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Campus News
     
Your faculty and staff news since 1965
Current Issue: October 28, 2002
Volume 38, Number 8

Human Resources
Department responds to degree requirement concerns

By Susan A. Carkeek, Associate Vice President and Director, Human Resources

A resounding call from constituencies across the University to remove what many feel are artificial degree requirements for certain UNM positions has been heard.

For the past two years, the Department of Human Resources reviewed the issue and solicited feedback from different campus constituency groups, including the HR Network, HR Advisory Committee and Staff Council.

A survey of the HR Network pointed to administrative/management jobs as those of most concern. I am pleased to announce that HR has initiated a pilot project that we hope responds to these concerns.

The pilot project will begin with the job titles most frequently identified in our conversations with the campus community. Those are: Administrator (Group), Assistant to the President, Assistant to the Provost, Asst. to the Vice President, Clinical Dept. Admin. I, Clinical Dept. Admin. II, Clinical Dept. Admin. III, Dept Admin. I, Dept Admin. II, Dept. Admin. III, Executive Assistant/Branch, Office Admin., Office Manager, Operations Manager, Program Coordinator, Program Manager and Unit Administrator.

There are two parts to the pilot project. Part one has been to reevaluate the minimum qualifications for these positions. The second component of the pilot project was to develop a Management Academy to assist staff in attaining qualifications necessary to be competitive for these positions.

Human Resources completed an in-depth review of duties and responsibilities for these jobs titles and determined that instead of requiring a “generic” (i.e., not discipline specific) degree, a more appropriate minimum qualification would be specific management skills. These skills can be acquired through previous experience or completion of an in-house management training program (see article on the Management Academy).

Effective January 2003, the new minimum qualification for the positions in the pilot project will be two years of directly-related management experience or successful completion of UNM’s Management Academy.

For jobs where an educational credential is considered beneficial, but not required, then a degree can be listed as a “preferred” or desirable qualification.

Staff who have been “grandparented” into these pilot positions since UNMpact should meet the experience criteria of the new minimum qualifications. However, they are still welcome to participate in the Management Academy.

In addition, Human Resources has reevaluated and eliminated the degree requirement for many other staff jobs in fields such as information technology, research support, facilities management, to name a few. Job descriptions can be reviewed on the web at http://jobdescriptions.unm.edu/jdeweb.cfm

Because this is a pilot project, after a full year of implementation, HR will evaluate effectiveness. An opportunity to provide feedback will be provided.