137.3 Political Activity

Created by: Dana Trebing on 10/15/2004
Category: 1 - Academic Affairs; 30 - Freedom
Originator: Faculty Status Committee
Current File: 137.3
Adoption Date: 11/19/2012
Reviewed for Currency: 11/19/2012
Replaces File: 137.3
Date of Origin: 11/12/1975
Classification: Faculty
In Archive? 0

137.3 Political Activity


A. Background

Furman University believes in the legitimacy and social importance of appropriate political activity by members of the faculty and acknowledges their right to participate in such endeavors.


B. Policy

The Administration of Furman University endorses the basic statement on professional and political activity issued by the American Association of University Professors (AAUP, 9th Ed., 2001, p. 33), which states among other things that "college and university faculty members are citizens, and, like other citizens, should be free to engage in political activities so far as they are able to do so consistently with their obligations as teachers and scholars."


C. Guidelines

1. Many kinds of political activity (e.g., holding part-time office in a political party, seeking election to any office under circumstances that do not require extensive campaigning, or serving by appointment or election in a part-time political office) are consistent with effective service as a member of a faculty. Other kinds of political activity (e.g., intensive campaigning for elective office, serving in a state legislature, or serving a limited term in a full-time position) may require that the professor seek a leave of absence.

2. A faculty member seeking leave for political activity should recognize that he or she has a primary obligation to the institution and to his or her growth as an educator and scholar; and be mindful of the problem which a leave of absence can create for administration, colleagues, and students.

3. Furman will provide institutional arrangements to permit political activity similar to those applicable to other public or private extramural service. Such arrangements may include the reduction of the faculty member's workload or a leave of absence for the duration of an election campaign or a term of office, accompanied by equitable adjustment of compensation when necessary.

4. A leave of absence for political activity will come under the institution's normal rules and regulations for leaves or absence (see File 165.5). Such a leave will not affect unfavorably the tenure status of a faculty member, except that time spent on such leave from academic duties will not count as probationary service. The terms of a leave and its effect on the professor's status will be set forth in writing.

5. In making political statements and participating in political activity the faculty member should make clear that the statements and activity are not those of the University.