No Confidence Vote – Arts and Sciences Faculty Response

Information! On March 21, the Faculty of Arts & Sciences voted for a resolution of “no confidence” in President Lewis Duncan, the first instance in Rollins history. 

 

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Given the significance of recent events, the A&S faculty would like to address the reasons and make clear the concerns prompting its vote of no confidence in President Duncan. We must respectfully disagree with his view of affairs and stress the substantive concerns we see linked to these events.

The president suggests that the Quality Enhancement Plan and Demonstration of Learning Team represent faculty consultation on curricular matters. But these initiatives simply are not relevant, for they are linked to accreditation requirements of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) and are part of an ongoing institutional process begun before the president’s tenure and unconnected to the concerns prompting the faculty’s vote.

While the president acknowledges institutional planning, he fails to address his repeated pattern of ignoring faculty, staff, and student efforts in favor of arbitrary action.

A vote of no confidence is a blunt message linked to the president’s actions. In passing this resolution the faculty has acted in good faith to voice its concern about his pattern of troubling decision-making, which is more informed by trends than by reasoned examination of our institution’s history, strengths, and identity. As noted in our resolution, the president’s lack of communication and reluctance to engage the faculty on significant curricular matters is driving these concerns.
While the president acknowledges institutional planning, he fails to address his repeated pattern of ignoring faculty, staff, and student efforts in favor of arbitrary action. Faced with no clear path to create unity of purpose, the faculty acted in good faith to voice its concerns to the Board of Trustees. The faculty recognizes the challenges facing higher education, and it is acting in the hope that Rollins will be able to face these challenges as a strong and united community.

Signed,

Vidhu Aggarwal,
Associate Professor of English

Barry Allen,
Professor of Environmental Studies

Pedro Bernal,
Professor of Chemistry

Wendy Brandon,
Professor of Education

Alexander Boguslawski,
Professor of Russian

Dexter Boniface,
Weddell Chair of the Americas and Associate Professor of Political Science

Gabriel Barreneche,
Associate Professor of Spanish

Sharon Carnahan,
Professor of Psychology

Julian Chambliss,
Associate Professor of History

Martha Cheng,
Associate Professor of English

Tom Cook,
Professor of Philosophy

Don Davison,
Professor of Political Science

Joan Davison,
Professor of Political Science

Philip Deaver,
Professor of English

Kimberly Dennis,
Associate Professor of Art History

Hoyt Edge,
Hugh F. and Jeanette G. McKean Chair of Philosophy

Lynda Glennon,
Professor of Sociology

Dana Hargrove,
Associate Professor of Art

Paul Harris,
Professor of Psychology

Philip Kozel,
Associate Professor of Economics

Harry Kypraios,
Professor of Economics

Tom Lairson,
Ronald G. and N. Jayne Gelbman Chair of International Business

Barry Levis,
Professor of History

Susan Libby,
Professor of Art History

Lee Lines,
Professor of Environmental Studies

Jennifer Queen,
Associate Professor of Psychology

L. Ryan Musgrave,
Associate Professor of Philosophy

Robert Moore,
Professor of Anthropology

Maurice O’Sullivan,
Kenneth Curry Chair in Literature, Professor of English

Charles Rock,
Professor of Economics

Ed Royce,
Professor of Sociology

Eric Schultz,
Professor of Economics

Rachel Simmons,
Professor of Art

Bruce Stephenson,
Professor of Environmental Studies

Claire Strom,
Rapetti-Trunzo Chair of History

Kenna Taylor,
Professor of Economics

Rick Vitray,
Archibald Granville Bush Chair of Mathematics

Jay Yellen,
Archibald Granville Bush Chair of Mathematics

Visiting and untenured faculty members, lecturers, and adjuncts were not sent this letter for their signature because of their vulnerable status.

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