Departmental Committees

  1. Faculty Advisory Committee (FAC)

    The Department’s Faculty Advisory Committee is comprised of all full-time tenured or tenure-track (TT) faculty and one representative of the full-time non-tenure-track (NTT) faculty members to be selected by the FAC, plus the Department Chairperson.  The Chair of FAC normally shall determine those agenda items or, in certain instances, meetings which may be inappropriate for attendance by committee members who are not full-time TT faculty.  In all cases, NTT faculty shall neither be present for discussions of nor vote on personnel issues concerning TT faculty.  A representative (or representatives in such number as established by the College Handbook) to the College Advisory Committee (CAC) shall be elected bi-annually from the full-time tenured and tenure-track faculty.  In order for this position to rotate among eligible FAC members, this person should serve for two consecutive years, subject to possible reappointment.  The Chairperson of the Faculty Advisory Committee shall be a tenured full-time faculty member.  All FAC Committee meetings should be held separately from the general departmental meetings.

    The entire regular full-time faculty of the Department, acting on its own behalf and/or through the Faculty Advisory Committee, is the primary advisory and recommendatory body to the Departmental Chairperson on those matters central to the Department’s mission, which include but are not necessarily limited to the following:

    college-level issues including reappointment, tenure, promotion and dismissal; allocation or re-allocation of faculty positions and academic staff positions within the Department; the proposed addition, elimination or restructuring of academic units within the Department; general guidelines regarding allocation of faculty salary increases from the Dean's salary increase pool, as well as other salary adjustments when and if applicable; planning and budget priorities, including allocation of discretionary resources; selection of faculty members for college committees; professional improvement and other leaves, if and as appropriate; procedures for the establishment, review and appropriate revision of the Department Handbook; college-level issues related to the advising and retention of students; insuring that students are properly advised; insuring that instructional standards are followed; and insuring that class and other duties of faculty members are met.  It is expected that the Departmental faculty will also participate in the activities of a variety of other standing and/or ad hoc committees.  Enforcements and sanctions of this policy are spelled out in the CBA document.  This Committee also serves as the Student Grievance Committee.

  2. Ad Hoc Reappointment, Tenure and Promotion Sub-Committee

    The Department Chairperson presides over this Sub-Committee of the Faculty Advisory Committee which is composed exclusively of members of the tenured faculty.  Owing to the small size of the Department, this committee has been constituted as the Committee of the Whole, i.e., all tenured full-time members of the Department.

    All recommendations concerning reappointment, tenure and promotion are initiated in the Sub-Committee.  No member of this Sub-Committee shall be present when the Sub-Committee deliberates or votes on his or her own tenure or promotion, nor shall a member of the Sub-Committee of a lower rank deliberate or vote on the tenure or promotion of a faculty member in a higher rank or of a spouse or relative.

    This Sub-Committee requires the participation of at least four tenured faculty other than the Chair.  Whenever PAS cannot meet these requirements with PAS faculty, the PAS Chair, in consultation with the Dean, shall invite the necessary number of faculty from other departments, whose teaching specialties and prior involvements are in accordance with the teaching/research area of the faculty member being reviewed, to sit on this Sub-Committee.

  3. Curriculum Committee

    The Curriculum Committee shall be composed of all full-time TT and full-time NTT faculty. The Chair of the Curriculum Committee will be appointed by the FAC yearly and will serve as the Department’s representative to the College of Arts and Sciences Curriculum Committee. Upon vote of the faculty, a number of graduate assistants and Department’s majors and minors may be selected to become members of this Committee.  The Curriculum Committee is the primary advisory and recommendatory body to the Departmental Chairperson on those academic matters which are central to the Department’s mission. These matters include but are not necessarily limited to the following: 

    • long-range academic planning for the Department; overall curricular planning and policies;
    • minimizing proliferation and duplication of courses;
    • sequencing of course offerings; maximizing course variety through Special Topics and workshop offerings;
    • coordination of curricular changes;
    • reviewing for approval proposed new courses or altered academic programs within the Department;
    • recommending to the Chairperson action on all matters involving the Department’s curriculum and educational objectives as reflected by the curriculum.


  4. Program Continuity Committee (also referred to as Unit Meetings)

    In order to assure the holistic coordination and continuity of Department programs, the Program Continuity Committee meets regularly and is composed of the Chair or the Assistant to the Chairperson, the Directors of the Center of Pan-African Culture, Institute for African American Affairs, the African Community Theatre and Communication Skills and Arts. Membership may also include the Curator of the Uumbaji Gallery. This committee coordinates all DPAS programming and each unit member provides regular updates outlining each division’s planned activities for the month/semester/year and highlights where each or selected DPAS divisions can collaborate in the holistic planning and delivery of activities

  5. Honors and Awards Sub-Committee

    The PAS Honors and Awards Sub-Committee, selected annually from the faculty, staff and students by the Chairperson of the Curriculum Committee, shall consist of a Chair and two or three other members.  It shall be the responsibility of this Committee to compile during Spring Semester a list of eligible candidates to receive any of the four department awards based on established criteria: GPA, class standing, performance in PAS courses and significance of contribution in the respective award categories.  Induction into Alpha Kappa Mu, a National Scholastic Honor Society, is based on criteria established by the National Office and the selection process is determined by the advisor and the chapter president.  Awards include

    1. Alpha Kappa Mu National Scholastic Honor Society
    2. The Mary McLeod Bethune Award for Scholarship
    3. The Fela Sowande Award for Creativity
    4. The W. E. B. DuBois Award for Service
    5. The Hulda Smith-Graham Freshman Award

    The Sub-Committee supervises the preparation of the appropriate documents as well as the award certificates to be presented.

    The DPAS Honors and Awards Sub-Committee completes the arrangements necessary for presenting awards to recipients of the Hulda Smith-Graham Freshman Award and the initiates in Alpha Kappa Mu. Each year a special Alpha Kappa Mu initiation ceremony and Hulda Smith-Graham Award presentation is held in cooperation with Black United Students’ Ebony Achievement Awards Ceremony.  (See also Section VII, L, 1.)

  6. Black Experience Committee

    The Black Experience Committee is the primary advisory and recommendatory body to the Departmental Chairperson on matters dealing with the Black Experience courses. This Committee works very closely with the Curriculum Committee in making long- range academic decisions for the Black Experience courses, including selection of texts and other matters related to these courses.  Members of this committee will be chosen from both tenured (tenure-track) and non-tenure track faculty who teach the Black Experience courses.  The chair will be a tenured or tenure-track faculty member and will be appointed by FAC annually.

  7. Handbook Oversight Committee

    The Handbook Oversight Committee is the primary advisory and recommendatory body to the Departmental Chairperson on matters dealing with the interpretation and implementation of the content of the Handbook.  Members of this committee will make sure that the content and intent are adhered to.  Members of this committee will be chosen by the FAC from tenured, tenure-track and non-tenure track faculty. A tenured or tenure-track faculty, will serve as chair and will be appointed by FAC annually.