In March, our Board of Trustees voted to grant tenure to eight deserving faculty members.
We, like many other colleges and universities in the United States, grant academic tenure to faculty members who have met certain obligations, competencies and goals set forth by the college and the departments in which they work, in accordance with the laws and regulations of the state of Washington.
The system of tenure is in place primarily to protect the right to academic freedom: without protection, the scholarly community may refrain from challenging the status quo by pursuing safer lines of inquiry. By giving scholars the intellectual autonomy to research controversial issues, original ideas and solutions are more likely to flourish. Tenure also promotes professionalism among the faculty.
The tenure process, as outlined in the Tenure Guidelines, consists of a rigorous three-year probationary period, with three levels of review.
- Tenure Evaluation Subcommittee (TES) consists of members chosen by the candidate within their division, and approved by the Tenure Review Committee (TRC). This group gathers information and data in support of the candidate’s tenure, and mentors and assists the candidate throughout the three-year process.
- The Tenure Review Committee, which includes the Vice President for Instruction, six members elected by the faculty and a student representative, reviews the documentation prepared by the TES to ensure that similar standards and expectations are met across the college’s many disciplines. The TRC provides an objective look at each document to ensure that the case supporting the recommendations of the TES is sound. During the first two years of candidates’ employment, the President uses the recommendation of the TRC to decide whether to continue the probationary period.
- Finally, the Board of Trustees, giving serious consideration to the recommendation of the TRC, decides to either grant or not grant tenure.
All candidates for tenure must:
- demonstrate a strong commitment to student success through teaching and learning excellence;
- advise and mentor students on academic and discipline/career requirements and goals;
- participate in college governance and decision-making;
- build collaborative relationships within the BC community and the community at large; and
- foster a positive, caring learning environment.