As worked time for salaried employees are not reported and submitted biweekly for processing and payroll payment, the Office of Human Resources needs to be notified immediately when a salaried employee is terminating his/her employment. Please send a letter or e-mail to the Employment Office with their last date of employment.To ensure accurate employee and effective date records, it is important that exiting employees complete the exit process when they leave Andrews University. They must complete an Exit Prodedure Form which documents that applicable university departments have authorized clearance for the processing of the employee's separation. The form must be submitted to the Office Human Resources as soon after the last day of work. Additionally, this form initiates the farewell check process if the employee has worked at Andrews University for at least two years.

Please also review the information below from the Andrews University Working Policy section E, 2:170 through 2:182,

E. Termination of a Faculty Member's Employment

Usual Occasions for Service Terminations (2:170)
The termination of a continuous appointment or non-continuous appointment faculty member's employment at the university takes place at any of the following times:
  1. when the faculty member enters full retirement
  2. when the faculty member's resignation becomes effective
  3. when the faculty member's transfer to another entity of denominational employment becomes effective
  4. when a contract for service is allowed to expire without renewal
  5. when a faculty member is dismissed on the basis of his/her professional fitness before the end of the contracted period of time (dismissal).
  6. when a faculty member's service is terminated for reasons unrelated to the professional fitness of a faculty member before the end of the contracted period of time (separation).
Adequate Notice for Termination of Service (2:172)
In order to protect the integrity and continuity of the academic programs of the university, notice for the termination of a faculty member's service for any of the reasons outlined in policy #2:170 a-c should wherever possible be negotiated in writing by both the faculty member and the institution at least three months prior to the effect date. (For exceptions see policy #s 2:135:1, 2:172:2, 2:172:3, and 2:180:9.)

Notice Retirements/Resignations/Transfers (2:172:1)

Written notice from a faculty member with respect to:
  1. a request for retirement
  2. a resignation
  3. a transfer to another denominational entity
should reach the dean of a given school with copies to the president and vice-president of academic administration at least three months prior to the effective date. The appropriate annual time for such letters is April 1 of the last academic year in which a teacher intends to serve. Other dates may also be considered provided the three month lead-time concept is maintained. Where not enough lead-time is allowed, a teacher may be obligated to continue teaching until a mutually agreeable date can by negotiated.

Resignations are ordinarily effective at the end of spring term or at the end of a quarter; i.e. normally ten days after the last scheduled examination at the end of a term, plus vacation time due a faculty member.

Notice of Non-renewal of Service Contracts (2:172:2)

Since the non-renewal of a faculty member's contract amounts to the termination of that faculty member's service, written notice of such non-renewal shall be given in adequate time (see policy #2:135:1 for details).

Notice of Termination of a Contract Before the Due Date (Dismissal) (2:172:3)

Andrews University may for "adequate cause" under certain circumstances, terminate a faculty member's service before a given contract expires (see policy #2:175 for details), or for "adequate cause" terminate the services of a faculty member who is on continuous appointment (see policy #2:175 for further details).

Terminating the services of a faculty member who is on continuous appointment or a non-continuous appointment faculty member before his/her contract expires requires a particular procedure followed by a termination notice as described in policy #2:180. The termination note under such circumstances should be made in good time prior to the effective date (for details see policy #2:180:9).
"Adequate Cause" for Terminating the Service of a Faculty Member (2:175)
"Adequate cause" for the termination of a faculty member's services (also referred to as dismissal or separation of a teacher) is related to either:
  1. the ability of institution to finance its operation (finance exigency),
  2. the discontinuance of a program, or
  3. directly and substantially the fitness of the faculty member in his/her professional capacity as teacher/researcher or librarian
If the termination of a faculty member's contract before the date of expiration is for cause as listed in (a) and (b) above, it is referred to as a "separation of a faculty member." Where the termination of a faculty member's contract before the due date is for cause as listed in (c) above, it shall be referred to as a "dismissal of a faculty member." The various elements of "adequate cause" are further described below as policy #s 2:175:1-3.

"Adequate cause" shall not include an attempt to restrain a faculty member from exercising his/her academic freedom or other rights as an American citizen. Termination for cause as described in (a) and (b) above shall be eligible for due process procedures by way of the "grievance process" (see policy #2:160). Termination for cause as outlined in (c) above should follow the due process procedures outlined in policy #2:180:1-9.

