A downloadable PDF version of the handbook is available at College Employee Handbook.

II. Faculty Organization

A. Membership. The President of the College, the Vice President for Academic Affairs and the Associate Provosts, and all full-time officers of instruction are members of the Faculty of Rhodes College. A part-time officer of instruction who has been appointed at one-half time or more for at least three years may, at his or her request, be extended the privileges and responsibilities of a member of the Faculty. The service responsibilities of such members of the Faculty will be in rough proportion to the fraction of full-time that they serve.

The designation, officer of instruction, includes all persons within the institution appointed with academic rank except instructors in physical education and certain instructors in applied music. The ranks are: Instructor, Assistant Professor, Associate Professor, and Professor and any of these named ranks when modified by the terms—Adjunct, Visiting, Distinguished, or Distinguished Service.

B. Responsibilities. Articles VII and VIII of the College Bylaws describe the responsibilities of the Faculty in academic matters.

The Faculty’s concern extends to areas beyond the strictly academic, as they are concerned with the whole of student and community life. Thus it is proper for Faculty, individually and collectively, to express their views and give advice privately to the Vice President for Academic Affairs, the other representatives of Academic Affairs, the President, and other administrative officers on nonacademic matters.

In general the Faculty and the Vice President for Academic Affairs will take care to inform each other of policy discussions in a timely way so that appropriate advice can be given before action is taken.

C. Meetings. The Faculty shall meet monthly during the academic year to carry out its business. Normally these meetings will be held on the first or second Wednesday of the month at 4:15 p.m. Faculty can change or cancel a scheduled meeting by majority vote. Scheduled meetings of the Faculty occur in August (the opening meeting), September, October, November, December, January, February, March, April, and May. The Faculty elects the Presiding Officer in May for the next academic year. Absences from meetings of the Faculty may be excused by the Vice President for Academic Affairs if requests and explanations are presented to the Secretary of the Faculty in advance of the meeting or immediately afterwards if there are extenuating circumstances. 

There are in addition three meetings of the Faculty each year which are designated formal academic occasions. These are:

  1. The Opening (Founders) Convocation in the fall semester
  2. The Awards Convocation in the spring semester
  3. The Commencement Exercises at graduation

Additional Special Convocations may be called by the President. Attendance and academic regalia are required at each of these formal academic occasions. Absences may be excused if requests and explanations are presented to the Vice President for Academic Affairs in advance of the formal academic occasion.

The Faculty may be called into special session by the President or upon the request of one-fourth of the members of the Faculty. Special sessions of the Faculty shall be designated “for discussion” or “for action.” In special sessions for action all of the rules and procedures of this “Statement of Policies and Procedures in Regard to Faculty” apply.

Members of the Faculty are required to attend regular and special meetings of the Faculty and Faculty retreats unless excused by the Vice President for Academic Affairs. Classes should not be scheduled to conflict continuously with scheduled meetings of the Faculty.

The Faculty shall elect such officers as it deems necessary to carry out its responsibilities. The Faculty Secretary is elected for a one-year term, and is responsible for keeping the minutes of Faculty meetings and such other records as the Faculty determines. A Faculty Parliamentarian is elected for a one-year term. In addition, four Faculty Marshals are appointed by the President.

More detailed rules and procedures concerning the Faculty meeting are given in Appendix A.

D. Committees. The Faculty shall have the authority to establish any standing committees it deems necessary to meet its responsibilities. Such committees derive their powers and responsibilities from the Faculty and their actions are subject to Faculty review and possible veto.

Though established by the Faculty and subject to it, such standing committees include student and administrative members when appropriate to the committee’s area of concern. The President and the Vice President for Academic Affairs shall be members, ex-officio, of all standing committees, unless the Faculty action in constituting the committee explicitly excludes these members. The The Vice President of Academic Affairs may name a representative from the Office of Academic Affairs as a liaison to the committees of the Faculty.