Faculty FAQ

Approved by the Committee on Governance, October 2017

1) What is the “University Faculty”?

The “University Faculty” includes 2,228 faculty employed in Colleges or Schools throughout the University of New Mexico (Main campus including Anderson and Law, Health Sciences Center, UNM West, and all Branch Community Colleges), as defined by The Faculty Handbook A51: Faculty Constitution, Article I. The University Faculty, Section 1. Membership (a) Membership: “The University Faculty shall consist of the Professors, Associate Professors, Assistant Professors, Clinician Educators, Lecturers, and Instructors, including part-time and temporary appointees. The President of the University, Provost, other administrative officers at the level of Vice President and above, Deans, and the Secretary of the University shall be ex-officio members of the Faculty whether or not they are actively engaged in teaching.”

2) Which faculty are allowed to vote on university matters?

The “Voting Faculty” of the university includes 1,972 members of the University Faculty, as defined by The Faculty Handbook A51: Faculty Constitution, Article I. The University Faculty, Section 1. Membership (b) Voting Faculty: “Members of the University who are eligible to vote shall include all members of the University Faculty at professorial ranks (Instructors, Assistant Professors, Associate Professors, and Professors) Clinician Educators, and lecturers. No person holding an interim or temporary faculty appointment shall be a member of the Voting Faculty unless he or she be a member ex officio or on an initial term appointment. The ex officio members of the University Faculty as listed in Section 1(a) shall be ex officio members of the Voting Faculty.”

3) Who serves in the Faculty Senate and how are they elected?

As mandated by the Faculty Constitution (Faculty Handbook A51, Article I, Section 6 (b)(i)), the UNM Faculty Senate is comprised of 68 Senators, 63 of whom are elected by the faculty of their respective Colleges or Schools, and 5 of whom are normally elected by Voting Faculty to serve at large. The number of Senators assigned to each College or School is determined by the University Secretary, based on employment data compiled by Faculty Contracts and authorized by the Committee on Governance. Each College or School must be represented by at least one Senator, and no College or School may have more than 21 Senators.

The 2017-2018 Faculty Senate includes the following number of Senators per College or School:

  • 1 Senator (Architecture & Planning, Honors, Law, Los Alamos, Pharmacy, Population Health, Taos, University College, University Libraries, Valencia)
  • 2 Senators (Anderson, Gallup, Nursing)
  • 3 Senators (Fine Arts)
  • 4 Senators (Education, Engineering)
  • 16 Senators (Arts & Sciences)
  • 21 Senators (Medicine)

Because the above 64 Senators currently serve on behalf of Colleges and Schools, the number of At-Large Senators has been adjusted per the Faculty Constitution to include three faculty serving from Music, Nursing, and Special Education, plus one seat recently made vacant by a faculty departure.

4) Who serves on those other two university faculty committees – the Academic Freedom & Tenure Committee and the Committee on Governance – and how are they elected?

These committees are not part of the Faculty Senate, and their membership is determined by the Voting Faculty in elections administered by the University Secretary with oversight of the Committee on Governance. The 13 members of AF&T and the 5 members of CoG are elected to two- and three-year terms, respectively; only tenured faculty members may serve on AF&T, while any member of the Voting Faculty may serve on the Committee on Governance.