Santa Clara University

Staff Senate

Staff Senate Representative Expectations

The Staff Senate is the representative body for the Staff Assembly, which includes all Santa Clara University employees whose relationship to the university is primarily staff rather than faculty or student and who are not represented by a collective bargaining unit.

The Staff Senate exists in part to contribute to the growth and welfare of the staff and to promote a positive and supportive work environment. It is a recognized part of the University governance system that provides a forum for open communication among staff and between staff and administration. It is a consultative and deliberative body with authority to make recommendations on all matters which have a significant bearing on the working environment of the staff. It also serves as the official nominating body for staff appointments to administrative committees, and for other task forces and search committees.

In the past, the Senate has promoted the interest of the staff in a number of ways: sponsoring annual events such as the Staff Faire and the SCU Day of Service; promoting sustainability by advocating for a limited number of free parking permits for those who bike to work; sponsoring forums related to staff concerns; providing staff with opportunities for volunteer service; publishing the Staff newsletter; and much more.

The Staff Assembly is divided into 21 groups of departments based upon a "commonality of interest". For example, staff members in the Philosophy, Music and Physics departments are assigned to the Arts & Science group while staff in Undergraduate Admissions, Financial Aid and Student Records are assigned to the Student Administration group. Each group has one or more representatives depending upon the number of staff in the group. Senators are elected for a term of two years, and terms are renewable.

The Staff Senate meets on the third Thursday of each month from 11 a.m. to 12 noon. Representatives are expected to attend these meetings regularly and, if they cannot attend a particular meeting, to arrange for someone from their group to attend in their place.

Representatives are also encouraged to participate in Senate programs by serving on one of several committees: Event Planning, Communications, Volunteer Service, Elections, etc. 

As to the time commitment, some representatives simply attend the single monthly meeting while a representative on a committee should expect to devote perhaps four or five hours a month to Senate business. 

The Staff Senate provides a valuable service to the SCU staff. Please participate by nominating yourself or someone in your group who you feel will contribute positively.

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