Faculty Senate President’s Message – “The Voice of the Faculty”
As per the Faculty Senate constitution and by-laws, the Senate acts as “the sole representative body of the faculty” and serves as “the voice of the faculty”. The Senators serve as advisors to the administration in insuring the success of the University’s mission in teaching, research and service.
Needless to say, the Faculty Senate takes this charge very seriously.
The concept of shared governance at the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) is extremely important. It means that “good citizenship,” an important component of achieving success at MUSC and tenure, is not just defined as carrying out the agenda of University administration, but rather being an active participant in creating and shaping that agenda.
The MUSC faculty is a large body of over a thousand intelligent, hard-working, insightful, and caring men and women, playing important roles as the nation’s best teachers, researchers, clinicians and administrators. We have diverse educational, ethnic and cultural backgrounds. Many of these individuals play important leadership roles internationally. Ignoring the combined intellectual, ethical, experiential, and operational power of such a group would be a crime. Using that power is the key to achieving our goal of top ranking in the nation.
As such, no matter the perceived time pressure, strategic planning and policy-making at our institution should never overlook the step of informing, seeking reaction and input from, and gathering support from its membership, the key players in carrying out the action plan of any new policy or mission.
As MUSC faculty, we are fortunate to be part of this shared governance – it needs to be appreciated, respected, and at times, defended. The pressures of running a medical university are great. At times, the MUSC and MUHA (Medical University Hospital Authority) administration (and that of its key affiliates like MUSC Physicians (previously known as the UMA)), may rarely stray from the ideal level of involvement of the faculty body; and the policy-setting processes may, at times, need to be improved. It is the job of the Senate and the faculty it represents, to identify those procedural and content areas that need improvement, and to be part of the solution in improving them.
The non-compete agreement and MUSC oversight over MUSC Physicians, the peer-review process, post-tenure review, space allocation/ relocation, and conflict of interest determination are among the topics of interest this year.
I pledge to you that the Faculty Senate, and its executive, standing and ad hoc committees, will do their very best this coming year to carry out this mission, with your guidance and assistance.
I travelled thousands of miles to come be a part of MUSC almost a decade ago, and so have many of you. MUSC is a great institution that is worth your investment, and I need your involvement. Please be creative in how you can help change what’s possible at MUSC, in addition to changing what’s possible in health care.
Feel free to contact me at any time with any questions you have, any issues that have arisen with which the Faculty Senate may be able to assist, and with any specific ideas you have regarding how you can help.
Joseph Romagnuolo, MD
Faculty Senate President (2012-13)