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State University of New York at Buffalo. Faculty Senate


Historical Note

University Senate

The University Senate was created in October 1923 by action of the Council. It was reorganized in 1931, and met sporadically during its existence (1923-1955), sometimes meeting annually, and sometimes not at all for years. It consisted of principal administrative officers and three elected members from each school or college. Charged the Council: “It shall be the duty of the University Senate to consider general educational questions and policies affecting the whole University or affecting more than one administrative division of the University and to make recommendations thereon to the Council and to the several faculties. The Senate shall have power to adopt bylaws subject to the approval of the Council.”

From 1923 to 1932, the Senate had numerous, apparently ad-hoc, committees working on University affairs. Problems reported included graduate work, student conduct, combined degrees, and the evening session. From 1939 to 1942, the Senate again actively studied University problems, and issued reports on faculty tenure, graduate work, annuities and insurance, and budget review by faculty. The last meeting of the Senate for which there are minutes is May 29, 1942. It did not meet again until 1955 when it was revived as the Faculty Senate.

Faculty Senate

The Charter of the Faculty Senate outlines the organization’s powers and duties. These include representation of the faculty concerning promotion and tenure, conduct and evaluation of research and teaching, freedom of speech, undergraduate admission standards and degree requirements and review of degree programs, etc. The complete charter is online at

Faculty Senate is part of SUNY shared governance. “Within SUNY, the system of shared governance occurs among a multiplicity of groups across many different pathways:

1. The relationship between and among governing boards, the Chancellor and campus presidents

2. The system-wide governance organizations with representatives from SUNY campuses

3. The governance organizations, which may be faculty-only, professional staff-only, college-wide, or student governance groups on each campus.”*

At UB, there are “five pillars of shared governance:” Faculty Senate, Professional Staff Senate, Student organizations, Office of the President and Office of the Provost, UB Council and Alumni Association.

*”Resolution of the Faculty Senate and Professional Staff Senate to Jointly Adopt ‘The Office of University Shared Governance at UB Doctrine of Shared Governance,’” pp. 4. Online at

Found in 3 Collections and/or Records:

Faculty Senate files, Office of the President

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: 5-3-32

Files of the Faculty Senate of the University of Buffalo, 1923-1976, which were kept by the Office of the Chancellor/President. Files include by-laws; minutes; agendas; membership lists; reports from the Executive Committee and other committees; see also Record Group 12 for Faculty Senate materials.

Dates: 1923-1976

Judith Hopkins papers

 Series — Multiple Containers
Identifier: 13-10-1038

Papers document technical services librarian Judith Hopkins' university studies and career from 1956 to 2004. The collection includes research and writings, committee materials, manuals written by Judith Hopkins, and materials related to her time at the Ohio College Library Center, now called the Online Computer Library Center (OCLC).

Dates: 1956-2004

Jacob D. Hyman Additional papers

 Collection — Box 1-3
Identifier: 21-F-551

Papers of Jacob D. Hyman, lawyer and Dean of the University of Buffalo Law School, 1953-1964. Includes papers relating to Hyman's activities with the Citizen's Council on Human Relations and related civil rights activities in the Buffalo area.

Dates: 1948-1979
Additional filters:
Academic librarians -- United States 1
Academic libraries -- United States -- Automation 1
Affirmative action programs -- Buffalo, N.Y. 1
Authority files (Information retrieval) -- Electronic discussion groups 1
Catalogers -- Education -- United States 1