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In the next few months UTRGV will launch its website that will include an inventory and description of its programs. In the meantime, the Project South Texas website will have news releases that include that kind of information as it is approved by the Board of Regents.
Actually, there is no "3 limit" per institution rule on this program. Each year the total $187,000 state-wide funding of the $5,000 awards is simply divided by the number of institutions who have faculty applying. So, the fewer institutions applying, the larger the number of the $5,000 awards are made to the those applying. Faculty seeking qualified renewals of their assistance do get priority, irrespective of which institution they are applying from. We have requested, and the BCDFELRP have agreed to consider, a request that UTRGV candidates be given priority for the first year of its operation. So there does not appear to be much of a negative effect upon UTRGV faculty compared to previous awards at UTB and UTPA.
Degree plans being followed by students at UTB and UTPA will continue for a reasonable time to allow students to finish their degrees. Degree plans for graduate programs may be adopted by UTRGV later or may be re-designed to meet the needs of students, education, or to adopt to changes in technology, methods and other evolving features of the discipline.
The organizational structure will not be finalized by July 15th but this will not affect the transition process for tenured and tenure-track faculty.
No. UTRGV is a different university from UTB and UTPA. Only students graduating after August, 2015 can earn degrees from UTRGV. Former graduates of UTB and UTPA will always be graduates of those institutions and their degrees will always be valid.
While the calendar for UTRGV has not yet been developed, it will be published at about the same time as previous ones for UTB and UTPA, and well before April 2015.
UTRGV will serve as custodian for student records for UTB and UTPA, once they are abolished. Transcripts for credits and degrees earned at UTB and UTPA will be available through UTRGV's Office of the Registrar, though they will be identified as credits and degrees earned at UTB or UTPA, not UTRGV. Transcripts for courses and grades will be titled under the entity that issued the credits. Only students graduating after August, 2015 can earn degrees from UTRGV. Former graduates of UTB and UTPA will always be graduates of those institutions and their degrees will always be valid.
The requirements are set out below. These are the same requirements that were used for the May, 2014 VSIP for UTB faculty. To be eligible for the VSIP, a faculty member must, as of May 15, 2014:
[NOTE: Meeting these age and service requirements is not a guarantee of eligibility for retirement benefits under the Texas Retirement System (TRS), the Optional Retirement Program (ORP) or health and other insurance benefits under the UT System Group Employee Insurance Program as a retiree.]
AND, as of May 23, 2014, have not:
Admissions requirements for all graduate programs will be considered at the next meeting of the UT System Board of Regents.
Yes, UT System Police of the new UTRGV will continue to provide police services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at the campuses. Regarding pay levels, there is a market analysis of all positions that is being performed by the UT System. This will assist the new UTRGV Police Department help determine competitive pay with a larger area of responsibility. The current operations at UT Brownsville and UT Pan American are fully capable to respond to most critical incidents on campus and is augmented by UT a regional response force that can assist any campus in the RGV in an emergency situation. On a critical incident or a major event, outside agencies can be added to assist. UT System Police are also equipped with the latest crime suppression tools and resources for enforcement and investigation. From providing additional detectives for a major case response to sharing specialized equipment at an event, the UT System Police is fully capable and equipped to conduct almost any policing function system wide.
When the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) meets in June 2015, it is expected to grant UTRGV accreditation and immediately thereafter the UT System Board of Regents will officially open UTRGV.
The medical school is interested in adding an Emergency Medicine Residency program and expects to begin planning soon.
You are right that a great university must compete to offer the support and incentives needed to attract and retain the highest quality faculty. UTRGV intends to become a great, new university.
President Bailey will be presenting proposed admissions standards for first-time freshmen and transfer students at the July Board of Regents meeting. We plan to have the UTRGV admissions application available for prospective applicants in September through Apply Texas, the Texas common application. We will host meetings about these criteria at each of the campuses later this month and will publish the criteria upon BOR approval.
UTRGV, having multiple campuses across the region, will use this valuable resource to best serve its students. Planning is underway to use physical transportation, virtual capacity, responsive class scheduling and any other innovations available to make accessing excellent UTRGV programs convenient for students across the Valley.
A process will be developed to solicit input from students and other key stakeholders on the to the new university colors and mascot. This will likely occur in late 2014.
UT System and TSC officials have worked out back-up plans with SACS to ensure that both TSC and UTRGV are accredited by SACS, even in the unlikely event there is any delay in the planned schedule now in place.
