The mission of the system is to develop human resources, to discover and disseminate knowledge, to extend knowledge and its application beyond the boundaries of its campuses and to serve and stimulate society by developing in students heightened intellectual, cultural and humane sensitivities, scientific, professional and technological expertise and a sense of purpose. Inherent in this broad mission are methods of instruction, research, extended training and public service designed to educate people and improve the human condition. Basic to every purpose of the system is the search for truth.
History: 1973 c. 335
There is created in this state a system of institutions of learning to be known as the University of Wisconsin System. The principal office and one university of the system shall be located at or near the seat of state government.
History: 1973 c. 335
In this chapter:
“Academic staff" means professional and administrative personnel with duties, and subject to types of appointments, that are primarily associated with higher education institutions or their administration.
“Board of regents" or “board" means the board of regents of the University of Wisconsin System.
“Campus" means the publicly owned or leased buildings and grounds which comprise all or part of an institution or the extension.
“Chancellor" means the chief executive of an institution.
“College campus" means any one of the 2-year collegiate campuses of the system.
“Extension" means the community outreach, public service and extension services of the system.
“Faculty" means persons who hold the rank of professor, associate professor, assistant professor or instructor in an academic department or its functional equivalent in an institution and such academic staff as may be designated by the chancellor and faculty of the institution.
“Institution" means any university or an organizational equivalent designated by the board and the University of Wisconsin colleges.
“Instructional academic staff" means academic staff members with teaching responsibilities.
“Mainframe" means a large scale, central computer maintained by the board for multipurpose functions.
“President" means the chief executive of the system.
“Student" means any person who is registered for study in any institution for the current academic period. For the purpose of administering particular programs or functions involving students, the board shall promulgate rules defining continuation or termination of student status during periods between academic periods.
“System" means the University of Wisconsin System.
“University" means any baccalaureate or graduate degree granting institution.
“University of Wisconsin Colleges" means the college campuses as a whole.
“University staff" means all employees of the system other than faculty, academic staff, persons whose employment is a necessary part of their training, student assistants, and student hourly help.
Corporate title, officers, meetings, records. 36.07(1)(1)
Corporate status and title.
The board and their successors in office shall constitute a body corporate by the name of “Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System".
The board shall appoint a secretary of the board who shall keep a faithful record of all its transactions.
Meetings, times, notice.
The times for holding the regular annual meeting and such other meetings as are required, and the manner of providing notice for such meetings, shall be determined by the board's bylaws.
Access to the board.
The board shall provide in its operating policies for access to the board by the public, faculty, students and chancellors.
Meetings and records public.
The board meetings shall be open and all records of such meetings and of all proceedings of the board shall be open to inspection in accordance with subchs. II
and V of ch. 19
The primary responsibility for governance of the system shall be vested in the board which shall enact policies and promulgate rules for governing the system, plan for the future needs of the state for university education, ensure the diversity of quality undergraduate programs while preserving the strength of the state's graduate training and research centers and promote the widest degree of institutional autonomy within the controlling limits of system-wide policies and priorities established by the board.
See also UWS
, Wis. adm. code.
The board, in consultation with the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation, shall do all of the following for each economic development program, as defined in s. 36.11 (29r) (a)
, administered by the board:
Establish clear and measurable goals for the program that are tied to statutory policy objectives.
Establish at least one quantifiable benchmark for each program goal described in subd. 1.
Require that each recipient of a grant or loan under the program submit a report to the board. Each contract with a recipient of a grant or loan under the program shall specify the frequency and format of the report to be submitted to the board and the performance measures to be included in the report.
Establish a method for evaluating the projected results of the program with actual outcomes as determined by evaluating the information described in subds. 1.
Annually and independently verify, from a sample of grants and loans, the accuracy of the information required to be reported under subd. 3.
Establish by rule a requirement that the recipient of a grant or loan under the program of at least $100,000 submit to the board a verified statement signed by both an independent certified public accountant licensed or certified under ch. 442
and the director or principal officer of the recipient to attest to the accuracy of the verified statement, and make available for inspection the documents supporting the verified statement. The board shall include the requirement established by rule under this subdivision in the contract entered into by a grant or loan recipient.
Establish by rule policies and procedures permitting the board to do all of the following if a recipient of a grant or loan or tax benefits under the program submits false or misleading information to the board or fails to comply with the terms of a contract entered into with the board under the program and fails to provide to the satisfaction of the board an explanation for the noncompliance:
The board, after public hearing at each institution, shall establish for each institution a mission statement delineating specific program responsibilities and types of degrees to be granted.
The board shall determine the educational programs to be offered in the system and may discontinue educational programs as it deems necessary.
The board shall establish policies to guide program activities to ensure that they will be compatible with the missions of the institutions of the system. To this end, the board shall make all reasonable effort to provide night courses.
Subject to par. (em)
, the board shall appoint a president of the system; a chancellor for each institution; a dean for each college campus; the state geologist; the director of the laboratory of hygiene; the director of the psychiatric institute; the state cartographer; and the requisite number of officers, other than the vice presidents, associate vice presidents, and assistant vice presidents of the system; faculty; academic staff; and other employees and fix the salaries, subject to the limitations under par. (j)
and s. 230.12 (3) (e)
, the duties and the term of office for each. The board shall fix the salaries, subject to the limitations under par. (j)
and s. 230.12 (3) (e)
, and the duties for each chancellor, vice president, associate vice president, and assistant vice president of the system. No sectarian or partisan tests or any tests based upon race, religion, national origin, or sex shall ever be allowed or exercised in the appointment of the employees of the system.
