By-Laws of the Center for Jewish Studies
at University of Florida
Preamble: The academic unit governed by these by-laws is the University of Florida Center for Jewish Studies. The Program is housed in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences but may include faculty, academic professionals, staff and students from a variety of UF colleges.
I Mission: The purpose of the Center for Jewish Studies is to promote an awareness of the richness and diversity of Jewish cultures, languages, history, religion, and creative expression among students of all ethnic and religious backgrounds. A central means of accomplishing this goal is through developing and expanding a Jewish Studies curriculum including core courses as well as courses in other appropriate departments and programs. The Center is committed to furthering the University’s mission to provide a world-class education within a public institution. Doing so requires an intellectually engaged and productive faculty with a strong commitment to research and publication.
II Relation to College, University, and Board of Trustees
If any policy or procedure in these Bylaws conflicts with policies or procedures of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, the Academic Policies and Procedures Manual, or the University of Florida Board of Trustees, the policy or procedure of the latter three shall take precedence. All policies or procedures not in conflict shall remain in force.
III Membership and Organization
Unit Membership: There are two categories of faculty participants in the Center for Jewish Studies:
1. Unit Membership:
1) Core Faculty: Faculty holding single or joint appointments in JST. A tenure-track/tenured faculty member at UF with significant research and/or university teaching interests in Jewish Studies. New core faculty will be approved by a vote of the Center�s faculty. Under normal circumstances, core faculty teach at least one JST course per annum. This requirement may be waived at the recommendation of the Director in consultation with the Advisory Committee.
2) Affiliate Faculty: a) tenure-track/tenured faculty member with a secondary research and/or university teaching interest in Jewish Studies; b) a lecturer or adjunct faculty member with a significant research and/or university teaching interests in Jewish Studies. New affiliates will be approved by a vote of the Advisory Committee and then invited to join. Potential core and affiliate faculty may apply for consideration at the beginning of each semester.
2. Organization: The organizational structure of the Center for Jewish Studies consists of its core and affiliate members, a Director, a Grass Chair in Jewish Studies, a Braman Chair in Holocaust Studies (future Chairs in Jewish Studies will be added as necessary), an Advisory Committee, standing committees, ad hoc committees, and staff.
3. Responsibility and Authority of the Members:
The Center for Jewish Studies looks to its core and affiliate members for support of its many activities through their active involvement and participation in events and meetings. It is the responsibility of both core and affiliate faculty members to contribute to the functions of the Center at the curricular, programmatic, and/or administrative levels.
1. Active membership and participation in Center events and meetings will be a deciding factor determining access to Center resources.
D. Unit Meetings: The Center for Jewish Studies members will meet at least once per semester. Additional meetings will be called if five or a majority of core/affiliate faculty (whichever is smaller) so request in writing. Regular attendance at and participation in unit meetings is expected of all active faculty members.
E. Governance: Issues requiring formal votes such as personnel matters.
1. A quorum will consist of one-half of the active (not on leave) core faculty.
2. A faculty member will be appointed by the Director to record minutes. The Director will arrange for distribution of the minutes to each affiliate member five (5) working days before the next meeting for final approval whenever possible.
IV: Election, Responsibilities, and Authority of the Director:
1. The Director shall be appointed by the Dean of CLAS with the concurrence of the Provost.
2. The Dean shall appoint a search committee composed of core and affiliate members to make a recommendation for the Director. At least half of the search committee must be elected by the core membership.
3. Among the qualifications to be considered in the selection of the Director will be: a) potential effectiveness in building and administering the Center for Jewish Studies in terms of its objectives; b) distinguished scholarly record; c) ability and willingness to represent the Center for Jewish Studies effectively; and d) administrative experience or apparent potential; e) experience in grant writing and/or fund raising; f) upon assuming the position, the Director must be a tenured faculty member at UF.
4. The Director will normally serve a term up to five years with annual reappointments being made by the Dean. The Director’s term may be extended, however, at the discretion of the Dean in consultation with core and affiliate members. The Dean may appoint a review committee to assist in considering reappointment.