Phase I is the faculty hiring that will occur pursuant to the policy Hiring of Tenured and Tenure-Track Faculty Members to The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley. If a tenured faculty member is eligible for the voluntary separation incentive package, but does not timely enter into the agreement, he/she may proceed to the Phase I faculty hiring process for UTRGV. Please refer to the Frequently Asked Questions that were issued May 19th along with the policy. As stated in FAQ Question 18, if you do not fulfill the criteria in Phase I or secure a position in Phase II you may not be offered a tenured or tenure-track position at UTRGV.
Dr. Leon, the Special Advisor, will conclude his assignment on July 31, 2014. We have been very fortunate to have his excellent leadership and advice during this last year.
The organizational structure and staffing needs of UTRGV are currently being developed. Since this plan has not been finalized, the best answer that can be provided at this time is that it is anticipated that a great majority of UTPA and UTB staff will be offered a position at UTRGV. UTRGV will strive to create a hiring process that will provide as much advance written notice as possible to any employee who is not selected for a UTRGV job for which the employee applies. Currently, there is no plan to offer a separation program for such employees.
This issue is currently under review.
As to your question regarding tenure, please refer to the answers in FAQ Questions 33 and 34 that were issued May 19th along with the policy Hiring of Tenured and Tenure-Track Faculty Members to The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley. Please bear in mind that UTRGV will not know which positions will be available in Phase II until the first phase is complete. With regard to eligibility for retirement health insurance, an employee who transfers from a benefits eligible position at one UT System institution to a benefits eligible position at another UT System institution is permitted to transfer all of his or her prior creditable service with him or her to the new position. Generally speaking, this means that if you leave your current UT institution and are hired at UTRGV, it should have no impact on your eligibility to qualify for benefits under the UT System Employees Group Health Insurance Plan as a retiree. However, since specific age and years of service requirements vary for each individual based on their initial date of employment with UT System, and other factors may also affect eligibility for retiree benefits, you should check with your employing institution to determine the specific requirements you would need to meet in order to qualify for UT System Employees Group Health Insurance Plan as a retiree once you reach the age of 67.
As stated in paragraph 13, an employee considering executing the Voluntary Separation Agreement and Release of All Claims is advised to consult with an attorney before executing the Agreement.
The members of the Transition Team you are referring to are the initial members. IT is one of the 23 key function groups under the Project Management plan and has already begun its work planning for the transition of IT at UTRGV. Representatives from UTS, UTPA, UTB and UTHSCSA are all cooperating in the development of the implementation plan. All of the 23 function group leaders are and will be engaged in the transition. We are also planning an internal communications model that will help ensure the work of these groups is shared at regular intervals.
UTRGV is presently developing a communications plan and timeline for launching its new name and brand that will set dates for the transitional steps, such as the use of the UTRGV name, launch of the website, publications and new email addresses. The website will launch in September.
UTRGV will continue to offer scholarships to aggressively recruit top students and we intend to maintain the successful scholarship programs that are offered by UTPA and UTB now until we roll out our new array of student support programs and services. (Our new Student Lifecycle Management program will provide much more support than scholarships) More details about these and new scholarship opportunities will be announced soon.
Please refer to the policy Hiring of Tenured and Tenure-Track Faculty Members to The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley and the Frequently Asked Questions that were issued along with that policy regarding the faculty hiring processes.
Although exceptions to the VSIP criteria may not be made, the phrase earning retirement creditable service has a distinct meaning. Thus, if you did not receive a voluntary separation package and believe that you may be eligible, please discuss this with your institution’s Office of Human Resources.
Thanks for bringing this rumor to our attention. It is not true. There are no layoffs planned. As Dr. Garcia and Dr. Nelsen will be fully engaged in their new roles by this fall, UTB and UTPA will still need presidential leadership until UTRGV achieves its accreditation and/or UTB and UTPA are abolished. In fact, this level of leadership is required by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACSCOC), the main accrediting entity for universities in the south. While President Bailey and his transition team are focused on launching UTRGV, they will work closely with these interim presidents to ensure our students remain our top priority at the current campuses. We expect to share more details about these interim presidents this week.
A staff hiring policy and procedures have not yet been finalized.
The current plan is to matriculate our first medical school class in the summer of 2016. The accreditation process has begun and we expect approval for recruitment to occur in the spring of 2015.
