Chapter 5: Appointments

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5.G Appointments: Other Considerations

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5.G.1 Conflict of Commitment in Faculty Appointments

A faculty member who accepts a tenure track or tenured position at the University of Michigan must resign from any tenure track or tenured position held at another institution of higher education prior to the start date of the U-M appointment(s). Exceptions to this policy must be approved by the dean and by the provost and executive vice president for academic affairs.

5.G.2 Dual Career Program

Many faculty members have partners who are accomplished professionals in their own right. Therefore, the University’s ability to recruit and retain faculty often hinges on dual career partners’ ability to find suitable employment or other career opportunities. In response, the University created the Dual Career Program, a collaborative effort that involves academic departments and programs, the school and college deans’ offices, and the Office of the Provost. The program provides assistance to dual career partners of tenure-track and tenured faculty members. For more information about the program, faculty members should contact the appropriate department chair, program director, or dean, or see the Office of the Provost dual career web page.

In addition, the College of Engineering, the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts, and the Medical School have created school/college dual career offices.

The staff for these school/college programs and the dual career staff in the Office of the Provost work collaboratively.

5.G.3 Employment Oath

Faculty at the University of Michigan, by virtue of being employees of the State of Michigan, are required by law to subscribe to the following constitutional oath of office before beginning work: “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support the Constitution of the United States of America and the Constitution of the State of Michigan, and that I will discharge the duties of my position according to the best of my ability.” (SPG 201.17)

5.G.4 Favoritism/Nepotism

At the University there shall be neither favoritism toward nor discrimination against any individual in appointment, promotion, wages, hours, or other conditions of employment based upon that individual’s being a “relative” of or having a close personal relationship or external business relationship to another person employed by the University, hereafter in this section referred to “relative” (SPG 201.23). If a faculty or staff member is to be assigned to a position that is under the supervision or control of a relative who has or may have a direct effect on the individual’s progress or performance, or an individual is to be assigned to a position with the same immediate supervisor as a relative, a management plan must be devised and approved by the head of the unit (e.g., dean or director) and that of the unit’s senior Human Resources officer. A management plan is also required when an individual already assigned to a position becomes a “relative” or a supervisor, subordinate, or someone who works for the same immediate supervisor.

For the purposes of this rule, the term “relative,” when used with regard to family members is defined as a staff member’s spouse or partner, daughter or son, grandparent, brother or sister, grandchild, aunt or uncle, niece or nephew (or the spouse of any of these) of either the staff member or the staff member’s spouse, or any other related person who is part of the staff member’s household.

Relationship to a staff member constitutes neither an advantage nor a deterrent to appointment by the University. It is only required that the individual meet and fulfill the standards appropriate to a University appointment. See SPG 201.23, which includes procedures and handbook section 9.G, “Conflicts of Interest and Conflicts of Commitment.”

5.G.5 Fitness for Duty

A Fitness for Duty policy was adopted to help assure the safety and health of individuals in the University community and others with whom they come in contact while performing their duties; to establish procedures by which the University can evaluate an employee’s ability to safely and competently perform his or her duties when a health or safety problem arises; and to comply with the Federal Drug Free Workplace Act. Safety is the primary objective of this policy. Therefore, a faculty or staff member may be asked to have a fitness for duty evaluation only if it is determined that his or her behavior poses an imminent and serious safety threat to self or others. The policy spells out the procedures that must be followed when an individual is asked to have an evaluation. For additional information, see SPG 201.15.

5.G.6 International Faculty

The University provides assistance in obtaining Temporary Work Visas (H-1) for international instructional faculty and will consult on procedures for obtaining permanent residency status. Hiring units are urged to contact the International Center before making an offer of employment to a non-U.S. citizen, but potential employees may also contact the International Center directly to discuss their current visa status and options that are available to them. (SPG 402.01) The International Center charges the unit a flat fee for processing H-1B and permanent resident visas. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services also charges a fee, which is typically paid by the individual.

It is important to address visa issues promptly in order to avoid situations where individuals cannot secure necessary immigration documents in time to teach, conduct research, or fulfill other responsibilities because immigration status does not permit employment. For more information, see the Center’s website. The International Center has offices on both central campus and north campus, and can be contacted at [email protected].

The University also has a large number of international students (F-1 and J-1 visas) and exchange visitors (J-1 visas), many of whom may be employed under certain conditions. For information about immigration status and employment eligibility of international students and visitors, contact the International Center main number and ask to speak to an international student and scholar advisor. See also handbook section 21.J “International Center.”