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Engaging Shared Governance

February 20, 2020

by Lisa Carter, Vice Provost for Libraries and University Librarian

The University Library Committee met last week. The ULC is “the faculty advisory body for policy and planning for libraries throughout the university, including the General Library System.” I am grateful for those who serve on this committee. We have eight faculty members, two academic staff, two university staff, three students, and two representatives from University administration. Additionally, we have a Library Coordinating Council representative, two elected library staff members, and myself. I want to give a special thanks to Ellen Jacks and Cameron Cook, who are this year’s library staff representatives. Their hard work results in setting and communicating agendas, taking minutes and keeping the committee informed. You can see all the members and review past minutes and reports on the ULC webpage

At last week’s meeting, the committee discussed coordination between the three Libraries’ shared governance committees: ULC, the Memorial Library Committee, and the Archives Committee. Each of the committee charges needs to be updated to reflect how our libraries currently exist. Chair Lisa Bratzke led ULC and representatives from the other committees in a discussion about how the committees will work together to propose new charges.  

I also provided an update of our progress on our strategic planning efforts. While I had shared the mission, vision, and values previously, our discussion on Tuesday focused on the draft strategic directions that staff discussed in January. We received thoughtful questions and feedback about the framing and content of the strategic directions and the highlighted focus areas. Cameron took excellent notes on this input, and OLT will review these contributions as we analyze the information from the January staff engagement sessions. 

For those interested, we document the content presented at past ULC meetings on the committee’s webpage. Future agenda items will include revision of the Committee charges, how ULC members can improve communication with the broader university community, and discussion of Libraries’ programs and initiatives. Throughout our conversations, we will identify opportunities for ULC members to promote Libraries’ services. 

ULC meetings are open meetings, which means you can attend to hear about these agenda items and observe the committee’s deliberations. If you would like to stay informed about agendas and other information, you can subscribe to the ULCinfo listserv by sending a request to Ellen Jacks.