Current Structure of the Employee Assembly
The current structure of the Employee Assembly is the result of a multi-year review and restructuring plan, which went into effect in the spring of 2015 (per EA R5.2015). The new representative structure allocated 29 voting seats based on the colleges, units, and affinity groups which existed at the time.
This was a significant departure from the original model, which was a much smaller assembly, (19 members: 6 representing Exempt Employees, 6 representing Non-Exempt employees, one representing NYS Agricultural Experiment Station at Geneva (now Cornell Agritech), and 6 representing “all employees, regardless of job classification or location.”)
In the ensuing five years, Cornell has expanded, adapted, combined, and created new colleges, units and affinity groups. In order to, “actively involve all segments of Cornell’s diverse employee population in the Assembly’s decision-making activities”, the current EA convened a Membership Task Force in the spring of 2020 to review and revise its charter. This Task Force met weekly for several months, heard from the staff community, met with key stakeholders, and at its meeting on August 3, 2020, introduced EA R2: Updating the EA Charter to Expand its Membership which aligns the assembly’s membership with current University structure to reflect a more comprehensive representation of the staff community.
Among other proposed changes, EA R2 expands the membership to 35 members; renames the seat for the School of Hotel Administration to the “Cornell SC Johnson College of Business (which will encompass all units within the College of Business); adds a seat for the School of Public Policy; adds affinity seats for BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) and “More Than 20 Years of Service”; and creates three “At-Large” seats for those candidates without clear Assembly representation.
PROCESS AND TIMELINE
This resolution was introduced, debated and tabled, with the anticipation that it will be brought to a vote of the assembly at a future meeting. In addition to the assembly’s internal processes, charter changes require the approval of the university president. This resolution, if and when passed and approved, would be implemented in time for the spring 2021 elections.