Bylaws of the Department of Agriculture, Nutrition, and Veterinary Sciences

University of Nevada, Reno

  • Approved by the Department Faculty on May 5, 2017
  • Approved by the Dean of the College of Agriculture, Biotechnology, and Natural Resources on November 27, 2017.

Table of Contents


Mission statement

The Mission of the Department of Agriculture, Nutrition and Veterinary Sciences (ANVS) is to demonstrate a commitment to excellence and innovation while meeting the needs of the citizens of the State of Nevada and the Nation. This mission is accomplished by the following:

  • Provide strong educational programs in the disciplines of Agriculture, Nutrition, Rangeland Ecology and Management and Veterinary Sciences at the undergraduate, graduate degree and internship levels.
  • Train students to meet state and national needs by increasing the work force of agriculturalists, nutritionists (nutritional science/dietetics) and animal healthcare professionals.
  • Conduct innovative research in the departmental disciplines providing local, national and global impact.
  • Address critical issues identified by the citizens of the State of Nevada through continued teaching, scholarly activities and service.

Part I: Introduction

  • A. Authorization

    These Bylaws are authorized under Section 1.3.4 of the Nevada System of Higher Education (NSHE) Code and the University of Nevada, Reno (UNR) Bylaws 1.1.1. These bylaws shall be in force upon approval by a majority vote of a quorum of the voting faculty in the Department and after review by a college bylaws review committee and approval of the Dean of the College of Agriculture, Biotechnology and Natural Resources (CABNR).

  • B. Scope of the bylaws

    The Bylaws provide for (1) the organization and administrative structure and (2) the personnel policies and procedures for the Department and are consistent with the College of Agriculture, Biotechnology and Natural Resources Bylaws, the University of Nevada Reno Bylaws, the University of Nevada System Code and the laws of Nevada and the United States. These bylaws are intended to be a statement of general policy.

  • C. Amendment of the bylaws

    Any faculty member in ANVS may propose amendments to these bylaws. Amendments shall be adopted upon the following:

    1. Submit the proposed amendment to the voting members of ANVS at least one week prior to the amendment being placed on a Department faculty meeting agenda.
    2. An open discussion at a Department faculty meeting regarding the amendment will be held.
    3. The amendment will be forwarded to all Departmental faculty and will be approved by a majority vote of a quorum of the faculty.

    A proposed amendment requires a majority vote of approval of the faculty voting, plus approval of the Chair of the Department, the Dean of CABNR, and the President of UNR to be implemented.

  • D. Interpretation of the bylaws

    Questions of interpretation of these bylaws shall be directed first to the voting faculty of the Department for discussion and possible clarification, if unresolved at the Department level, the question shall be referred to the Dean for additional interpretation. In the event the question(s) is/are unresolved, further interpretation from the Faculty Senate Policy Committee on Bylaws and Code and/or the General Counsel of the NSHE will be sought and shall represent the final interpretation.


Part II: Organization and administrative structure

Chapter I — Units

The Department of Agriculture, Nutrition and Veterinary Sciences is composed of:

  • A. Faculty

    This shall consist of all persons holding authorized professional positions and assigned to the department. Faculty includes tenured, tenure-track and those with continuing faculty appointments as defined by 2.3.2of the UNR Bylaws. Ranked and Unranked Academic Faculty are entitled to vote on departmental matters.

    1. Tenure-Track and Tenured Faculty-These positions include the ranks of Professor (IV), Associate Professor (III), Assistant Professor (II) and Lecturer (I) as defined by subsection 3.2.1 of the NSHE Code.
    2. Unranked Academic Faculty - These include Lecturers, Instructors or Research Faculty who have the right to be promoted according to subsection 2.3.3 of the UNR Bylaws.
  • B. Adjunct faculty

    This shall consist of persons qualified to provide special services to the department, which are of value to the teaching, research, public service or educational support service programs of the university. Per UNR Bylaws (subsection 2.3.6 (c)), persons holding adjunct or adjunct/clinical titles shall be nonvoting members of the faculty, the provisions of these Bylaws shall exclude adjunct and adjunct/clinical faculty.

