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Food Science Department Bylaws



The University of Tennessee requires that each department, section, or separate unit adopt bylaws defining the core policies and procedures of the unit. These By-laws cover faculty governance in which opinions, advice, and consent of faculty members are required or essential.


The mission of the Department of Food Science of The University of Tennessee is “to improve food safety and quality through fundamental and applies research, prepare graduates for the

global food industry or health professional programs, and deliver effective outreach education to the citizens of Tennessee and beyond.”

1.1. Membership

All faculty members and other academic, exempt, non-exempt, and salaried student employees are considered members of the Department.

1.2. The Faculty

Membership of the faculty of the Department of Food Science shall consist of all persons holding departmental appointments as Instructors, Assistant Professors, Associate Professors, Professors, Adjunct faculty, and Emeritus faculty.

1.3. Voting Members

1.3a. Voting membership of the Department shall consist of all faculty members who are employed in a professional track position of at least 75% within the Department. All such persons shall enjoy full voting membership in the Department, with the exception of voting on matters related to retention, promotion, and tenure (see Article III, C). Persons employed in the Department at less than 75% will be granted voting privileges with the approval of two-thirds of the voting faculty. In general, this will be limited to rare exceptions.

1.3b. Faculty members appointed to or holding non-professional track positions in the Department and who are not salaried in the Department, including Emeritus faculty, Adjunct faculty, visiting faculty, and faculty with full-time administrative appointments (other than the Department Head), shall be regarded as non-voting members of the departmental faculty, but shall enjoy the right of voice.

1.3c. Faculty members who are on full- or part-time leaves of absence (or reduced-time) shall enjoy the voting status that would be available to them were they not on leave.

1.3d Proxy votes will be accepted but must be presented in a memorandum to the Department Head in advance of the meeting. A proxy vote shall not be used in lieu of a faculty member’s presence in the determination of a quorum.

D. Department Head

1. The Department Head is a voting member of the faculty who is assigned the duty of administering the department, the primary link between the Department and the UTIA administration. Among the responsibilities of the Department Head are administration of teaching, research and extension activities, personnel and facilities, financial matters, curricular and academic affairs, and international activities of the Department. In addition, the Department Head should provide leadership in creating and maintaining linkages with the food industry and in development (fundraising) activities.

2. The Department Head encourages participation by the faculty in decision-making and departmental governance. The Department Head consults with the faculty and other employees on issues of concern to them. The Department Head is required to uphold University of Tennessee and UTIA policies and procedures.

E. DepartmentalFacultyMeetings

II. Departmental meetings shall be scheduled regularly and not less frequently than twice per semester during the academic year. Additional meetings may be called by the Department Head or at the written request of twenty-five percent of the faculty.

III. One-half of the voting membership of the faculty shall constitute a quorum. The withdrawal of any voting member after the commencement of a meeting shall have no effect on the existence of a quorum after a quorum has been established at such a meeting. A simple majority of those present shall decide an issue.

IV. The Department Head shall serve as chair of faculty meetings, unless delegated by the Department Head to another faculty member. Minutes of the meetings and reports submitted to the faculty shall be kept on file in the department office, and copies will be distributed to the faculty and others designated by the Department Head.

V. The initial agenda for regular faculty meetings shall be prepared by the Department Head and distributed in written form to the faculty a reasonable time before the meeting. Additional items may be suggested by individual faculty and, at the discretion of the Department Head, be added to the agenda for the forthcoming meeting. Alternatively, items may be placed on the agenda by written petition of twenty-five percent of the voting faculty. In addition, agenda items may originate in departmental committees. All such additions to the agenda must be made a reasonable time before the meeting so as to be incorporated into the final agenda for the meeting. Reports and other documents requiring departmental deliberation shall be submitted to faculty members at least three calendar days in advance of the meeting during which the report or document is to be considered. Under exceptional circumstances, these requirements may be waived. Additionally, at the beginning of each faculty meeting, the Department Head will call for and consider “other” additions to the agenda. Such additions should be related to matters that have arisen in such time as to preclude inclusion in the agenda distributed reasonably in advance of the meeting and require faculty attention before the next scheduled meeting. “Other” additions will be considered for issues that are for faculty discussion only.

VI. Recording Secretary – A record of the m2eetings will be kept. The Department Head shall appoint one faculty member or other designee to act as the Recording Secretary for each meeting.

The Recording Secretary shall keep minutes of departmental meetings, and after approval by the Department Head these shall be distributed via a departmental server.


A. Standing Committees

1. Standing committees shall be established to facilitate execution of faculty responsibilities relative to academic, departmental, and related matters. Except where otherwise indicated, the following policies shall apply: The Department Head will appoint members of each committee and its chair and, as an ex-officio member of all standing committees, will be informed of the time and location of committee meetings. Where appropriate, students and staff may serve on committees and will be appointed by the Department Head.

2. Regular appointment to standing committees should be made by the Department Head before the beginning of the academic year. Each standing committee shall inform the faculty of its substantive activities, decisions, and recommendations at intervals consistent with the level of committee activity. Committee chairs are responsible for ensuring that meeting minutes are maintained and made available to the faculty.

B. Ad Hoc Committees

1. Functional activities and necessities of the Department, other than those addressed by named standing committees, that require short-term activity will be addressed by an ad hoc committee duly assigned by the Department Head. The Department Head, as an ex-officio member of all standing committees, will be informed of the time and location of committee meetings.


A. Regular Faculty Positions

1. The process of recruiting, interviewing, and selecting faculty for regular appointments salaried within the Department shall be conducted according to University policy.

B. Adjunct Faculty Positions

1. Adjunct faculty have less than a full-time commitment to the UTIA, are appointed outside the tenure system, and are unsalaried with respect to their adjunct appointment but may be paid for providing specific services such as teaching a course.

2. Nominations for adjunct appointments shall be made to the Department Head, who will initiate the process of consideration for appointment. Nominations must come from a regular faculty member and shall include a written statement indicating the rationale for making the adjunct appointment.

3. Appointment of adjunct faculty, with respect to procedures, titles, duties, privileges, length of appointment, and promotion shall be governed by the UTIA “Policy on Adjunct Faculty Appointments.”

C. Retention, Promotion, and Tenure

1. Formal recommendation in matters concerning retention, promotion, and tenure shall originate with the Department Head and shall follow the guidelines of the UTIA Faculty Handbook. Departmental recommendations to the Dean(s) shall be determined by a vote of the tenured faculty who are salaried in the Department.


A. Origin of Amendments

Proposed amendments to the By-laws shall originate from the Department Head or from at least twenty-five percent of the faculty members. Proposed amendments shall be presented in writing to the departmental faculty members for consideration at any regular meeting or any special meeting called for that purpose. Grammatical errors, misspelled words, and other simple typographical errors may be corrected at the discretion of the Department Head and shall not require faculty consideration and approval.

B. Notice

The proposed amendments shall be distributed with the agenda for the meeting at which they are to be discussed. Consideration of the amendments for voting by the departmental faculty members shall occur at a subsequent meeting, not less than ten days later, when the matter will have been included again in the agenda.

C. Ratification

These bylaws must be ratified by a majority of the voting members of the tenured and tenure- track faculty.

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