UTRGV will honor the articulation agreements with other colleges and universities while it works to adopt its own. Meetings with our primary two year partners (STC, TSC, and TSTC) are already underway to ensure that students can transfer seamlessly from these campuses to UTRGV.
A staff hiring policy and procedures have not yet been finalized. However, it is anticipated that positions will be reviewed and considering the position job functions, the appropriate degree(s) and experience will be required.
The Chancellor has made many public appearances and participated in open forums fielding questions all across the Valley. This website has published over 400 answers to anonymously posed questions and posted many reports and press releases that have described what the new university will be, as each key decision has been made. The development of the university is complex and requires much research. The implementation plan is not complete and so there will be many more questions, which will be answered as decisions are made and UTRGV begins to take form. We certainly understand how this great change is unsettling to employees and students and we will continue to keep everyone informed as decisions are made and the plan is finalized. You can attend the next event on Wednesday, June 25th. Chancellor Francisco G. Cigarroa, M.D. invites the faculty, staff and students to join him and UTRGV President Guy Bailey for an update on the transition process as we prepare to launch UT Rio Grande Valley in August 2015. Chancellor Cigarroa and President Bailey will host a forum at 10 a.m. in UTPA’s Student Union Auditorium on Wednesday, June 25, and in the Gran Salon of the UTB Student Union Building from 1:30-2:30 p.m. The events will be streamed live on the web and can be viewed at www.utpa.edu and www.utb.edu.
Salaries at UTRGV will be market competitive and negotiated between UTRGV and individual job candidates.
A B.S. in Biochemistry was not proposed and is not among the initial UTRGV programs submitted for consideration for approval by the Board of Regents and so will not be offered by UTRGV in the fall 2015 semester.
UTRGV is presently developing a communications plan and timeline for launching its new name and brand that will set dates for the transitional steps, such as the use of the UTRGV name. For now, only UTB and UTPA are the operating universities so these should be listed as your institution for now, regardless of potential publication date.
UTRGV is presently developing a communications plan and timeline that will include the conventions to use for UTRGV. Until UTRGV is made officially a university, expected in the summer of 2015, the operating entities that can have the affiliation are UTB and UTPA.
There are no plans for a program in dentistry at this time.
The medical school will offer only the MD. However, there is a recommendation from an academic program working group to offer the Doctor of Physical Therapy. A proposal would need to be submitted to both the UT System Board of Regents and the Coordinating Board for approval of any new degree program. There is no further information about when or if such a proposal will be going forward at this time.
Chancellor Cigarroa and President Bailey plan to visit UTB and UTPA on June 25th and address questions regarding administrative leadership during the transition year at that time.
Deloitte began work on the institutional design project in the last few weeks, under the direction of UT System leadership, UTRGV President Bailey, and members of the UTRGV Transition Team, comprised of leadership from UTB and UTPA. The project will be finished by early August. Public universities, much like other types of organizations, regularly employ consultants from private industry who maintain expertise in a needed specialty or field of work. Deloitte has an extensive background in higher education, particularly related to helping organizations think through new structures, processes, and technology. A key aspect and charge of the Deloitte’s work is incorporating information and recommendations from the 40+ working group reports that were developed through thousands of hours of discussion by UTB/UTPA faculty, staff, and students during the Fall 2013/Spring 2014. The strategic planning and blueprinting phase of the planning process will be collaborative and involve all key stakeholders over the next 12 months.
Can you make a Social Media page ie. Facebook, to answer these questions? It would allow for people to give additional feedback on specific questions asked.
We are presently exploring other ways to organize the information from the web questions and answers that is a better fit for our need to have time to research questions for the best accurate answers, posted as quickly as possible. This usually takes a few days. Real time conversational exchanges are a little more challenging but we are exploring the use of social media for this purpose so stay tuned.
The organization design has not been completed so we do not have a precise enough number to fine tune this answer. However, we do know that the new institution will have one academic and one administrative structure that will cover the entire Valley and that a key guiding principle for UTRGV is to become one of the largest and most successful Hispanic-serving Institutions in the country. These two forces will reduce the need for some positions but at the same time produce new positions focused on increasing student success, research productivity, community impact, and medical education. Thus, the overall impact is hard to determine without a clearer understanding of the new organizational structure. However, what is clear is that as an “anchor” or “community engaged” institution in the region, UTRGV will be a leader in fostering economic development, community and global partnerships, and job growth that will drive improvements in the quality of life and standard of living for all citizens of the Valley.