  • C. Classified personnel

    This is composed of non-professional personnel governed by the classified employees system.

  • D. Students (undergraduate and graduate students)

    Changes in Organization

    Organizational changes shall be made in accordance with 2.1.3of the UNR Bylaws.


Chapter II — Administrative officers

  • A. Department chair

    The Chair shall be the Chief Administrative and Executive Officer of ANVS, which includes serving as Chair at all open faculty meetings and as a member, ex-officio, of all the Department’s committees except the committee that evaluates the Chair. The Chair shall only exercise voting rights in order to break tie votes.

  • B. Responsibilities and duties of the chair

    The Primary responsibility of the Chair shall be to administer the Department and to provide academic leadership to the Department and shall include, but not be limited to, convening Department faculty meetings, initiation processes for faculty evaluation including promotion and tenure consistent with UNR Bylaws (3.3.3 and 3.3.5), representing Department opinions to other academic constituents, and communicating Department, College, and University requirements, decisions and policies.

    When a temporary absence of the Chair is anticipated, the Chair shall appoint a faculty member to act on her/his behalf.

    The Chair will serve until the Chair resigns or until removed by a "Vote of No Confidence" by a simple majority of the Faculty forwarded to the CABNR Dean. Evaluation of the Chair will occur annually and is advisory to the college dean.

  • C. Duties of the faculty

    Faculty members are responsible for continual improvement of curriculum, teaching, research and outreach/service. The duties of the Departmental faculty member are the professional responsibilities specified in Section 3.3.1of the UNR Bylaws. Faculty members with an appointment that includes teaching are normally expected to advise undergraduate students. Undergraduate advising will be allocated based on student enrollment and the faculty member's teaching percentage indicated in their role statement. Since specific assignments and duties of the individual faculty member will vary, promotion, tenure and merit will be based on performance according to the faculty member’s annual role statement.

  • D. Other administrative positions

    The Dean of the College must authorize the addition of other administrative positions besides those of Chair. The duties and responsibilities of additional administrative positions shall be arrived at with input from the department faculty. The final duties and responsibilities shall be described in the Department Policy Manual.

  • E. Standing committees

    The chair will solicit individual faculty interested in representation on various committees in the College of Agriculture, Biotechnology and Natural Resources and appoint designated members to represent the Department.

    The Department shall have the following standing committees with members designated as stated for each committee and approved by a majority vote of the voting faculty. Each committee shall be composed of 3 faculty members with staggered 3-year terms. The member with seniority on the committee shall serve as its Chair. Ad hoc committees may be established by the Chair or faculty by Departmental vote as deemed appropriate.

    1. Faculty Peer Review (Personnel) Committee – An individual completing a 3-year term on the Peer Review committee is not eligible for election or reappointment during the following 2 years. Duties of the committee include:
      1. Review the Department Chair’s portion of the annual faculty evaluations; if the committee and Chair cannot reach agreement on an evaluation, both the committee’s and Chair’s evaluation of the faculty member will be forwarded to the Dean.
      2. Conduct an annual evaluation of the Department Chair, with input from all Department Faculty (Chapter 3, Section D of the Department Bylaws).
    2. Department Bylaws Committee – The committee will review the Bylaws at least once at the beginning of a 3-year term and update as necessary.
    3. Curriculum Committee – This committee will periodically review formal course offerings and make recommendations to the Department concerning changes, additions or deletions to the graduate and undergraduate curriculum of the majors offered by the Department. This committee will review proposals for new classes, changes to existing classes and provide guidance to the Department and Chair before sending to the CABNR or University of Nevada, Reno curriculum committees.

Chapter III — Faculty

  • A. Faculty governance

    The faculty shall govern itself in accordance with these Bylaws, CABNR, the UNR Bylaws and NSHE code, the laws of the state of Nevada and the United States.

