Senate Blog

A Message From the Office of the President

On February 2nd, a group of senior faculty at WSU submitted a letter to President Schulz with questions about a number of challenges that WSU faces. The president issued a response on March 9th. The Faculty Senate Executive Committee has been granted permission from the president and from the letter signatories to post this important […]

WSU Pullman Childcare

In an effort to better understand the constraints in the WSU Children’s Center, we met with their interim director and assistant director. As we know, Pullman struggles to maintain sufficient childcare. The WSU Childcare Center plays an important role. But it has an 12-18 month waiting period with 200+ children on its waiting list. The […]

Salary Equity Update

The faculty senate executive officers met with the provost’s team on December 15, 2022, and asked for an update on the salary equity process. The intent of the process this year was to identify salaries that were more than a standard deviation below the mean and to raise them to at least that level. In […]

Graduate Student Unionizing

As you have no doubt heard, our graduate students are now represented by the United Autoworkers Union. The graduate student/union bargaining team will soon be beginning negotiations with the WSU bargaining team to build an initial collective bargaining agreement. During the bargaining process, it is important that faculty not do or say anything that creates […]

Addressing Culture in the WSU Police Department (Pullman Campus)

I contacted Chief Gary Jenkins to learn more about the precipitating events and response. As you are all probably aware, a few years ago allegations of sexual misconduct were made against a sergeant in the WSU police force. The three command staff at the time conducted an internal investigation. Subsequently, WSU investigated the command staff […]

Faculty Appointment Salary Distribution

Dear Colleagues – many faculty at WSU have 9-mo appointments whereby salary is distributed for the 9-month academic year, but not during the summer months. WSU has never been in a position to spread checks from <12-month appoints across 12 months. There are some complicated accounting reasons for this and while it is technically feasible, […]

Student Accommodations Update

Dear Colleagues – Kiara Drake, Assistant Director, Civil Rights Compliance, provided us with an updated file to help faculty better understand their role in the student accommodations process. Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns. View the linked Student Accommodation PowerPoint Sincerely, Douglas Call

9-over-12 month pay options

During the March 24th Faculty Senate meeting, a constituent concern was raised about why WSU does not provide an option for distributing a 9-mo salary over 12 months? Apparently, this has never been an option at WSU, but faculty were expecting this to be available after the implementation of Workday. To learn more, I reached […]

Parking Changes on the Pullman Campus

Dear Colleagues, Last Wednesday, Transportation Services alerted the Pullman campus about a proposed fee structure that will result in a 30% increase in parking permit fees between 2022 and 2025. Some parking lots will be reclassified, including instances where permit parking will be converted to hourly parking. I reached out to Christopher Boyan, Director of […]

Follow Up on WSU Masking Policy

Dear Colleagues: As a follow up to March 1st announcement of a new mask policy (link:, we asked the WSU administration for additional guidance about masking as requested during the constituent concerns section of the Faculty Senate meeting on March 4th. President Schulz and Provost Chilton have kindly provided a memo with additional information […]

Follow up on the Staff Recruitment & Retention Survey

Dear colleagues: The Faculty Senate Executive Committee conducted an informal, qualitative survey (Dec-Jan) to collect information about challenges that faculty face with staff recruitment and retention. I distilled the information from this survey to produce the following 2021 – 2022 Internal Report (PDF). We delivered the report to the President and Provost in January and […]

More on Administrative Expenses

Dear Colleagues: This past fall your Executive Committee engaged President Schulz and Provost Chilton in discussions about WSU’s administrative overhead. This has been a concern amongst the faculty in general, particularly with the attention to restructuring leadership with a One WSU focus. Provost Chilton and Fran Hermanson (Director of Institutional Research) addressed our concern by […]

How does WSU Spend ‘Grant Lands’ Revenue?

Dear Colleagues: On January 27th we received a constituent concern about how the money raised from the 1890 land grant to WSU are expended. These lands were originally expropriated from tribal nations. This concern has been raised previously including in senate and during meetings between the Faculty Senate Executive Committee and the President and Provost. […]

Reasonable Accommodations

Last fall we had several discussions about how presumptively vulnerable faculty and staff might be reluctant to seek reasonable accommodations for fear that causing extra work or impacting the unit’s budget might lead to subtle or explicit resentment or retaliation in terms of annual reviews and opportunities for career advancement. In short, this issue could […]

What is Happening with SPS?

Dear Colleagues, Sponsored Programs Services (SPS) is an important unit at WSU that is tasked with, among other things, setting up accounts when faculty are awarded grants and contracts, and invoicing expenditures. There have been numerous complaints about SPS service and the backlog of accounts needing attention (exceeding 800 at the beginning of the academic […]

Concerns about administrative bloat

Dear Colleagues: Speaking for your Faculty Senate Officers, I can confirm that we receive a lot of input about constituent concerns whether it be through our concerns website, Senate Steering and Senate meetings, or through discussions and emails. The path to addressing such concerns is, frankly, much smoother when we have data-informed discussions. Here is […]

Tracking materials through Faculty Senate

Dear Colleagues: During the constituent concern segment of the February 3rd Faculty Senate meeting, we discussed the perennial challenges of tracking paperwork through the committee review process. We agree that it is a challenge, but there are also a multitude of moving parts, a lack of standardized nomenclature, and different requirements for different reviews. Given […]

Activity insight…Yes, it’s that time!

Dear Colleagues: If it hasn’t happened already, you will soon be asked to embark on the annual ritual of preparing your materials for your annual reviews, and this invariably includes working with Activity Insight to document your efforts. Many of us have traditionally entered the minimal amount of information to ease the pain of this […]