Phase I hiring will not be completed by July 7th. Faculty considering the VSIP will have to make their decision based on the information available during the VSIP review period.
No. While it is anticipated that the majority of UTPA and UTB faculty and staff will be offered employment at UTRGV, UTRGV cannot guarantee employment.
Pursuant to the VSIP program and Agreement, if the individual is not on the payroll through May 31, 2015 he/she is not eligible for the Voluntary Incentive Payment; however, a faculty member may be eligible to remain on the payroll by utilizing available leave entitlements.
The University cannot advise individual employees regarding their retirement decisions. An individual may consult with their retirement provider and with their institution’s Office of Human Resources about available retirement options; however, UT Offices of Human Resources may only provide information about options and do not provide advice about an individual’s decision regarding whether to purchase retirement time
Faculty employed during the 2014-2015 academic year pursuant to the VSIP will be subject to the UT System Regents’ Rules and Regulations and their institution’s Handbook of Operating Procedures. Those policies and procedures, including those relating to the rights and responsibilities of faculty and the faculty grievance policy, will be applicable to faculty during that academic year.
Yes. Faculty who enter into the Voluntary Separation Agreement will be paid their 2014-2015 salary over the nine month academic year.
We have recognized that the rise in the number of answers sought has strained our approach and a few weeks ago began to explore ways to make finding a particular answer easier. (We had more than 70 questions last week alone) Thank you for your ideas; they will be taken into mix of solutions. Expect to see a revamped approach to addressing questions and answers very soon.
Students currently enrolled at UTPA and UTB, following a degree plan from those institutions, will be able to finish those same degree plans at UTRGV.
Yes, Dr. Bailey supports the TRIO programs.
Thank you for your advice and observations. UTRGV is committed to serving our veterans and will be working with our students to develop the most useful and convenient ways to meet their particular needs. A veterans liaison to focus on veterans needs will be part of the UTRGV administrative structure.
President Bailey will arrive and begin work onsite in the Valley after June 15th. The schedule for his meetings has not yet been created. Faculty meetings will certainly be held and the dates and times will be published through the usual campus communications media.
A staff hiring policy has not yet been finalized. It is anticipated that all staff, including staff on grant funding, will be required to reapply. The transition implementation process will have a plan for as seamless a continuation of services as possible.
The UTRGV music programs have already been approved by the Board of Regents and will be offered when it commences its first classes in the fall 2015 semester. Where the particular classes will be located will be known by the end of January 2015, if not sooner, as a function of class scheduling.
The project schedule indicates that this information will be known by fall 2014.
The UTRGV Athletics Committee will be making a recommendation to the EVC OAA and Chancellor regarding whether football is a viable option at the new institution.
Because of the volume of information, details about the now 23 Function Groups will be found in the upcoming Special Advisor’s Newsletter, available on this website.
This has not yet been determined. Consultants and Project Management Groups are presently in the early stages of the organizational design of UTRGV. Once the organizational structure is known, how it will be deployed will be worked out and this will inform the programming of the headquarters.
It is true that UTB and UTPA staff who want to work at UTRGV will have to go through a hiring process, though we anticipate that the great majority of UTB and UTPA employees will be offered positions at UTRGV.
The hiring processes and guidelines for clinical faculty and staff of The University of Texas Health Sciences Center San Antonio (UTHSCSA) have not yet been finalized. It does take time to develop processes that facilitate the employment of as many faculty members and staff from the current institutions as is prudent and practical. However, we assure all staff and faculty members at the RAHC that information will be disseminated as soon as it is available.
The hiring processes and guidelines for clinical faculty have not yet been finalized. It does take time to develop processes that facilitate the employment of as many clinical faculty members from the current institutions as is prudent and practical. However, we assure all clinical faculty members that information will be disseminated as soon as it is available.
The new UTRGV administration is expected to be formed within the next few months. Until UTRGV is ready to assume all operations, interim presidents will be responsible for UTB and UTPA and will likely be announced in the next month or so.
More degree programs will be available at UTRGV than at either UT Brownsville or UT Pan American alone.
UTRGV will participate in the Federal TRIO programs. Decisions about how to use the resources for such programs now at UTB and UTPA have not been made.