Professor Emeritus status

6/29/2011: (revised, corrected to note existence of the old rules and the fact that they are also illegal)

At some universities it’s automatic. At the University of Montana, it’s apparently subject to the petty whims of the faculty.

The UO Senate approved new rules in 2010, but the entire package was rejected by General Counsel Randy Geller because it included a clause for free parking, which state rules prohibit. (Sensibly – everyone needs to pitch in to help pay for the jocks’ new arena garage.)

Provost Bean says this means the old rules are still in force:

FROM: “James Bean”
DATE: May 11, 2011 13:46:44 PDT

The recommendation from the senate was deemed illegal and hence not
acted upon by the President. The old policy is still in force. …

That old policy is here. But it also includes the offending parking clause. So by Bean’s Randy Geller’s logic it’s also all illegal. So maybe the new policy was rejected because it ruled out emeritus status on the basis of administrative service – very inconvenient for UO President Emeritus Dave Frohnmayer. Who knows.

So, currently, retiring professors must apparently rely on the patronage and whim of Academic Affairs VP Russ Tomlin. Russ can, apparently, even make the call on whether or not to cut off your email access – as UO did to Jean Stockard a few years ago.

This is not an acceptable situation. If you have more details on what is going on, please leave a comment.