Executive Memorandum No. 2
The University of Nebraska Administrative Structure
The original goal of this land-grant university was, “To afford the inhabitants of this state with the means of acquiring a thorough knowledge of the various branches of literature, science, and the arts.” This goal has stood the test of time, inspiring the university's dedication to the education of students, research in a broad range of disciplines, and service to the state's citizens.
The University of Nebraska is the state's only public university. It became the first institution west of the Mississippi River to establish a Graduate School circa 1896 and later joined the prestigious Association of American Universities in 1909. Founded in Lincoln, the university included a medical center in Omaha beginning in 1902.
The University was reorganized under a 1968 act of the Nebraska Legislature. The legislation provided for the addition of the University of Nebraska at Omaha (formerly the municipal University of Omaha) and designated the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and the University of Nebraska Medical Center as separate campuses. In 1991, the University of Nebraska at Kearney (formerly Kearney State College) became a campus of the university. The Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture in Curtis is also part of the University of Nebraska, offering a two-year degree program with a focus on veterinary technology, ag production and business management or horticulture. The university also includes many research, extension, and service facilities statewide.
- The University of Nebraska is one university. It is governed by a single Board of Regents, and the Board of Regents has appointed a chief executive officer -- the President of the University of Nebraska -- as the single administrative officer responsible to the Board of Regents for the effective functioning of the University of Nebraska. The University conducts its programs primarily on four campuses with certain programs and operational functions assigned to the President's office.
- The chief operating officer for each campus is its Chancellor, with line authority delegated from the President of the University. The Chancellor of each campus is responsible for the conduct of the affairs of that campus consistent with policies established by the Board of Regents and administered through the office of the President. In turn, each Chancellor shall appoint appropriate administrative officers to assist in the conduct of campus affairs, and these campus administrative officers are responsible in a line authority to the Chancellor of the campus.
- The President of the University is assisted in the administration of the affairs of the institution by the four chief operating officers on the campuses, who also bear the title Vice President of the University along with the NU Vice President and IANR Vice Chancellor, and the four principal University Administration staff officers -- the Executive Vice President and Provost, the Vice President for Business and Finance, the Vice President and General Counsel, and the Vice President for University Affairs. These senior administrative officers, together with the President, form the President’s Council of the University. For purposes of easy reference, the office of President, including the staff of the President, shall be identified as "University Administration." Each campus shall be identified as "Campus Administration" with the appropriate campus prefix.
- The Chancellors, as the chief operating officers on each of the campuses, are responsible to the President and through the President to the Board of Regents. The Chancellor of each campus shall be responsible for providing the leadership for establishing the administrative structure necessary for the effective functioning of his/her campus. While substantial authority has been delegated to the Chancellors, it is important to remember that each Chancellor is also a University Vice President, a member of the President's staff, and that the University of Nebraska is one university. In addition to these general responsibilities, each Chancellor shall have the following specific responsibilities:
- To provide creative leadership in developing all the programs under his/her jurisdiction;
- To seek ways for improving the learning opportunities for students enrolled on his/her campus;
- To develop all possible techniques for helping faculty in their professional growth and development, and in their service to students;
- To organize his/her staff in the most effective and economical manner to help achieve campus and University objectives;
- To provide regular evaluation of performance for all employees and, to the extent possible, reward meritorious performance through salary increases and promotions;
- To prepare annual budget requests within the University guidelines and to develop the annual operating budget after appropriations have been finalized -- subject again to University guidelines;
- To maintain an effective planning program and to develop a system for monitoring the effective implementation of these plans;
- To develop and maintain an effective program of liaison with the leadership in the primary community serve
Because of the University-wide nature of the responsibilities of the principal administrative officers of the University, it is expected that the Chancellors shall from time to time be requested to represent the President on state and national committees, commissions, and programs.
- The Executive Vice President and Provost serves as the President's principal staff officer for academic affairs in the University. In this role the Executive Vice President and Provost is responsible for the following:
- Reviewing and recommending action to the President and the Board of Regents with respect to all proposed new academic programs;
- Reviewing and recommending personnel actions relating to academic appointments, terminations, promotion, continuous appointment, and salary for approval by the President and the Board of Regents;
- Providing leadership in coordinating academic programs on the campuses when such coordination promises to improve the effectiveness of the University;
- Monitoring the academic quality of the University;
- Preparing reports on and analyses of academic matters as directed by the Board of Regents or the President;
- Providing administrative leadership for the University-wide graduate program;
- Coordinating matters in the area of student affairs which have University-wide implications;
- Coordinating applications for grants from outside sources;
- Providing administrative leadership for the University Office of Research and Planning, and coordinating the long-range academic planning of the University;
- Providing advice and counsel to the President, the Chancellors, and the campus academic officers on matters which are primarily academic in nature; and
- Developing, in cooperation with the academic officers of the campuses, academic policies for the University as a whole.
