Special Faculty Ranks and Appointments

Special Faculty Ranks and Appointments

Abstract:
This section of the Faculty Handbook describes the faculty ranks of Distinguished Professor, Distinguished Service Professor, University Professor, and endowed positions.
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Faculty

SPECIAL FACULTY RANKS AND APPOINTMENTS


Board Rule 508 (“Establishment of Academic Chairs, Professorships, and Endowed Lectureships and the Designation of Holders of Academic Chairs and Professorships”) specifies that the rank of Distinguished Professor is a campus-wide appointment, recognizes international accomplishments, is to be limited in number, and is to be recommended to the Board by the appropriate President and the Chancellor in order to confer richly deserved prestige and honor on those selected to receive this designation. The following criteria will be used in determining the selection of a Distinguished Professor:

     a.  Accomplishment bringing great credit to UAB.
     b.  Noteworthy academic service to UAB as a teacher and/or research scientist and/or clinician.
     c.  International recognition for scholarly contribution to the individual's chosen profession.
     d.  Outstanding performance of service associated with the individual's chosen professional or academic discipline.
     e.  Numerous achievements and extensive peer recognition in the individual's chosen professional or academic discipline.
     f.  Unstinting dedication to standards of excellence in all endeavors.
     g.  Exemplary character and integrity reflecting great honor upon UAB.

Procedures for Appointing Individuals to the Rank of Distinguished Professor:

     a.  The appropriate dean, after consultation with the approriate deparmental chairpersons, will recommend the appointment to the Provost.
     b.  The Provost shall seek the advice of a committee of five members, appointed by the Provost, consisting of four senior faculty not holding administrative appointments, two of whom are from the department of primary appointment of the candidate, and an individual currently holding the rank of Distinguished Professor, if available, who will serve as chair.  Affirmative approval of at least three committee members is required for the Provost to recommend the candidate to the President.
     c.  If the Provost's decision is favorable, the Provost shall then recommend the appointment to the President.
     d.  If the President's recommendation is favorable, the President shall then recommend the appointment to the Board of Trustees.
     e.  The preceding steps apply to the appointment of individuals who are already members of the UAB faculty.  In the case of someone to be brought in from the outside at this rank, the usual procedures for recruitment and appointment to the rank of Professor will be followed, after which the procedure described in Steps (a) through (d) will be followed.

Notes:

     a.  It is vital that this procedure be conducted in such a way that, when the decision is made not to appointment someone to this rank, there is no awkward sense of being turned down.  Being appointed Distinguished Professor should continue to be regarded as a signal honor and not merely a next step above the rank of Professor.
     b.  Where appropriate, individuals with the rank of Distinguished Professor should be provided special financial support for their research and professional activities.
     c.  The primary difference between Distinguished Professor and University Professor is that Distinguished Professor recognizes the achievement in a single field; whereas, University Professor is the appropriate designation for individuals whose work is more interdisciplinary in nature.
     d.  Individuals holding this rank should be allowed the greatest latitude in apportioning their time between teaching, writing, and scholarly research.

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At UAB the designation of Distinguished Service Professor is treated as a variation of Distinguished Professor. The title is used as a way of honoring members of the faculty who have contributed to UAB through long years of distinguished service in administrative and service positions. Such an individual also should have received recognition for distinguished accomplishments in his or her field of administration. The following criteria will be used in determining the selection of a Distinguished Service Professor:

     a.  Accomplishments bringing great credit to UAB.
     b.  Unstinting dedication to standards of excellence in all endeavors.
     c.  Exemplary character and integrity reflecting great honor upon UAB.
     d.  Noteworthy value to UAB in an administrative or service capacity.
     e.  The academic rank of Professor or Librarian.
     f.  Numerous achievements and peer recognition in UAB service roles.
     g.  Recognition for service achievements beyond UAB boundaries.

Procedures for Appointing Individuals to the Rank of Distinguished Service Professor

     a.  Any member of the UAB community may nominate to the Provost an individual for appointment.
     b.  The Provost shall seek the advice of a committee of five members, appointed by the Provost, consisting of four senior faculty members not holding administrative appointment above that of a department chair, and an individual currently holding the rank of Distinguished Service Professor, if available, who will serve as chair.  Affirmative approval of at least three committee members is required for the Provost to recommend the candidate to the President.
     c.  If the Provost's decision is favorable, the Provost shall then recommend the appointment to the President.
     d.  If the President's decision is favorable, the President shall then recommend the appointment to the Board of Trustees.

   

Note:

It is vital that this procedure be conducted in such a way that, when the decision is made not to appoint someone to this rank, there is no awkward sense of being turned down. Being appointed Distinguished Service Professor should be regarded as a signal honor and not merely as the next step after administrative service.