Financial Reasons or Program Discontinuance (2:175:1)

Where the separation of a person on continuous appointment, or one without continuous appointment before the end of a specified term, is based upon bona fide declared financial exigency or discontinuance of a program or department of instruction, regular termination procedures will not apply. A faculty member shall, however, be able to have the issues reviewed by the Grievance Committee of a given school (see policy #1:620:4), with ultimate decision by the Board of Trustees on the recommendation of the president. In every case of financial exigency or discontinuance of a program or a department of instruction, the faculty member concerned will be given notice as soon as possible, preferably not less than twelve (12) months notice, but never less than is outlined in policy #2:180:9. The provision of salary in lieu of notice as outlined in policy #2:180:9 shall also apply here.

Before terminating an appointment because of the abandonment of a program or department of instruction, the university will make every effort to place affected faculty members in other suitable positions (see policy #2:161). If an appointment is terminated before the end of a period of appointment, because of financial exigency or because of the discontinuance of a program of instruction, the released faculty member's place will not be filled by a replacement within a period of two years unless the released faculty member has been offered reappointment and a reasonable time within which to accept or decline it.

Medical Reasons (2:175:2)

Separation of a faculty member with either continuous or non-continuous appointment for medical reasons before the end of the specified term, will be based upon clear and convincing medical evidence. The decision to separate will be reached only after there has been appropriate consultation and the faculty member or his/her representative has been informed of the basis of the proposed action, and has been afforded the opportunity to present his/her response prior to review of the evidence by the president. If the faculty member so requests, the evidence will be reviewed by the grievance committee of a given school before a final decision is made by the Board of Trustees on the recommendation of the president of the university. The faculty member will be given notice and/or salary not less than is prescribed by policy #2:180:9.

Fitness of Faculty Member in Professional Capacity (2:175:3)

Dismissal of a faculty member before the end of a specified term and deemed not to be fit in his/her professional capacity can result from:
  1. Gross and inexcusable incompetence (defined by the New York University Law Review Study, 1979, pp. 840-891) as "a state of inability arising from a lack of talent, intelligence, training, motivation, or professionalism. Incompetence encompasses a teacher's classroom demeanor, teaching methods, physical ability, and ability to maintain an environment conducive to learning."
  2. Neglect of established obligations/misconduct (such as excessive outside work, frequent absences from class faculty committees, faculty meetings, or missing other official appointments, deliberate non-compliance to institutional policy requirements, boycotting specific official university events, keeping inadequate office hours and thus being unavailable to student advisees, frequent tardiness or failure to file required reports, grades or other agreements, failure to advise students adequately).
  3. Moral turpitude such as academic dishonesty in teaching and research/plagiarism (see policy #2:187), vulgarity, sexual harassment or misconduct.
  4. Repudiation or defiance of the standards and teachings of the Seventh-day Adventist Church as contained in the statement of "Fundamental Beliefs."
  5. Persistence in teaching or activities which by their opposition to those doctrines and standards threaten the viability of the university as an institution of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. Notwithstanding the above, this shall not preclude fair academic discussion.
(See also policy #s 2:800 and 2:801 which specifically deal with theological and academic freedom concerns in Seventh-day Adventist institutions.)

Dismissal of a faculty member for reasons outlined here in policy #2:175:3 can only be implemented according to the due process procedures and conditions outlined in policy #2:180 below.
Separation Procedures for a Faculty Member Before Contract Expiration (2:180)
Dismissal of a faculty member with continuous appointment, or with a contractual appointment before the end of the specified term, may take place only after the following procedural steps listed below and involving peers had been following in an attempt to solve the problem. These procedures have been selected at Andrews University to give effect to both faculty employment rights and the obligations of faculty members within the academic community.

In understanding and agreement on the several functions of trustee and faculty in determining who shall join and who shall remain on the faculty, members of the faculty shall undertake to be willing to participate in the prescribed dismissal procedures (either as judges or as accused) in a manner that will safeguard institutional integrity and individual human rights.

The faculty of a university is directly involved in determining its own membership by way of both the appointments to and in separation from the faculty, reappointments, non-reappointments, promotions and assignment of the continuous appointment status. As such, they are asked as a matter of course to participate in the dismissed processes outlined below.

