UND Today

University of North Dakota’s Official News Source

VIDEO: Faculty & Staff Town Hall

President Armacost, UND administrators answer questions about employee benefits, North Dakota’s legislative session and more

Editor’s note: On Tuesday, Jan. 24, UND held a Town Hall meeting via Zoom for faculty and staff. A video of the Town Hall (with closed captions available) is above, while below is a list of the questions that are asked and answered in the video, with time stamps for readers’ reference accompanying each question.

The following questions are asked and answered in the Faculty & Staff Town Hall:

09:35: HB 1446 – a bill that would affect tenure – is currently written as a pilot; but Steve Easton, president of Dickinson State University, seemed to suggest in a Forum Communications article that he hopes the policy would apply to all North Dakota University System campuses eventually.

What is UND’s position on HB 1446, and how would you work with your North Dakota University System peers to oppose this bill and protect tenure?

16:15: Two questions regard UND’s upcoming labor-market analysis study, one about the market analysis and another about the timeline – in other words, when it would be completed.

18:34: On Dec. 21, there was an All-Facilities meeting that was cancelled. Can you let the campus know if it will be rescheduled?

19:18: Will UND take a stand against HB 1474, which is among the bills that are attacking the trans community and our DEI work? These will impact campus and our community members but also hinder our ability to grow our campus and recruit new faculty and students.

21:25: There is considerable conversation about the changing of the NDPERS health care plan. What can you share with us, and what are the administration and the State Board of Higher Education’s thoughts on protecting the plan as it stands today?

24:03: What can UND do to support our transgender students in light of the bills that are targeting transgender people within our state?

27:36: Regarding the annual performance template, the “meets/does not meet” criteria does not allow us to distinguish employee performance, it is very concerning. Can you explain why this change was made and how we’ll be able to assign raises based on performance?

32:39: Is there an update on the retirement benefits?

34:16: What is UND doing to ensure faculty, staff and students with disabilities receive the same level of supportive, inclusive spaces that the LGBTQ+ community already receives on campus?

40:28: What is UND’s stance on HB 1404, which would permit concealed firearm carry on campus, including classrooms, dorms, etc., particularly as a military-friendly campus including those living with PTSD?

43:40: There was talk of having all positions paid out of appropriated funds. What is the status of this? It is very stressful when a position is funded by contracts from outside facilities or grants.

46:38: SB 2239 is a great approach to solving any issues with PERS. Does NDUS or UND have a stance on that particular bill?

47:57: The Disability Office is an equity office. What is UND doing regarding social inclusion, specifically? As a continuation of the previous disability question, how is the campus facilitating social connections between those on campus with disabilities, such as a space at the Memorial Union?

52:23: What about locking down classrooms in an emergency, when it comes to the ability to carry firearms on campus?

54:50: Is there an update on the director of the Indigenous Student Center?