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2.8.3 University Professor

Board Rule 508 (“Establishment of Academic Chairs, Professorships, and Endowed Lectureships and the Designation of Holders of Academic Chairs and Professorships”) specifies that the rank of University Professor is a campus-wide appointment primarily in a specific discipline; is to be recommended to the Board of Trustees by the appropriate President and the Chancellor; is to bestow on an individual an academic rank which transcends departmental and disciplinary lines; is to allow each designated individual the greatest latitude in teaching, writing, and scholarly research, and is to give such an individual with broad expertise a UAB-wide platform. The following criteria will be used in the selection of an individual to be designated University Professor

     a.  Scholarly achievement and intellectual maturity.
     b.  Dedication to the highest standards of professional excellence.
     c.  Numerous achievements and extensive peer recognition in the individual's chosen professional field.
     d.  Academic competence to enable him/her to undertake cross-departmental, cross-disciplinary activities in research and teaching, and UAB and community service.
     e.  Exemplary character and integrity reflecting great credit upon UAB.

Procedures for Appointing Individuals to the Rank of University Professor

     a.  Any member of the UAB community may nominate to the Provost an individual for appointment.
     b.  The Provost shall seek the advice of a committee of five members, appointed by the Provost, consisting of four senior faculty members not holding administrative appointments, representing the breadth of academic programs, and an individual currently holding the rank of University Professor, if available, who will serve as chair.  Affirmative approval of at least three committee members is required for the Provost to recommend the candidate to the President.
     c.  If the Provost's decision is favorable, the Provost shall then recommend the appointment to the President.
     d.  If the President's decision is favorable, the President shall then recommend the appointment to the Board of Trustees.
     e.  The preceding steps apply to the appointment of individuals who are already members of the UAB faculty.  In the case of someone to be brought in from the outside at this rank, the usual procedures for recruitment and appointment to the rank of Professor will be followed, after which the procedure described in Steps (a) through (d) will be followed.

    Notes:

         a.  It is vital that this procedure be conducted in such a way that, when the decision is made not to appoint someone to this rank, there is no awkward sense of being turned down.  Being appointed University Professor should continue to be regarded as a signal honor and not merely a "next step" above the rank of Professor.
         b.  Where appropriate, individuals with the rank of University Professor should be provided special financial support for their research and professional activities.
         c.  The primary difference between Distinguished Professor and University Professor is that Distinguished Professor recognizes achievement in a single field; whereas, University Professor is the appropriate designation for individuals whose work is more interdisciplinary in nature.
         d.  Individuals holding this rank should be allowed the greatest latitude in apportioning their time between teaching, writing, and scholarly research.

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      2.8.4 Academic Chairs, Professorships, and Endowed Lectureships

      All academic chairs, professorships, and endowed lectureships must be established by actions of the Board of Trustees, and appointments to fill them likewise shall be made by the Board of Trustees only after recommendation of the President and the Chancellor. Such appointments are prestigious appointments not only to recognize the conditions of the endowments, gifts, or other funding sources but also to reflect honor on the individual so designated. Procedures for the selection of academic chairs, professorships, and endowed lectureships may be established by each campus, but must be approved by the Board of Trustees.

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      2.8.5 Emeritus Faculty

      After ten or more years of service with The University of Alabama System, or with less service upon having made an exceptional contribution to UAB or the System, a faculty member may be considered for appointment to emeritus status.
                                      

      An emeritus appointment to a faculty rank may become effective only after the faculty member retires or no longer holds the full-time position.  An academic administrative emeritus appointment, such as Dean Emeritus, may be conferred at such time that the faculty member resigns from that academic administrative appointment, even though the faculty member may continue to hold a full-time faculty position at UAB until the time of retirement.

      An appointment to emeritus status should be initiated at the departmental level with preparation of the UAB Agenda Item Recommendation Form. Accompanied by the faculty member’s curriculum vitae, Board resolution and a cover memorandum delineating justification for the appointment, the form should be sent through the offices of the appropriate dean(s), library director, and Provost, and forwarded to the President. When the appointment has been approved by the President, the form will be forwarded to the Office of Human Resources, and notification will be sent to the faculty member.  The appropriate personnel documents should be processed by the department according to university and Human Resources guidelines.  Appointment to emeritus status is campus-specific.  Current practice is for emeritus status to be approved by the Chancellor and the Board of Trustees.

      Certain privileges will be inherent in emeritus faculty status. An identification card will be furnished to the person for use in the libraries, recreation center, bookstore, and campus dining facilities, and a guest-parking permit (annually renewable) also will be made available. Any faculty fees and charges for use of these facilities shall be applied to emeritus faculty.  At the discretion of the appropriate dean or library director and/or department chair, laboratory or office space may be assigned, if such is available.

      Re-employment of retired faculty members is allowed within the limits set by the UAB “Policy Concerning the Re-employment of UAB Retirees.”