College, University Faculty Clashes With Board of Regents President

Members of the Connecticut State Colleges & Universities system met with the Board of Regents president Thursday to explain why 92 percent of the faculty has no confidence in him.

It was a war of words between the Faculty Advisory Committee FAC and Board of Regents president Gregory Gray after a recent vote of "no confidence" was taken at most of the CSCU campuses against Gray’s leadership.

"All 436 votes have been cast in favor of a 'no confidence' resolution on some type. Only 40 votes have been cast against the resolution," said Tunxis Community College professor and Faculty Advisory Committee chairman Bob Brown.

The concerns arose months ago, when faculty members asked their advice be used in the development of Transform 2020, the system’s new higher-learning initiative.

"I think it was, more than anything, an effort to be part of the process," said Rachel Siporin, a professor at Central Connecticut State University.

She was one of about two dozen teachers wearing white shirts that read, 'Whereas… Be It Resolved' in support of the no-confidence vote Thursday.

The FAC recommended scrapping the Transform 2020 plan, but Gray said he wants to collaborate.

"It’s going to be the prerogative of the presidents to start seriously looking at this and how these initiatives do, appropriately fit into their campus strategic plans," said Gray.

Gray told the board in moving forward, he plans to arrange meetings with university stake holders and campus presidents.

Siporin wasn’t impressed with the response.

"They played lip service to establishing more dialogue, but they did not engage in really listening," she said.

Siporin said she was disappointed the Board of Regents did not ask faculty who attended the meeting to express their thoughts on the situation.

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