Liberal Arts Engagement Hub Advisory Committee Charter

Revised August 2021


The Liberal Arts Engagement Hub Advisory Committee’s (advisory committee) purpose is to ensure that the perspectives of community-engaged faculty, staff and students, and community members, are actively sought and used to inform the development and operation of the Liberal Arts Engagement Hub (The Hub). This includes being invited to provide input on issues such as Hub leadership models, programming priorities, operating policies, and procedures, in addition to reviewing and making recommendations regarding Hub Residency proposals and other Hub programs as appropriate. 

While responsibility for operating The Hub and making decisions that impact its daily functioning falls to College of Liberal Arts employees, given its intent, the University's focus on reciprocal engagement, and the potential to transform how the College engages with the community, The Hub should operate with an ethos that invites input from the advisory committee regularly so that the perspectives of those who are the Hub’s most important stakeholders are considered. The opinion of the advisory committee can be sought in the context of formal meetings, but it can also be sought regularly through email and other informal ways. 

Meeting Frequency

The advisory committee should meet 4 - 6 times per year, or more if necessary. An annual meeting schedule will be confirmed at the beginning of each academic year. 

Advisory Committee Leadership

The chair of the advisory committee shall be the associate dean for diversity, equity, and inclusion or their designee. (Note: This will be changed to the faculty director, once that position is filled.)

Advisory Committee Membership

In order to be mindful of power dynamics inherent in University-formed advisory committees, the advisory committee should have parity with regard to the number of University/CLA employees (i.e., faculty and staff) and community members who serve on the committee (not including the chair and ex-officio members). 

There is no minimum or maximum number of advisory committee members, although care should be taken to avoid having a committee that is too small or large to effectively carry out its stated purpose.

The chair shall invite faculty, staff, student, and community members to serve on the advisory committee for an initial period of two years. If agreed to by the advisory committee member and the chair, they may serve another two-year term. 

When there is a need for faculty, staff, and/or students to be added to the committee, the chair should put a call out to department chairs and directors, and community-engaged faculty to seek names of those who should be invited to apply to become a member of the advisory committee. 

When there is a need to recruit community members to join the committee, nominations should be sought from community-engaged faculty in CLA, as well as from former Hub Residency project leads who are community members. Those interested in serving on the advisory committee should be able to demonstrate a commitment to The Hub’s mission and would be asked to answer a few questions regarding their interest in serving, their involvement or interest in public engagement in the humanities or humanistic social sciences, etc.  Their applications will be reviewed by current committee members who will recommend new committee members to the chair. 

In addition to the faculty/staff, students, and community members noted above, as part of the desire to create a shared ethos of care and responsibility for the Liberal Arts Engagement Hub’s physical space, each year the chair will invite leaders of  Hub Residency projects to apply to serve on the advisory committee for a one-year term. This service will provide them an opportunity to participate in the selection of Hub Residencies for the following year, in addition to providing input regarding the development and operation of The Hub alongside other advisory committee members. When adding new advisory committee members from among Hub Residency project leaders, the chair should be mindful of maintaining parity between University/CLA employees and community members.

Advisory Committee Decision-Making

It is up to the chair to determine if a formal vote is needed by the advisory committee on a particular issue that is put before them for input. In instances where votes are not taken, the Chair should seek to identify the “consensus of the advisory committee,” or where consensus is not possible to ensure that dissenting voices are acknowledged. 

Advisory Committee Meeting Summaries 

Summary notes should be taken during advisory committee meetings with an understanding that they would be made available for public access as a way of demonstrating transparency with regard to the work of the advisory committee.

Review of Hub Residency Proposals

The advisory committee will be asked to review all Hub Residency proposals submitted and evaluate them using a provided rubric. Their input will be used to determine a “short-list” of proposals that should be considered for funding. Once those proposals have been identified, the chair or their designee will work with the appropriate CLA employees to determine which proposals are approved for a Hub Residency based on a number of factors, including available funding and how and when the proposals seek to use The Hub.

Advisory committee members who have a conflict with a particular proposal (conflicts could include submitting a proposal for review, being a key collaborator in a submitted proposal, or having a close friendship or relationship with the person/organization submitting a proposal) should recuse themselves from any discussions evaluating that proposal.

Addressing Concerns About Advisory Board Functioning, Sexual Misconduct, Identity-based Discrimination, and Bias

NOTE: All University policies that govern the behavior of students, faculty, staff, and guests are applicable to the operations of this committee. 

Addressing Sexual Misconduct

As members of The Hub’s advisory committee, we encourage you to consult and familiarize yourself with the University’s Sexual Harassment, Sexual Assault, Stalking and Relationship Violence Policy. Committee members who are University employees must report:

  1. sexual assault, stalking, and relationship violence, regardless of whether it is directed at students, staff or third parties; and
  2. sexual harassment directed at students, that you learn about.

University employees who learn about sexual misconduct committed by, or directed at, University visitors while on campus are required to report this misconduct. Non-University committee members are considered University visitors and are not required to report sexual misconduct, although it is encouraged. We invite you to refer to the Hub User Manual for more details on how to report or by visiting the University’s Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Office website.

Addressing Identity-based Discrimination and Bias

Identity-based discrimination and bias incidents may also be reported through the Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Office or anonymously through the Bias Response Referral Network (BRRN).

Addressing Concerns About Advisory Committee Functioning

If there are concerns about the functioning of the advisory committee, including but not limited to concerning behavior displayed by committee members and disagreements about the decision-making process, these concerns should be discussed with the Chair of the committee. If the discussion does not result in an adequate response to expressed concerns, it would be appropriate to contact the CLA Associate Dean for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion to discuss concerns. 

Resignation and Termination of Service

Committee members who wish to resign should inform the chair in writing or some other documentable way. Ideally, a committee member who wishes to resign before their term ends would indicate their intention to resign at least two months prior to leaving the committee, but that much lead time may not always be possible. 

If in the opinion of the chair, a committee member is not able to adequately serve as a committee member (e.g., they frequently miss meetings, they engage in disruptive behavior during meetings, they act in ways that may be harmful to the reputation or functioning of The Hub), the chair will meet with them about resigning from the committee. If after that discussion there is no agreement between the chair and the committee member as to whether they should remain on the committee or leave the committee, the chair can remove them from the committee after consulting with other committee members. 

The chair has the discretion to decide if vacant advisory committee positions should be filled after the vacancy occurs or if the position should be filled as part of the normal process of identifying new committee members. 

Amending this Charter

This document should be reviewed at least annually to identify whether changes are necessary.  Any substantive changes should be reviewed with the Advisory Committee before being adopted.