5. The Dean of CLAS will undertake an annual evaluation of the Director, the results of which will be shared with the Director.
6. The Director shall assume the primary responsibility for administering the Center for Jewish Studies, curriculum, budget, personnel, conferences, and community programming subject to the limitations specified elsewhere in the bylaws and in College and University rules and regulations. The Director reports directly to the Dean.
V. Endowed Professorships:
a. Searches for budgeted Jewish Studies positions will be carried out under the auspices of the Center for Jewish Studies. At least half of the search committee for Jewish Studies positions shall be Jewish Studies core or affiliated members of the faculty.
b. Recommendations about reappointments are made to the Dean and Director by an ad hoc committee. The committee consists of 3 tenured affiliates elected by affiliates.
1. This input will help determine whether the discretionary use of the endowment funds has served to enhance Jewish Studies at UF through the caliber of research and productivity and/or the public programs generated by the funds. Evaluation of all chairs should be done annually.
2. This procedure presupposes that other steps have been taken. First, the holder of the chair will submit to the Director of the Center for Jewish Studies a written report (by April 1) outlining the use of the funds in the preceding year. The Director will share this report with an elected ad hoc committee (consisting of 3 tenured affiliates elected by affiliates). This Ad hoc committee will be charged with preparing and submitting through the Director an annual report to the dean on the expenditure of the funds and the resulting enhancements to the Center for Jewish Studies. The results of the evaluation will be shared with the holder of the chair.
For assessing and voting on the suitability of joint-appointed JST faculty for tenure and promotion JST abides by the stated tenure and promotion requirements of the candidate�s tenure home.
There shall be an Advisory Committee, standing committees, and ad hoc committees. Ordinarily, ad hoc committees will be appointed by the Director as needs warrant and shall consist of at least three members. Each committee shall advise the Director with respect to its charge.
1) The Advisory Committee will consist of a minimum of 3 members; two will be elected each year while the third will be appointed. Ordinarily, a quorum shall be constituted by a simple majority of the Advisory Committee. The Director of the Center for Jewish Studies will be the Chair of the Advisory Committee. The Advisory Committee shall be responsible for periodically reviewing all matters relating to the Program. The Advisory Committee will meet as needed.
The Advisory Committee�s specific duties include:
a. To review and evaluate the activities of the Director in terms of the objectives of the Program, College, and University and to provide counsel for the Director on matters relating to curriculum, personnel, budget, and conferences.
b. To review and evaluate plans for, and outcomes of, Jewish Studies conferences and programs. Conferences and publications should be evaluated by their ability to provide: a) original perspectives on topics of national and international intellectual significance; b) opportunities for publications that foster the reputation of the Center and its members; and c) opportunities for wide participation by UF faculty, especially core and affiliated members of the Center for Jewish Studies, and students. Ordinarily, conferences, workshops, and lecture series should be open to the UF community and the general public.
2) Standing Committees will consist of at least three members of the faculty, two of which will be elected and the third appointed by the Director. Standing Committees are elected at the first faculty meeting of the academic year and serve for a full calendar year.
a) The Awards Committee will review applications for course development and discretionary research and travel awards to faculty and students.
3) Ad hoc Committees will consist of at least three members of the faculty appointed by the Director.
a) Hiring Committees will be appointed by the Director with at least three members committee chosen from among the Center�s faculty.
b) Personnel Committees will be appointed by the Director to oversee tenure and promotion cases as well as the annual evaluation of junior faculty.
c) The Curriculum Committee will be assembled as needed
VIII. Procedure for Amending the Bylaws
Proposals for altering, amending, or repealing these bylaws shall be endorsed by no less than two Advisory Committee members and shall be sent to all affiliate members at least thirty days prior to the meeting date on which a vote will take place. These bylaws may be altered, amended, or repealed by a 2/3 majority of the core and affiliate members provided that the 2/3 majority is not less than 50% of all eligible voting members.