I have over five years of experience working with an Academic Senate, which has provided me great insight as to what I feel is an effective way to influence policy and practice at an institution. If I was a recently appointed President at an institution, charged with creating an Academic Senate, I would opt to develop a Functional Senate. According to Minor (2004), a functional senate “primarily operate[s] to represent and protect the interest of faculty in university decision making…The senate membership is elected and representative, usually acting through a faculty-led executive committee…The senate usually maintain[s] authority in areas that are traditionally the domain of the faculty such as curriculum, promotion, tenure, and academic standards…functional senates are not particularly assertive and usually do not set their own agenda. Instead, they respond to the initiatives and actions of the administration or issues that arise from the environment” (p. 348-349). Through my work with the UCLA Academic Senate, I had great exposure to the operations of a functional senate. This Senate was able to create a true, united, voice of the faculty. While the Senate was not always a favorite of the administration, I believe that their input was always respected. I believe the pure operations of a functional senate provides the foundation for success; while other senate models (e.g. Influential Senates, Ceremonial Senates, and Subverted Senates) may only provide either a controversial or symbolic voice that is never actually heard. With a functional senate, the faculty is given the opportunity to make a true contribution and this contribution is vital to the success of an institution of higher education.
Creating a digital identity is extremely important, especially within the realm of professional progression. While people may hear bits and pieces about who you are, when they are interested in learning more about who you, what you have done, and whether or not you may be qualified to do more, it is useful to have documented evidence, a concrete presence that can be referred to and explored by the inquirer at their speed. In addition to providing people with more information, an online presence also helps people discover you for the first time. Creating a digital identity has taken the idea of networking to places it was never able to go to before.
I am extremely excited to begin my digital identity through this EPortfolio. I have worked hard to garner the education I have earned and also to develop the professional skills and experience I have. This webpage offers the opportunity for me to display that work for the world to see. It is my hope that through this EPortfolio I can educate people about who I am professionally and some of my guiding personal values. I look forward to taking this journey with you!
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