Step 1—Informal Assessment of Problem (2:180:1)

When complaints reflecting on the professional suitability of a faculty member are received by his/her superiors reaching all the way to the president, the vice president for academic administration shall be asked by the president to make an informal inquiry and instruct appropriate administrators and the faculty member concerned to try and settle the problems and render a written report on the status of the problem and the existence of documentation on the same. If the report from the vice president for academic administration should reveal that the problem has been settled and the president concurs, no further steps will be taken.

Step 2—Informal Inquiry by Committee (2:180:2)

Should the informal report from the vice president for academic administration to the president reveal that the problem is serious, has not been solved and needs further attention, the vice president for academic administration shall, by mutual agreement with the relevant faculty member and administrators, appoint an "ad hoc" Committee of Inquiry of three persons uninvolved in the case with two alternates selected as reserves. Alternate members of the committee shall only serve when regular members are unable to participate. The terms of reference of the "ad hoc" committee shall be to attempt to effect an adjustment or reconciliation, and to report confidentially on the problem with recommendations whether dismissal procedures should be undertaken or not. The committee's opinion will not be binding. Should the president receive a report from the vice president for academic administration that the problem cannot be resolved without considering dismissal, the next step (Step 3) will be taken. No further action is taken if the president agrees that the problem was resolved or can be resolved without dismissal considerations. The report of the Committee of Inquiry will be made to the president only.

Step 3—Formulation of Charges (2:180:3)

Upon the basis of the findings of the "ad hoc" Committee of Inquiry and their recommendations, the vice president for academic administration shall, at the request of the president and with reasonable particularity, formulate a statement of charges either by himself or with the help of the committee, to be passed on to the president for review and action. The statement of charges will be given to the president for action, after the department chair and dean of the relevant school have been informed of the steps being anticipated.

Step 4—Letter to Faculty Member Concerned (2:180:4)

Should the president to institute formal dismissal procedures against the faculty member, he shall inform the faculty member of:
  • Specific charges against the faculty member
  • The procedural rights according him/her during a hearing, by reference to published regulations
  • His/Her right to a personal interview with the president prior to responding officially to the charges.
  • His/her right to appeal to the president in writing for a hearing by a Hearing Committee of peers. The letter of appeal is to reach the president within ten (10) working days from the date of the president's letter.
  • His/Her obligation to submit to the president and the Hearing Committee a written response to the charges leveled against him/her and, furthermore, that the written response to the charges reach the president and the Hearing Committee no less than five (5) working days before the date scheduled for the pre-hearing. (See date for pre-hearing in policy #2:180:5.)
It should be noted that the written charges against a faculty member cannot be charged or added to once they have been formulated and conveyed in writing to the faculty member by the president.

Step 5—Appointment of Hearing Committee (2:180:5)

Immediately after the president has received a request from the accused faculty member for a faculty committee hearing, the president shall ask the chair of the Andrews University Senate to call a meeting of all the full professors of the University (except the accused professor if he/she qualifies) to elect a Hearing Committee of five (5) full professors and two (2) alternates. An alternate member serves on the Hearing Committee when a regular member is unable to do so after having been appointed. The members should be selected on the basis of their objectivity, competence, and regard in which they are held in the academic community.

During the selection of members for the Hearing Committee, professors deemed disqualified for bias or interest or any previous involvement in the case, shall remove themselves from membership in the Hearing Committee either at their own initiative or at the request of a party.

At the first meeting of the Hearing Committee, any or all of the principals in the case of their official representatives may challenge the suitability of a particular Hearing Committee member to serve without bias or interest. Such preemptory challenges shall be limited to two (2) for each of the principals. In such an event alternate members shall replace the regular members of the Hearing Committee.

On the same day after the Hearing Committee has been selected, it shall meet and decide on a date, time and place for its official first meeting prior to the official pre-hearing (see policy #2:180:7b) and of the actual hearing (see policy #2:180:5:7a, and c) of the case.

After the appointment of the hearing committee, it shall be granted twenty-five (25) working days (unless extended by mutual agreement by the accused and the president) within which to conduct a hearing and render a written report to the president. The hearing shall not be open to the public and shall consider only the specific charges leveled in writing against the faculty member by the president as well as the responses to those.

If the faculty member waives a hearing, but denies the charges or asserts that the charges do not support a finding of "adequate cause," the committee will consider the case on the basis of the obtainable information such as the charges and the written response and decide whether to recommend dismissal (see a of policy #2:180:7).