The Executive Vice President and Provost shall serve as Chair of the University-wide Academic Officers Council which shall include the chief academic officer of each campus. He/she shall include the chief academic officer of each campus. He/she shall use this Council in both an advisory and policy role in executing the functions of his/her office. While the chief academic officers of the campuses shall be administratively responsible to their Chancellors, they shall be expected to cooperate fully with the Executive Vice President and Provost in matters that have University-wide implications. In recommendations for appointment of the chief campus academic officers, for their salary adjustments, or for their dismissal, the Chancellor of each campus shall be joined in his/her recommendations by the Executive Vice President and Provost. Before recommending the appointment of any person to the position of vice chancellor, dean, or director of any academic program, each Chancellor shall seek and consider the advice of the Executive Vice President and Provost.
- The Vice President for Business and Finance serves as the principal staff officer for the President for all matters which are primarily of a business or administrative nature. In this role the Vice President for Business and Finance has responsibility for the following functions:
- The development, implementation, and maintenance of a uniform accounting system for the entire University;
- The development of an annual University-wide budget request for presentation to the Board of Regents;
- The development of the annual budget for the entire University for presentation to the Board of Regents after the Legislature and Governor have established the University's annual appropriations;
- The development of uniform personnel policies for the nonacademic employees of the University, including fringe benefits, working conditions, employment practices, grievances, and compensation policies;
- Recommending appropriations requests for new construction, for major renovation and remodeling projects, and for major repairs. These recommendations are to be made only after an analysis of existing available space and its functional condition, current utilization of available space, and determination that the recommended course of action provides the most economical solution to the problem consistent with functional requirements;
- Recommending a final list of architects to the Board of Regents for new construction and major remodeling projects in accordance with established Board procedures;
- The coordination of all business policies and practices of the University with particular concern for achieving savings through consolidated purchasing of high volume items;
- The administration of the University computer system;
- Preparing such reports and analyses as may be required of him/her by the Board of Regents or the President;
- Coordination, as necessary, with appropriate state government offices in the administration of accounting, budgeting, and computer operations of the University.
- In meeting these staff responsibilities, the Vice President for Business and Finance shall establish and chair the University-wide Council of Chief Business Officers and shall seek the advice and assistance of this Council in the conduct of his/her duties. While the chief campus business officers shall be administratively responsible to their Chancellors, it is essential that close and open cooperation characterize the relationship of these officers and the Vice President for Business and Finance. In order to underscore the necessity of such a cooperative relationship while still protecting the concept of a single line of administrative authority, each Chancellor shall appoint, adjust the salary, and initiate dismissal proceedings for his/her chief campus business officer only with the full and prior concurrence of the Vice President for Business and Finance. In addition, before recommending the appointment of any person to the position of Business Manager or Controller, the Chancellor shall seek and consider the advice of the Vice President for Business and Finance.
- The Vice President for University Affairs shall serve as the primary officer of the University in representing the entire University to the Governor's office, the Legislature, agencies of state government, and to Congress and federal agencies. Specifically, this office shall have responsibility for the following duties:
- To represent the position of the University as determined by the Board of Regents or by the President acting for the Board on all matters coming before the executive or legislative branches of state government, and on all legislative matters of interest to the University with respect to federal agencies or to the Congress of the United States;
- To serve as the representative of the President both internally and externally in the absence of the President unless other officers of the University have been specifically designated.
- In fulfilling his/her responsibilities as legislative liaison officer for the University, the Vice President for University Affairs shall include a representative designated by each Chancellor and shall regularly discuss legislation of interest to the University as a whole or any component of the University. The Vice President for University Affairs shall be free to call on campus personnel for counsel and assistance when he/she deems such counsel and assistance necessary. To assure orderly procedures in maintaining the University's relationships with government and to assure a full flow of information, all campus personnel are expected to keep the Vice President for University Affairs informed of all contacts either oral or written -- with the executive or legislative branches of the federal or state government. This is not intended to restrict immediate response to inquiries from these governmental resources but rather to insure that appropriate persons are informed and involved.
Edited for conformance April 2011
Retained for historical clarification and precedence