Committee built into our annual operating rhythm. That committee will, among other charges, build avenues for consultation with stakeholders.

Number of people from underrepresented groups serving as official members of the institution’s highest governing body.:

Website URL where information about the institution’s governance structure is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:

In response to reviewer feedback, we've added detail and examples to Part 4 in an effort to meet the needs of that credit. UM does not currently have a standing "town/gown" committee or a standing scheduled meeting that is open to anyone from the broader Missoula community, but several of the boards and advisory groups listed continue to facilitate open forums (open to all community members) that are open to anyone on an as-needed basis. If the goal of the credit is to measure the extent to which an institution provides opportunities for community member input on issues that impact them, we have found in our research that there are many, many opportunities available, both topical and general.

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution and complete the Data Inquiry Form.