Step 6—Suspension of Reassignment of Faculty Member (2:180:6)

Pending a final decision by the hearing committee, the faculty member will be suspended, or assigned to other duties in lieu of suspension, only if immediate harm to him/herself or others is threatened by his/her continuance. Suspension can be instituted by the president without prior Board of Trustees' approval. Any such suspension will be with pay unless legal considerations forbid.

A suspension which is intended to be final is tantamount to a dismissal and will be treated as such (as a summary dismissal without an opportunity for a hearing and therefore a violation of academic due process).

Step 7—Hearing Committee Procedures (2:180:7)
  1. At its first meeting and prior to the official hearing of the case, the committee will deliberate on the procedural needs of the case including pre-hearings, as well as the merits of a case for instances where a faculty member has waived a hearing but denies a finding of "adequate cause" (see policy #2:180:5).

    After this a hearing date shall be set to be about fifteen (15) working days from the time that the committee was appointed by the president.
  2. The Hearing Committee may, prior to the hearing and with the consent of the parties considered, hold joint pre-hearing meetings with the parties in order to:
    1. simplify the issues
    2. effect stipulations of the facts
    3. provide for the exchange of documentary or other information, and
    4. achieve such other appropriate pre-hearing objectives as will make the hearing fair, effective and expeditious.
    Pre hearing meetings (if any) shall be scheduled from ten (10) to fourteen (14) working days from the time that the Hearing Committee was appointed by the president. Pre-hearing meetings can only be held once the accuse faculty member's rebuttal has been received by the president and the Hearing Committee.
  3. Service of notice of the hearing will be made to the faculty member and the president at least ten (10) working days prior to the hearing.
  4. During the hearing, the faculty member will be permitted to have a colleague of his/her choice as an advisor and counsel. The president of his designee shall also be entitled to attend the hearing. Neither party shall be represented by legal counsel at the hearing. The chair of the hearing committee shall set the order of argument and of presentation of evidence and may go into executive session at any time during the hearing to consult among themselves. An executive session shall mean that only the members of the hearing committee shall meet without the principals or witnesses present.
  5. The chair shall, in consultation with the vice president for academic administration, arrange for the keeping of a full stenographic or taped record of the hearing phase of the grievance procedure. A copy of the report will upon request be made available to the hearing committee members, the president and the accused faculty member without cost. (A record of executive sessions or the deliberative phase of the grievance process will not be kept or made available to anyone. During that phase members of the committee are expected to keep their own notes and the principals in the case are not present, see also policy #2:180:7 d and l.
  6. The burden of proof that adequate cause exists rests with the institution and shall be satisfied only by clear and convincing evidence in the record considered as a whole.
  7. The hearing committee will grant adjournments to enable either party to investigate evidence as to which a valid claim of surprise is made. The Hearing Committee may also adjourn to go into executive session any time that it deems appropriate. As indicated in policy #2:180:7 (d), (e), and (l), the principals in the case are at such times excluded from the deliberations of the committee.
  8. The faculty member will be afforded an opportunity to obtain necessary witnesses and documentary or other evidence. The administration will cooperate with the hearing committee in securing witnesses and making available documentary and other evidence.
  9. The faculty member and the administration will have the right to confront and cross-examine all witnesses. Where the witness cannot or will not appear, but the committee determines that the interest of justice requires admission of their statements, the committee will identify the witnesses, disclose their statements, and if possible provide for interrogatories.
  10. In hearings of charges of incompetence (see policy #2:175:3a), the testimony shall include that of qualified faculty members of this or other institutions of higher education.
  11. The hearing committee will not be bound by strict rules of legal evidence which is of probative value in determining the issues involved. Every possible effort will be made to obtain the most reliable evidence available.
  12. When the hearing has been completed the committee will go into executive session privately without the principals present to reach its verdict. The findings of fact and the decision will be based solely on the hearing record. The verdict should be reached and conveyed to the president and the faculty member within five (5) working days after the hearing has been concluded. The actual hearing time and rendering of a written verdict should be concluded within a period of twenty-five (25) working days (see policy #2:180:5).
  13. Except as such simple announcements as may be required covering the time of the hearing and similar matters, public statements and publicity about the case by either the faculty member or the administrative officers will be avoided so far as possible until the proceedings have been completed, including consideration by the Board of Trustees.
  14. The stenographic or taped record of the hearing (see policy #2:180:7e above) shall at this time be submitted to the office of the vice president for academic administration where it shall be kept for at least five years in the faculty member's file.
  15. If the hearing committee concludes that adequate cause for dismissal has not been establish by the evidence in the record, it will so report to the president. If the president rejects the report, he/she will state his/her reasons for doing so in writing to the hearing committee and to the faculty member within five (5) working days and provide an opportunity for response before transmitting his/her recommendation to the Board of Trustees. The president's final decision shall be made known prior to making a recommendation to the Board of Trustees.
  16. If the hearing committee concludes that adequate cause for a dismissal has been established, but that a major academic penalty less than dismissal, such as suspension from service without pay for a period of time or a minor sanction such as a reprimand would be more appropriate, it will be so recommended by the hearing committee with supporting reasons.

Step 8—Action by the Board of Trustees (2:180:8)

If the dismissal or other severe sanction is recommended by either the president or the hearing committee or both, the president will transmit to the Board of Trustees the written report of the hearing committee and the complete record of the case. The Board of Trustees' review will be based upon the written report and the complete record of the hearing committee with provision for argument, oral or written or both, by the principals at the hearings of the Board of Trustees or by their representatives (legal counsel excluded). The faculty member has a right to appeal to the Board of Trustees to be heard by them in person accompanied by a friend as witness.

The decision of the hearing committee and/or the president will generally either be sustained, or the proceeding returned to the hearing committee or the president with specific objections. The hearing committee will on review of the case reconsider, taking into account the stated objections and receiving new evidence if necessary. Only after study and report of the committee's reconsideration, should the Board of Trustees make a final decision either to sustain or reject the decision of the president and/or the committee.

Step 9—Terminal Salary or Notice of Termination (2:180:9)

If the appointment is terminated, the faculty member will receive adequate notice of separation (see schedule below) or notice of immediate separation with salary in lieu of notice of separation in accordance with the following schedule:
  • at least three (3) months, (or three months prior to the expiration of the contract) for faculty on one- (1) or two- (2) year contracts
  • at least six (6) months, (or six months prior to the expiration of the contract) for faculty on three- (3) to five- (5) year contracts
  • at least twelve (12) months, if the decision involves a faculty member on continuous appointment
This provision for termination notice or salary need not apply in the event that there has been a finding that justification for dismissal was for cause, such as moral turpitude, gross neglect of duty, or repudiation or defiance of the standards and the teachings of the Seventh-day Adventist church as contained in the statement of "Fundamental Beliefs." On the recommendation of the president and/or the faculty hearing committee, the governing board, in determining what if any payments will be made beyond the effective date of dismissal, may also take into account the length and quality of service of the faculty member.
Terminal Interview (2:181)
On the termination of the employment of a faculty member at Andrews University for any reason, the faculty member concerned shall present himself/herself to the Director of Human Resources for a terminal interview on the last day of his/her employment. The purpose of the terminal interview shall be to do the following:
  1. Return the faculty member's University identification card (ID), hospitalization insurance, telephone credit card, classroom/office/building keys and copy of the Andrews University Working Policy.
  2. Record the reasons for terminating his/her employment at Andrews University and other matters of mutual interest.
  3. Ensure that any accrued benefits to which the faculty member is entitled to will be cared for.
Ombudsperson (2:182)
The ombudsperson is an intervention agent and impartial person available to help students, staff, and faculty resolve any complex problem which remains unsolved after the student, staff of faculty member has followed normal channels for handling such matters or has encountered an obstacle in doing so. The ombudsperson is authorized to have access to all university offices and relevent records when assisting in the resolution of questions pertaining to students, staff and faculty. The ombudsperson will advise the student, staff or faculty member on further steps to take, negotiate a solution, or find out the reasons why the problem is insoluble and help the concerned individual to understand and relate better. No student, staff or faculty member shall suffer any penalty because of seeking assistance from the ombudsperson, and all information presented to him/her by persons seeking assistance shall be considered confidential.

The ombudsperson is alert to the chief causes for student, staff, and faculty concerns and is expected to make recommendations, consistent with the fundamental purposes of the university, to the president for elimination of these causes. (See also policy #s 2:685 and 3:294.)

The basic working principals of the University ombudsperson are independence, impartiality and confidentiality. The ombudsperson is appointed by and reports directly to the president (see Figure 1-1). An ombudsperson is appointed for a term of three (3) years which may be reviewed by the president.