Culture and Governance - Year 3 Report

Advances toward shared governance; increased transparency; reorganizations to align mission, resources and accountability; and enhanced diversity on campus continued in Year 3.

Goal C1

From a baseline of 2011, our faculty will increasingly reflect greater diversity from multiple perspectives, including ethnicity and gender.


Modest progress was made in efforts to increase faculty diversity. From AY 13-14 to AY 14-15, the percentage of tenured women faculty decreased by 2 percent (a decrease of one faculty member), while the percentage of tenure-track women faculty increased from 26 percent to 31 percent (an increase of three faculty members) and full-time non-tenure track women faculty increased from 21 percent to 22 percent (an increase of seven faculty members).In response to the findings of the Climate Study conducted in Year 2 under the NSF ADVANCE grant, a number of programs have been initiated and/or supported by ADVANCE Stevens with a focus in three areas: Academic Culture, Leadership Development, and Hiring and Faculty Advancement. These initiatives introduce thought leadership and best practices across these areas to Stevens faculty members and administrators and engage them in critical discussion, action planning, and professional development to enhance the culture for all faculty at Stevens.Highlights of ADVANCE initiatives in Year 3 include: “Improving Collective Decision Making and Performance: Why Diversity Matters,” by Dr. Scott Page; Ask the Provost and Ask the Dean discussions to improve communication between academic leadership and faculty members; and a Family Friendly Benefits Survey that revealed that faculty are unaware of a significant number of benefits and policies that Stevens offers.

Year 4: Continue programming under the NSF ADVANCE grant.

Goal C2

Stevens will have identified the metrics by which we identify “exemplary faculty members.”


A proposal was submitted and adopted at the December 2014 Board of Trustees meeting to designate “University Professors,” along with the requirements, role, and methods to recognize such exemplary faculty members.

Year 4: Broadly communicate the policy within the Stevens community. Establish a call for nominations schedule.

Goal C3

A study of the organizational structure at Stevens will be completed to ensure clarity with regard to accountability, alignment with mission and enhanced effectiveness and efficiency in the use of resources.


Effectiveness and efficiency initiatives continued in Year 3 throughout the university including new leadership at the Cabinet level with the addition of a new Chief Financial Officer, Vice President for Finance and Treasurer; additional reorganizations and new appointments within administrative and academic divisions; and new approaches to increase the ROI of university resources for greater impact. Representative examples of effectiveness and efficiency initiatives taking place within and among the major academic and administrative units at Stevens include: a merger of the Co-op and Career Services units to form the Stevens Career Center; a reorganization of the Office of Innovation and Entrepreneurship within the Office of the Vice Provost for Research; the implementation of the Workday Human Capital Management system and the Virtual Learning Environment; selection of a new student dining and catering vendor; a strategic approach to financial aid, resulting in the reduction of the tuition discount rate; and a revised sick leave and disability policy. Monitoring of key financial metrics, and in-depth analyses of academic expenditures based on credits and other metrics, academic space needs, and purchasing trends have continued in Year 3, resulting in findings that have improved effectiveness and efficiency. A new budgeting process was launched with the goal of increasing the strategic allocation or reallocation of financial resources to key institutional priorities. Annual performance objectives continue to be set for all members of the Cabinet, Vice Provosts, Deans and their direct reports, specifying ambitious progress targets and, where applicable, quantitative metrics.

Year 4: Effectiveness and efficiency priorities in Year 4 include continued financial analysis and reforms to ensure strategic reallocation of university resources to the highest priority needs; implementation of a new budgeting process; implementation of recommendations of Unit Review Committees for units with high dissatisfaction ratings; and implementation of a revised policy on course overloads.

Goal C4

A faculty leadership development program will be established.


The Center for Faculty Advancement has developed and launched the Faculty Leadership Development Program. The program is comprised of in-house courses and workshops, on-line seminars, and off-campus leadership learning opportunities delivered by respected external subject matter experts. Off-campus learning opportunities are organized in three tracks:

  • Research Enterprise: faculty who lead a group of researchers and/or a research center

  • Academic Enterprise: faculty who lead programs, departments or schools

  • Administration: faculty who lead administrative units within the university

Since the launch of this program, four workshops were held on-campus with 125 faculty members participating.

Year 4: Develop review and assessment processes to track participation, participant satisfaction, and impact.

Goal C5

Stevens will complete an university-wide review of the academic organization with respect to interdisciplinary educational programs and research.


Limited progress on the comprehensive review of interdisciplinary programs has been made. However, the university’s quest for appropriate interdisciplinary programs has resulted in the establishment of two interdisciplinary units: The Financial Systems Center (FSC), and the Innovation, Design and Entrepreneurship at Stevens (IDEaS) initiative.

Year 4: During year 4, the FSC and IDEaS will be assessed to collect lessons-learned.

Goal C6

An examination of all academic programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels will be completed by Fall 2013 to ensure strategic and fiscal alignment.


Review templates and key metrics and ratios have been developed and reviewed with the academic Deans. Data is being refreshed from AY 13-14 to AY 14-15.

Year 4: Complete the refresh of templates with the most current academic period (AY 14-15); complete reviews at each school level with the Deans, then with each department/program leader.

Goal C7

All salaries (faculty at all levels and disciplines, administrative and staff positions) at Stevens will be benchmarked against an appropriate peer group to ensure quality and ability to attract the very best talent.


A process has been established to engage an external consultant to benchmark executive salaries every two years and to benchmark faculty salaries every four years against a core peer group. This process has been completed twice for executive salaries and once for faculty salaries. Results were reviewed and approved by the Board of Trustees in December 2014. Faculty and staff salaries are recorded in the Workday Human Capital Management system, which facilitates internal peer group comparisons and analyses by the Division of Human Resources in future years.

Year 4: Peer group comparisons for faculty and different levels of administrative and other staff positions will be completed with the assistance of an external consultant by December 2016. Executive salaries will continue to be independently reviewed and evaluated annually by an external consultant. Results will be presented to the Board of Trustees for review and approval in December 2016.