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Candidate Biography

Interinstitutional Faculty Senate Candidate

VICKI TOLAR BURTON (at OSU since 1993), Associate Professor of English and Director of the Writing Intensive Curriculum Program, College of Liberal Arts.

FACULTY SENATE SERVICE: Liberal Arts Senator, 2000-02 and 1996-99; Executive Committee, 1999-01; Administrative Appointments Committee, 1999-00; Curriculum Council, 1996-99; Baccalaureate Core Committee, 1993 to present (ex-officio); and University Writing Advisory Board, 1993 to present (Chair).

COLLEGE OF LIBERAL ARTS SERVICE: Budget Committee, 2003 to present; Curriculum Committee, 1995-97 (Chair 1995-96); and Faculty Council, 1995-96.

OTHER UNIVERSITY SERVICE: Planning Group for Oregon Proficiency-Based Admissions Standards System, 2002 and 1994-97 (OSU representative); Undergraduate Admissions Criteria Issue Group, 2000-01 (Co-Chair); Mortar Board Senior Honor Society, 1994-98 (Advisor); and Linn-Benton Community College Department of English and Foreign Language, 1993-00 (Advisory Board).

SEARCH COMMITTEES: Provost, 1999, and English Department Search Committees.

Candidate Statement: I believe strongly that faculty governance and faculty voice are crucial to the quality of Oregon higher education. The IFS speaks for university faculties to the OUS Board, Legislature, and citizens of Oregon. I am eager to represent OSU faculty at the state level and work with other university representatives on your behalf. My experience working with faculty and programs across the curriculum has given me a clear understanding of institutional issues and problems and knowledge of how OSU faculty research, teaching, and service benefit Oregon. Our message: Faculty are an Oregon resource contributing to state productivity, progress, and self-understanding.

Over the next two years, what critical issues for faculty will be best addressed through IFS and how can you help move those issues forward on their behalf?

The key issues facing IFS are maintaining a viable budget for quality education, managing university enrollment, and advocating for faculty salaries, benefits, and jobs. The state has to come to terms with the fact that continually reduced budgets for higher education force difficult decisions about growth of universities and access to higher education. Faculty must be involved at the highest levels in the quest to maintain quality in the face of rising enrollments and other budget pressures. There are real classroom consequences of reducing resources and raising class size. Easy answers from above like, "We have to learn to do more with less" are sound bites, not solutions. I consider university faculty to be a resource that the state cannot afford to lose or take for granted. I will study the complex issues surrounding state budgets, PERS, salaries, and benefits and speak out for faculty interests and for the stake the citizens of Oregon have in a quality university system. I believe it is also to our advantage to seek common ground with university students on as many issues as possible. We form a stronger coalition together than either faculty or students can generate on their own, and many of our interests are the same. These key issues of financing quality education, enrollment management, and salaries and benefits are critical to OSU's sustainability, and I will thoughtfully and articulately take these issues to the IFS, the OUS Board, the Legislature, and the State.