The CNHP’s guiding principles and commitments are derived from Regent Laws and Policies governing the University of Colorado community, establishing that diversity, equity, and inclusion; nondiscrimination; and academic freedom are co-existent guiding principles and fundamental values.

Specifically, Regent Policy 1.B. “Guiding Principles” #6 provides that:

consistent with the legal obligations and responsibilities of the University of Colorado community, the university will ensure policies, programs, procedures, and practices promote a continuing commitment to building a community of faculty, students, and staff in which diversity is a fundamental value. Such policies, programs, and procedures will also serve to ensure the rich interchange of ideas in the pursuit of truth and learning, including diversity of political, geographic, cultural, intellectual, and philosophical perspectives. 

In Regent Policy 10A: “Diversity, Equity and Inclusion”, the University of Colorado Board of Regents “reaffirmed its absolute commitment to the promotion of diversity in the university community and insists that no individual or group shall be marginalized or systemically excluded. ” The definition of “diversity” from Regent Policy 10A recognizes a broad range of individual differences and does not create preferences for particular types of diversity, referring to “diversity” as “the representation of our university community members who hold individual differences such as life experiences, and group/social differences such as race and ethnicity or class, protected identities as recognized in regent law, as well as cultural, political, geographical, religious, or other affiliations.”

In addressing the conduct of the members of the university community, Regent Law Article 8, Part A provides that, “The University of Colorado does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, pregnancy, age, disability, creed, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, veteran status, marital status, political affiliation, or political philosophy in admission and access to, and treatment and employment in, its educational programs and activities.”

Regent Policy 5.B.1 establishes associated rights of faculty academic freedom providing, “[t]he best method for advancing the state of knowledge is engaging with the broadest range of theories, methodologies, data, and conflicting opinions” and requires that, “[t]he appointment, reappointment, promotion of all faculty, and award of tenure to tenure-track faculty, shall not be awarded or denied based on extrinsic considerations such as a faculty member’s expression of political, social, or religious views.”

These concepts and others are incorporated within the Academic Affairs website devoted to academic freedom.

Over the next three years, funding for the CNHP will provide ~$1M in salary + benefits to be allocated across 32 centrally funded faculty positions (up to $100K in salary + benefits per position). During the same period, to foster ownership of and commitment to the CNHP across all academic units, the schools and colleges are required to fund 48 critical needs faculty positions, pooled across all units, to be completed by FY 2027.

Deans may determine how best to meet their CN hiring objectives (e.g., two or more deans may ‘trade’ their assigned CN allocations to adjust timing or meet cluster hiring objectives), in alignment with the guiding principles above. To support the new faculty members, units agree to pay for all CN hires to participate in the National Center for Faculty Development and Diversity Faculty Success Program if they would like to.

Annually, every unit shall tender a detailed recruitment, mentoring, and retention plan to the Office of Faculty Affairs for CN positions in conjunction with the Recruitment Authorization Form (RAF) submitted to the Office of the Provost (CN centrally funded positions should indicate this on the RAF). In addition, CN positions will be included in the annual recruitment and search status reports submitted to the Office of the Provost.

Based on a consideration of current faculty sizes, credit hour generation, and enrollments in each school and college, the proposed allocation of CN positions to each school and college is as follows:

  FY24 FY25 FY26 Allocation
A&S 3 3 8 14
CEAS 4 3 1 8
CMCI#   2   2
Leeds 2     2
Law     1 1
Music   1   1
Education   1   1
Libraries 1     1
RIO/Institutes 1 1   2
TOTAL 11 11 10 32

# Allocation estimate assumes a CMCI + ENVD aggregation

How is the Critical Needs Hiring Program different from the FDAP?

The CNHP will continue the funding support of $1M salary + benefits for TTT and teaching-track hires through the campus budget model (this has not changed). Units receiving these lines will rotate, but unlike the FDAP, OFA will no longer facilitate a competitive selection process in which an advisory committee would make recommendations to the provost regarding which units should be allocated these lines. Because the deans will lead the process moving forward, the deans and the provost have agreed which schools/colleges will have the opportunity to hire during which years (see the table above). Searches will be conducted in accordance with the primary unit process and following all relevant policies, including the guiding principles above, and legal requirements.

How do we define “Critical Needs”?

Faculty members who meet “Critical Needs” are those who demonstrate perspectives, life experiences, and expertise that are not (or are less) represented within the unit doing the hiring. Without such a diversity of perspectives, experiences, and expertise, the university cannot properly meet its academic or social missions. Research affirms the important educational and epistemic benefits of diversity for scholarly and creative work, research, teaching, leadership, and service.

How do we make a Critical Needs hire in alignment with the above guiding principles?

As indicated in the definition of Critical Needs, the process will consider and seek out those applicants who bring perspectives, life experiences, and expertise that are not (or are less) represented within the unit doing the hiring. The process should focus on an applicant’s demonstrated actions, not beliefs or identities. More specifically, the hiring can consider an applicant’s:

  • Demonstrated knowledge, such as pedagogical approach, about diversity, equity, and inclusion;
  • Track record, such as experience in the field, including service and committee work and research and scholarship, in advancing equity and inclusion;
  • Plans for advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion in their future work; and
  • Demonstrated ability to weave these concepts throughout their teaching and scholarly work.

Further, the units may engage in purposeful and directed outreach efforts to attract such applicants.

Who decides on the hiring process?

Schools and colleges, according to their normal processes.

What is the role of the central campus Office of Faculty Affairs (OFA) in the process?

Unlike with the FDAP, OFA has no formal role. However, the vice provost for faculty affairs is available to answer questions about the CNHP on behalf of the provost.

Where can I find campus resources on conducting searches?

All members of search committees and all evaluators are expected to follow campus guidance on searches and hires and to take the Conducting Inclusive Faculty Search Online Course. All faculty hiring committee members shall adopt inclusive practices concerning the faculty hiring process as outlined in the online course, manual and guidebooks found on CU Boulder’s Department of Human Resources Diversity Search and Hiring website. Among other things, this website provides resources regarding recruitment, outreach, advertising, evaluating applicants, interviews, and hiring decisions. Hiring committees shall seek advice from the campus affirmative action officer regarding the search and hiring process.