Dear UNT Faculty,
As many of you know, this spring, Faculty Success engaged multiple stakeholders across the university in discussions regarding renaming UNT’s non-tenure track faculty.
Vice Provost Holly Hutchins also sought feedback from the Non-Tenure Track Faculty Resource Group, Faculty Senate and examined data from UNT’s recent COACHE climate survey, with the goal of finding a term that defines these crucial members of our faculty by what they are, rather than what they are not.
I am pleased to share that, after much consideration, the Office of the Provost is renaming the category of non-tenure track faculty to professional faculty. While we considered other options, a majority of stakeholders agreed that this term better reflects the impact our non-tenure track faculty have on UNT’s continued success.
This change only applies to the overall classification of full-time faculty who are not on the tenure track. Responsibilities and specific titles, such as clinical professor, will remain the same. We will work throughout the summer to update policy and process documents, as well as workflow and Faculty Information System documents, prior to the start of the fall semester.
We know there is still much work to be done in our efforts to better support faculty who are not on the tenure track. Beginning with the next Salute to Faculty Excellence awards cycle, professional faculty will be eligible for three of the four UNT Foundation awards: Outstanding Lecturer, Faculty Leadership and Community Engagement. Additionally, Faculty Success is working with deans and chairs to encourage more professional track faculty to pursue professional growth through Faculty Development Leave. I want to thank Vice Provost Hutchins for leading this effort to ensure all of our faculty are valued and supported.
The impact of UNT’s remarkable faculty extends far beyond the classroom. You are scholars, mentors, colleagues and leaders, and your dedication helps our students and community thrive. This is just one of many steps we are taking to recognize the countless ways you support our university each and every day.
Michael A. McPherson, Ph.D.
Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs