Policy on Faculty Membership

I. Membership Criteria

All new members must provide a current curriculum vitae to the Faculty Status Committee. A short (20-30 minute) seminar is required, but may be waived by the committee. Each application is voted on by the Faculty Status Committee and the full GPN faculty.

Senior Membership

Senior Members are entitled to serve as primary advisor for doctoral students, to serve on doctoral committees, including chair of such committees, to teach graduate courses in Neuroscience, and to participate in governance. Senior faculty appointments are based on two major criteria: (1) that the applicant's research program addresses issues of interest to neuroscientists and (2) that the applicant is an independent investigator.

With respect to criterion (1), each applicant for Senior Membership must demonstrate that students trained in his/her laboratory will be recognized as neuroscientists, that their research into the nervous system will be published in peer-reviewed journals and that presentations by laboratory researchers will be made at neuroscience meetings.

With respect to criterion (2), each applicant must demonstrate his/her independence and continuing productivity by (i) holding a full time faculty appointment at the University, (ii) having had an active research program within the past 5 years, i.e. serving as principal investigator (or project PI) on a project from nationally recognized granting agencies such as the NIH, NSF, and VA Merit Review, and (iii) having published peer-reviewed articles in nationally recognized scientific journals. The relative importance and application of each of the criteria above will be assessed by the Faculty Status Committee on an individual basis.

Tenure-track Assistant Professors who have published in neuroscience journals are automatically entitled to join as Senior Members.

Reappointment to the Faculty

The membership status of all neuroscience faculty members will be reviewed at five-year intervals. The criteria for reappointment are the same as those for initial appointment. In addition, service to the Graduate Program such as student advisor, teacher, committee member, DGS, participation in recruitment activities, Brain Awareness Week, and BrainU, etc. (see GPN faculty handbook for more complete listing of opportunities for service) will be a major factor in the decision to reappoint at the Senior Membership level. It is unlikely that members who do not perform service to the GPN will be renewed as Senior Members. Finally, it is required for reappointment that all members give a talk in the Colloquium series during their appointment.

II. Policy on Applications for Membership/Reappointment

A. Eligibility for Membership/Reappointment will be based on a short application. Pages 1-3 will be prepared by the applicant.

  1. Summary of the applicant's educational and professional history, including specific information about tenure status, assigned laboratory space, Neuroscience doctoral student mentoring, and past and present service to the program.
  2. Summary of the applicant's grant history, emphasizing nationally competitive grants awarded during the preceding five years.
  3. Listing of the applicant's publications in peer-reviewed journals during the previous five years.
  4. Completion of mentor training module  https://www.ctsi.umn.edu/education-and-training/mentoring/mentor-training

B. Faculty Status Committee (FSC) Process for New Members:

  1. Chair gives approval to give seminar, and has the authority to deny a talk.
  2. Seminar scheduled by GPN staff
  3. The FSC members are sent the CV.
  4. Applicant gives seminar which FSC members are encouraged to attend.
  5. Following the seminar the FSC members are requested via email to vote on membership. Members will be allowed 10 days to respond to this request and will be given one reminder during this period. Lack of response will be recorded as an abstention.
  6. In addition to indicating their vote for or against membership, all FSC members will provide a short rationale (2-3 sentences) for their decision. For example, “Jane Doe is qualified for membership because she does wonderful work, is president of the Society for Neuroscience, and has just been elected to the National Academy. Alternatively, “I oppose John Doe because he has published only one paper (on meta-cognition in the fly) in the past five years in a journal with an impact factor of less than 1.”
  7. A valid vote requires responses from ¾ of the committee members. The outcome of the vote will be binding if it is supported by ¾ of those who participate in a valid vote. If the outcome of the vote is not binding then all the senior members of the GPN will asked to vote on the matter after considering the comments of the FSC members; a simple majority vote among the senior faculty will be binding.

C. Faculty Status Committee (FSC) Process for Reappointments:

  1. Upon receipt of reappointment materials, send CV to FSC
  2. Voting procedures will be identical to those outlined in 5-7 above