Johns Hopkins University’s newly established Tenure Advisory Committee—a universitywide body that will advise President Ronald J. Daniels on the strength of tenure cases forwarded to him for consideration and will bring the university in line with how its peers address the tenure process—held its first meeting earlier this month.
Daniels charged the 14-member TAC with fostering consistently high academic standards across the schools. Chaired by Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs Sunil Kumar, the TAC will begin advising Daniels on all cases submitted to him for final approval by the board of trustees in February 2021.
“One of the most important academic decisions that we make as a university are the appointments and promotions of our faculty colleagues,” Daniels said. “I know my part in the tenure process will benefit tremendously from the cross-divisional and diverse faculty perspectives represented on this committee.”
The TAC was created based on the recommendation of the Faculty Advisory Committee on Tenure, or FACT, which formed in April 2019 to assess the value of creating a university-level tenure committee and to make recommendations for its composition and procedures. FACT issued its final report in favor of forming the TAC in December 2019 after nine months of extensive research, consultation, deliberation, and revision.
Historically at Hopkins, tenure recommendations were forwarded to the president by school-level academic councils, each of which approached the process differently and applied its own governance and weighting of factors. Going forward, the TAC—a diverse group senior faculty members from each of the university’s seven tenure-granting schools—will review school-level recommendations and advise the president as to whether the committee supports an individual school’s recommendation. The TAC may also advise on school-level tenure denials that are appealed to the provost.
Committee members are recommended by their school-level tenure advisory boards and approved by the president to serve three-year terms with the option to renew for a second term. The inaugural committee members are:
- Sunil Kumar (Chair), Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs
- Peter Agre, Bloomberg Distinguished Professor, Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology, Bloomberg School of Public Health, Departments of Biological Chemistry & Medicine School of Medicine
- Stefanie DeLuca, James Coleman Professor of Sociology & Social Policy, Department of Sociology, Krieger School of Arts and Sciences
- Darrell Gaskin, William C. and Nancy F. Richardson Professor in Health Policy, Director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Disparities Solutions, Bloomberg School of Public Health
- Hae-Ra Han, Professor, School of Nursing
- Richard Jasnow, Professor of Egyptology, Chair, Department of Near Eastern Studies, Krieger School of Arts and Sciences
- Pravin Krishna, Chung Ju Yung Distinguished Professor of International Economics and Business, School of Advanced International Studies
- Justin McArthur, Professor of Neurology, Director, Johns Hopkins Department of Neurology, School of Medicine
- Susan Michaelis, Professor of Cell Biology, School of Medicine
- Alicia Neu, Professor of Pediatrics, Chief, Division of Pediatric Nephrology, School of Medicine
- Jerry Prince, William B. Kouwenhoven Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Whiting School of Engineering
- Kathleen Sutcliffe, Bloomberg Distinguished Professor of Business and Medicine, Carey Business School, School of Medicine, School of Nursing
- Darryn Waugh, Professor, Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Krieger School of Arts and Sciences
- Louis Whitcomb, Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering Whiting.