Hogan Calls for Rebuilding Trust: What Would It Take?

UIUC President Michael Hogan issued a letter expressing regret about the breakdown of shared governance at the University — saying that he plans to work hard to regain the campus community’s trust.

What would it take to rebuild trust between faculty, students, staff and the President’s office?  Just as important, what would it take to rebuild shared governance?

We have a few ideas. For starters, as UIC faculty member Lennard Davis and GEO President Stephanie Seawell point out, in separate statements, Hogan and the Board of Trustees could recognize the legally elected unions on all campuses.

They could stop spending millions of dollars on union-busting consulting firms and fruitless, expensive legal delays.  They could acknowledge and treat fairly the people who really do make the University work.

What are your thoughts?

Please contribute your ideas about trust rebuilding to the moderated comments section, below.

Published by Susan Davis

I teach in the Department of Communication at the University of Illinois.

5 thoughts on “Hogan Calls for Rebuilding Trust: What Would It Take?

  1. President Hogan should explicitly recuse himself from any role in future decisions involving Prof. Lisa Troyer, owing to the extraordinary circumstances of her recruitment and hiring and his own inherent conflict of interest.

  2. To rebuild trust, the President should recognize the faculty union formed on our sister campus, UIC.

    The fact that it took an emergency meeting of the BOT to get President Hogan to issue a statement is remarkable in itself. This fact shows that the recognition of the faculty’s role in decision making is the furthest thing from President Hogan’s mind. This fact underscores how much we need a faculty union to secure a voice in university decision-making. The President did not even bother to refer to the faculty senates in his message. His statement of his mandates that have been “clear from the beginning” reveals his complete lack of interest in anything the faculty have to say.

    Finally, the President avoids speaking of his own responsibility in harming the reputation of the University of Illinois. His language suggests that he is going to save us from some harm done before he arrived here. Before he plays an important role in “rebuilding its reputation,” however, he must acknowledge his role in undermining our reputation.

  3. Well said, Harriet. It is remarkable the BOT had to chasten him before he said anything.
    This silence and then regret is “taking responsibility.”

    I agree with Bruce Reznick, he should recuse himself entirely. The entire
    faculty and staff will be thinking of him when they take their annual ethics test. But what will they be thinking?

  4. This quote from today’s News-Gazette says it all:

    “I lost track of the fact that even when people don’t agree with you, they feel better about it if they think you’ve listened to them,” he said.

    Hogan is only interested in appearances, not in any real change.

  5. And here is a statement from the News Gazette website from Donald Barnum, a professor of Management at UIC:

    “President Hogan can show that he means what he says by withdrawing his court case opposing the UIC faculty’s decision to include both tenure and nontenure system faculty in the same bargaining unit.

    Last year the UIC faculty democratically decided to unionize, and to form one integrated unit for collective bargaining. The faculty rejected the segregation of tenure-system from nontenure-system faculty by splitting the two classes into separate bargaining units.

    Hogan openly fought against the faculty’s decision, first by filing motion after motion requesting segregated units with the Illinois Educational Labor Relations Board (IELRB). After losing all of his motions, Hogan appealed the Board’s decisions to the Illinois courts, again arguing for segregated units. Now he is fighting against the Illinois Attorney General who agrees that UIC faculty have the legal right to the integrated bargaining unit that they voted for.

    So if Hogan truly has changed his spots, he can prove it by withdrawing his court case. Or, he can refuse to withdraw the case and confirm the wide-spread faculty opinion that his words mean nothing.” 3/9/12.

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