Authority: Academic Affairs and Enrollment Management
Date Enacted or Revised: Revised January 16, 2013; December 14, 2015; August 2016; October 2017
The McNeese State University Foundation provides endowed professorships according to university, Foundation, and Board of Regents guidelines. Endowments for professorships consist of private donations matched with State funds awarded by the Board of Regents. Endowed professorships are available to eligible faculty on a competitive basis providing funding is available and approved by the MSU Foundation. Endowed Professorships may be designated for a specific purpose or college or department or discipline in accordance with the objectives of the donation as well as Board of Regents and Foundation criteria.
Use of Endowed Professorship funds support the McNeese State University Mission by: 1) enhancing teaching and applied research activity, 2) supporting undergraduate research opportunities, 3) sustaining the quality of academic programs through faculty and program development.
Eligibility for Endowed Professorship
Applicants must be full-time faculty members at McNeese with a rank of assistant professor or higher unless special undergraduate or applied research or other educational initiatives call for a broader applicant pool to include instructors. Deans, vice presidents, and the President are not eligible. Faculty members, including department heads, may apply for professorships designated for their respective disciplines, departments, or colleges. First-time full-time faculty are eligible to apply; continuing full-time faculty must be in good standing and must have achieved satisfactory ratings in all areas of the previous Annual Performance Report.
After the Foundation approves the status of endowed professorship funding, the provost informs college deans to begin the selection process. The dean may appoint a committee comprised of faculty or appropriate personnel to receive proposals and make recommendations for recipients. In cases where endowed professorships have specific designations, the dean or provost may appoint the endowed professor to support the objectives of the endowment and the University mission. The vice president for academic affairs and enrollment management, with approval of the vice president for university advancement, may designate professorships for specific initiatives provided the donor’s objectives are met.
Note: Chairpersons for Endowed Professorship committees should not hold meetings which conflict with Faculty Senate meetings (the first Wednesday of the month from 3:10 to 5:00 p.m.). In addition, prior to committee meetings to select recipients, Endowed Professorship Committee Chairs should document the process for selecting recipients and provide the documentation to the dean.
Endowed Professorship Proposal and Length of Term
Endowed professorship appointments are for one to three years. A proposal describing the applicant’s planned activities must be submitted to the committee or dean by the designated date announced each year. The proposal must have a title and include goals and objectives that support the university mission and are appropriate for the department in which the professor resides, e.g., grant funding, publications, applied research, undergraduate research, teaching, industrial ties, and other academic and/or economic development activities. Multi-year awarding of professorships remains contingent on available funds for each year of the award.
Selection of Endowed Professorship Recipients
Each committee receives and reviews proposals and makes recommendations to the dean. The dean ensures faculty criteria are met and forwards final recommendations to the provost for appointment. The provost makes the appointment for specifically designated professorships.
If selection committees determine that there are no qualified applicants, the dean and provost may appoint an eligible faculty member to fulfill the objectives of the endowment.
Endowed professorships are awarded for a one to three year term. Recipients may reapply for professorships when funding is available, provided all reporting requirements are met, the proposal objectives for previous awards are met, and the faculty remains in good standing.
Endowed Professorship Reporting Requirements and Use of Funds
Endowed professorship funds may be used by faculty 1) to enhance teaching and applied research activity, 2) to support undergraduate research opportunities, 3) to enhance the quality of academic programs and faculty development. Endowed professorship funds may not be designated for the general discretionary use of departments, colleges, or the campus.
Implementation of the Award
The following occurs for the implementation of the award:
- The recipient creates a projected budget for use of the funds.
- The budget is submitted to the college dean for approval.
- Once approved by the dean, the budget is submitted to the Office of Academic Affairs and Enrollment Management for final approval.
- An expense account is established for the endowed professor and funds are placed in the account for use by the endowed professor; a letter of appointment is sent to the recipient with all pertinent account and reporting information.
- Funds must be expended in accordance with State and University guidelines.
- The endowed professor submits annual written documentation and appropriate evidence of scholarly activity or proposal objectives along with expenditures completed to the college dean for review.
- The dean forwards approved reports to the Office of Academic Affairs and Enrollment Management.
- Final reports are reviewed by the vice president for academic affairs and enrollment management and submitted to the Office of University Advancement and the Board of Regents for review. Note: A review team may be appointed by the vice president for academic affairs and enrollment management to evaluate progress of the recipient’s activities based on the goals and objectives of the professorship.
- Funds must be expended during the duration of the professorship and may not be held for future expenses not related to the goals of the professorship.
- Residual funds may be utilized for general faculty development that supports the mission of the university. Endowed professorship recipients who leave the university or are reassigned duties do not receive endowed professorship funds remaining at the time of departure or reassignment.
- Endowed Professors should participate in donor recognition activities. The MSU Foundation provides information regarding donor recognition activities.
Level of Financial Support
The amount of funding per endowed professorship each year is determined by the MSU Foundation Board of Directors according to investment performance and other fiscal factors.
Termination of Endowed Professorship
The University reserves the right to terminate the award if 1) the recipient’s actions are not appropriate as a representative of the University; or 2) the recipient fails to fulfill the obligations of the professorship or fails to fulfill obligations in a timely manner; or 3) the recipient suffers an incapacitating illness extending beyond one year; or 4) the recipient does not continue as a full-time faculty member at McNeese. The dean of the appropriate college will report cases involving possible termination to the vice president for academic affairs and enrollment management and a recommendation will be made to the President for final action. Any vacancy created by a termination will remain until the following year and any unused money will be allocated for faculty development supporting the objectives of the endowment.
This policy is distributed via Academic Advisory Council, Senior Staff, and the University Policy page.