  • B. Voting rights

    Voting rights of the Department faculty shall be consistent with those defined in subsection 3.1.7 of the UNR Bylaws. Ranked and Unranked Academic Faculty with FTE in the Department are entitled to vote on departmental matters. Proxy voting is recognized upon the written authorization of the person designating the proxy and notification of such designation to the presiding officer prior to the vote.

  • C. Meetings of the faculty

    Meetings of the Department may be called by the Department Chair as needed or by petition of the faculty. Notification of Department meetings shall be provided to faculty at least five working days prior to the meeting, unless there is an emergency. Meeting agendas shall be distributed to all Faculty at least one day prior to the day of the meeting. Minutes of Department meetings will be distributed to all Faculty at the following Department meeting with a copy maintained in the Departmental office. The Chair or a designee shall serve as presiding officer of the Department faculty meetings.


Part III Professional responsibilities, evaluations and personnel recommendations

Chapter I — Faculty rights

  • A. Rights

    Department faculty shall have all the rights and privileges of the University of Nevada, Reno faculty as provided in Part 3, Chapter 1o of the University of Nevada, Reno Bylaws. In addition, each faculty member has equal rights and privileges regardless of the proportion of specific responsibilities including: Teaching, Research and Outreach/Service.

  • B. Personnel File

    All personnel files maintained in the Departmental office shall be considered part of the official personnel file for each member of the faculty and shall be maintained in accordance with UNR Bylaws Part 3, Chapter 1, Sections 4, 5, and 6.


Chapter II — Grievances

  • A. Grievances

    If a faculty member and the Chair of the department cannot agree upon specified professional responsibilities, the matter is subject to mediation as provided in the UNR Bylaws, such a disagreement may be subject to other University or system procedures, such as grievance process, outlined in the NSHE code (UNR Bylaws3.2)


Chapter III — Professional responsibilities

  • A. Annual evaluations and merit evaluations

    Annual evaluations will follow CABNR and UNR policy (UNR Bylaws 3.3.2-3.3.4) and will adhere to the guidelines set forth in the Department Policy Manual. Each faculty member shall be evaluated annually according to the specified professional responsibilities described in the faculty member’s role statement in order to assess the quality of professional performance as unsatisfactory, satisfactory, commendable, or excellent. The Departmental evaluation will be conducted by the Department Chair with appropriate input from the ANVS Personnel Committee. The Personnel Committee will report to the Chair after reviewing each Faculty's annual evaluation and act to reconcile any differences between the Chair's evaluation and the Committee's.

    In accordance with 3.3.4 of the UNR Bylaws, all members of the academic faculty shall be evaluated and formally considered annually for merit increases.

  • B. Tenure evaluations

    As provided in Section 3.3 of the NSHE Code, academic faculty eligible for appointment with tenure must serve in a probationary period in a member institution identified in Subsection 3.4.3 of the Code before receiving such an appointment. Except as provided in the Code, the total probationary period for all academic faculty eligible for such appointment shall not exceed six years of uninterrupted full-time employment in Ranks I through IV. The probationary faculty member must be evaluated and advised regarding prospects for a tenure recommendation no later than during the third probationary year of membership within the academic faculty of the University of Nevada, Reno. The probationary faculty member shall be informed of this evaluation in writing, including the program of improvement that must be undertaken to be considered for tenure and promotion at a later date.

    Evaluation of faculty members for tenure (as per UNR Bylaws3.3.2) and continuing appointment prior to tenure shall be made on an annual basis. These evaluations shall consider the faculty member’s effectiveness as a teacher, record of scholarly research and record of service.

