Provost announces Imagine PNW membership

The memberships of the two Imagine PNW task forces were announced on Sept. 21 by Ralph Mueller, vice chancellor for Academic Affairs and Provost.

The two task forces, the academic programs and support functions task forces, each consist of 15 members, with PNW faculty making up the entirety of the academic programs task force and a combination of PNW faculty and staff comprising the support function task force. The 30 members were chosen out of 123 nominations, according to Mueller.

Mueller said in the statement that the membership was determined following consultation with senior administration and contact with “stakeholder groups” on campus.

The membership announcement was made in the wake of disagreements between Faculty Senate members and senior administration during the Sept. 14 Faculty Senate meeting. The disagreements arose when Faculty Senate leadership asked for input on the membership process, as the membership was to be solely decided by Mueller and Stephen Turner, vice chancellor for Finance and Administration.

Faculty Senate leadership and senior administration reached a compromise following the disagreements, which allowed David Detmer, Faculty Senate chair, and Tony Elmendorf, Faculty Senate vice chair, to view the list of individuals chosen and provide input prior to the membership announcement. Detmer and Elmendorf, in a joint statement to The Pioneer, said they viewed the list of members for the academic programs task force on Sept. 18, three days prior to the announcement.

Detmer and Elmendorf continued that they had “mixed feelings” about providing input as they were “unable to see the full list of nominees to the Task Force, which severely limited the scope of any advice we could give.”

“We had no objection to anyone on the list of members, but our approval was qualified by the fact that we had no alternative list of names to consult,” the statement read. “It is our opinion that this process did not meet the requirements for shared governance, which would mean significant, meaningful input from the Senate as an organization about the objectives and procedures of an initiative that will have a significant impact on faculty, as well as on the well-being of the University as a whole.”

Members of the task forces are tasked with analyzing and ranking PNW’s 300 academic and support programs. These rankings will play a role in the future funding of the programs.

The task forces will begin supplying the various programs with templates that will be used for analysis and ranking on Nov. 9, according to Imagine PNW documents.


The Imagine PNW task forces will be working through the end of the year and in 2019.