A&M Faculty Sounds Displeasure With Murano Assessment

By: Kristen Ross & Steve Fullhart Email
By: Kristen Ross & Steve Fullhart Email

The tables have turned: just days after learning Texas A&M President Elsa Murano scored low in her first performance assessment, the man behind the low marks is now receiving some strong criticism from faculty members himself.

In a two-hour faculty senate meeting Monday, staff addressed Chancellor Mike McKinney's low ranking of Murano, calling it unprofessional, finding issue with the format of the evaluation itself, and the lack of suggested ways to improve.

The assessment, which covered Murano's first year as president, gave her low marks in a number of categories. Click here for more on the report.

Many at the senate meeting also said McKinney has undermined the presidency with talks of plans to combine the chancellor and president spots. McKinney has acknowledged there has been discussion about that move, but that it is just one of a number of options discussed when it comes to streamlining and cost-cutting in the System.

In the end, the faculty called it a day with three big things still on the table that will be carried over to next month's meeting.

The first would be to draft a vote of no-confidence in the Chancellor.

The second: draft a committee to work with the Board of Regents to try and bridge the gap in communication between the Regents and faculty members.

Lastly, senate members also discussed the idea of drafting a motion of confidence in Murano's abilities as President.

"Our understanding is that the opinion of faculty and other stakeholders of the university would be sought out by the decision makers and taken seriously, and there would be a chance that input would change their decision making," said Professor Robert Bednarz.

"Our peer institutions look around and shake their heads at the turmoil at Texas A&M," added Professor Doug Slack. "It really hurts us in trying to attract new family members."

Some members of the Faculty Senate are expected to meet with Chancellor McKinney a week from Monday at a retreat, hoping to get a better understanding of what role McKinney thinks the faculty can play in determining the future of A&M.

President Murano was also invited to that meeting, but faculty senate members say she declined due to other obligations.

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