  • C. Promotion evaluations

    All tenure, promotion (tenure and non-tenure track faculty) and annual merit evaluations shall be made on the basis of the person's professional performance in meeting the responsibilities specified in Section 3.3.1 of the University of Nevada, Reno Bylaws. All such evaluations shall be initiated at the department level and forwarded to the appropriate administrator. After review, the administrator shall inform each faculty member of the final recommendation, within 15 calendar days from the date of making the recommendation. If the faculty member disagrees with the recommendation regarding tenure, an annual evaluation rating, a salary increase, promotion or reappointment to employment, he or she may ask for reconsideration through regular administrative channels as specified in Chapter 5 of the NSHE Code within 15 calendar days of the receipt of the written reasons.

  • Evaluation of department chairs

    The Department Chair shall be evaluated annually with respect to all duties and responsibilities, in accordance with the Departmental Policy Manual and UNR Bylaws. Annual evaluations of the Department Chair will be performed by the Personnel Committee. The committee shall request input from each member of the Department’s faculty and then provide a written evaluation to both the Department Chair and the Dean of the College of Agriculture, Biotechnology and Natural Resources.

  • E. Personnel recommendations

    All personnel evaluations involving tenure, promotion, or annual evaluations and merit evaluations which may result in salary increases shall be made on the basis of the person’s professional performance. All personnel recommendations involving tenure, promotion, and annual review shall follow the procedures and scheduled specified by the University of Nevada, Reno Bylaws 3.3, further recourse is defined in the University of Nevada, Reno Bylaws. Upon request, a faculty member shall receive written notice of reasons for the evaluation from the Department Chair including the recommendations of any peer review involved.

    In the event that the evaluation is "unsatisfactory" at either the Department or College level, the faculty can follow the recourse outlined under Grievance procedures as established in 3.2 of the University of Nevada, Reno Bylaws.

  • F. Evaluation criteria for appointment

    All faculty evaluations shall be made consistent with the UNR Bylaws and with the Mission Statement of the Department. The faculty evaluations, annual, promotion, tenure and merit shall be conducted with respect to the criteria specified in the Department Policy Manual. The Chair shall be evaluated annually with respect to the criteria specified in the Department Policy Manual.


Chapter IV — Tenure and faculty mentorship

  • A. Justification

    Justification, eligibility, probationary period, granting of tenure, notice of tenure, termination of tenure, financial or curricular reasons for terminations, expiration of tenure, tenured faculty in administrative positions, relinquishment of tenure or transfer and annual performance evaluation of tenured faculty.

    The justification, eligibility, probationary period, granting of tenure, notice of tenure, termination of tenure, financial or curricular reasons for terminations, expiration of tenure, tenured faculty in administrative positions, relinquishment of tenure on transfer and annual performance evaluation of tenured faculty shall be addressed as per 3.4 of the UNR Bylaws.

  • B. Faculty mentorship

    A committee consisting of faculty of equivalent rank or higher from the Department, College, University or outside of the institution will provide the Chair with an annual evaluation of a non-tenured faculty member’s progress towards tenure. The mentorship committee will be based on input of the faculty being mentored and should consist of a minimum of one tenured faculty from the Department. The mentorship committee will provide a written report to the faculty member and Department Chair. The faculty member can elect to forward these recommendations to the Deanas part of their tenure and promotion application or third year tenure review.


Chapter V — Non-reappointment, dismissal, termination, and change in contractual status


Part IV: Search procedure

When necessary to fill the Chair position, either an internal candidate will be appointed or a national search will be conductedas decided by the Department Faculty.

  • A. Internal chair search

    A new Chair may be appointed via election of an existing CABNR faculty member by the ANVS Department Faculty. The Department will then nominate a candidate for the position and forward that name to the Dean of CABNR.

  • B. National chair search

    The Dean of the College of Agriculture, Biotechnology and Natural Resources shall appoint a search committee in order to identify candidates for the position. The search committee shall consist of at least three (3) members of the Department plus at least one member from outside the Department. The Department will then nominate a candidate for the position to the Dean of the College. Search Committees shall refer to UNR Human Resource hiring policy for each respective search.

  • C. Department faculty search

    The Department Chair shall appoint a search committee for each vacant position. Search Committees shall refer to UNR Human Resource hiring policy for each respective search.