Neither the board nor any institution may adopt any policy or promulgate any rule that requires the board to consider for appointment as president of the system, chancellor, or vice chancellor only those individuals who are faculty members of the system or another institution of higher education, who have been granted tenure within the system or another institution of higher education, or who hold the highest level of academic degree in a field of study or profession.
The board shall delegate to each chancellor the necessary authority for the administration and operation of the institution within the policies and guidelines established by the board. The board may also delegate or rescind other authority to chancellors, committees of the board, administrative officers, members of the faculty and students or such other groups as it deems appropriate.
The board shall not create, except as specifically authorized by the legislature in each instance, any new college, school or its functional equivalent if such college, school or functional equivalent has academic programs at the graduate or professional, post-baccalaureate level.
For the purposes of this paragraph, college or school means an academic unit below the institutional level but above the departmental level, including but not limited to a graduate school, law school, medical school, social work school, architecture school, business school and a public administration school.
For the purposes of this paragraph, a new college or school shall be deemed to have been created if an administrative position of dean or its functional equivalent is established and if a new instructional program, separate and distinct from the programs currently available at that institution, is established.
This paragraph does not apply to the redesignation or reorganization of existing colleges or schools if accomplished through the reclassification of existing positions or the restructuring of existing organizational entities.
The board shall allocate funds and adopt budgets for the respective institutions giving consideration to the principles of comparable budgetary support for similar programs and equitable compensation for faculty and academic staff with comparable training, experience and responsibilities and recognizing competitive ability to recruit and retain qualified faculty and academic staff. If the board ceases or suspends operation of any institution or college campus, the appropriations to the board for operation of the institution or college campus may be utilized by the board for any other purpose authorized by the appropriations within the period for which the appropriations are made.
The board shall develop policies for the purpose of specifically identifying the general purpose revenue and nongeneral purpose revenue funding sources used for noninstructional student activities and for the purpose of governing the allocation of funds to those noninstructional student activities supported by both general purpose and nongeneral purpose revenue.
Except where such matters are a subject of bargaining with a certified representative of a collective bargaining unit under s. 111.91
, the board shall establish salaries for persons prior to July 1 of each year for the next fiscal year, and shall designate the effective dates for payment of the new salaries. In the first year of the biennium, payments of the salaries established for the preceding year shall be continued until the biennial budget bill is enacted. If the budget is enacted after July 1, payments shall be made following enactment of the budget to satisfy the obligations incurred on the effective dates, as designated by the board, for the new salaries, subject only to the appropriation of funds by the legislature and s. 20.928 (3)
. This paragraph does not limit the authority of the board to establish salaries for new appointments. The board may not increase the salaries of employees under this paragraph unless the salary increase conforms to the proposal as approved under s. 230.12 (3) (e)
or the board authorizes the salary increase to recognize merit, to correct salary inequities under par. (h)
, to fund job reclassifications or promotions, or to recognize competitive factors. The granting of salary increases to recognize competitive factors does not obligate inclusion of the annualized amount of the increases in the appropriations under s. 20.285 (1)
for subsequent fiscal bienniums. No later than October 1 of each year, the board shall report to the joint committee on finance and the secretary of administration and administrator of the division of personnel management in the department of administration concerning the amounts of any salary increases granted to recognize competitive factors, and the institutions at which they are granted, for the 12-month period ending on the preceding June 30.
The board shall possess all powers necessary or convenient for the operation of the system except as limited in this chapter and ss. 13.48 (14) (am)
and 16.848 (1)
The president shall be president of all the faculties and shall be vested with the responsibility of administering the system under board policies and shall direct a central administration which shall assist the board and the president in establishing system-wide policies in monitoring, reviewing and evaluating these policies, in coordinating program development and operation among institutions, in planning the programmatic, financial and physical development of the system, in maintaining fiscal control and compiling and recommending educational programs, operating budgets and building programs for the board. Subject to par. (b)
, the president shall appoint each senior vice president, vice president, associate vice president and assistant vice president of the system. The president shall fix the term of office for each senior vice president, vice president, associate vice president and assistant vice president of the system.
The sum of the number of senior vice presidents and vice presidents of the system that the president may appoint under par. (a)
may not exceed 4.
The president shall appoint a special assistant to the president to serve as the director of the office of educational opportunity under s. 36.64
. The special assistant serves at the pleasure of the president.
The chancellors shall be the executive heads of their respective faculties and institutions and shall be vested with the responsibility of administering board policies under the coordinating direction of the president and be accountable and report to the president and the board on the operation and administration of their institutions. Subject to board policy the chancellors of the institutions in consultation with their faculties shall be responsible for designing curricula and setting degree requirements; determining academic standards and establishing grading systems; defining and administering institutional standards for faculty peer evaluation and screening candidates for appointment, promotion and tenure; recommending individual merit increases; administering associated auxiliary services; and administering all funds, from whatever source, allocated, generated or intended for use of their institutions.
The chancellor may designate a person as provost, to act as chief executive officer of the institution in the chancellor's absence, if the person currently holds a limited appointment as vice chancellor, associate chancellor, assistant chancellor, associate vice chancellor or assistant vice chancellor. The chancellor may not create an additional administrative position for the purpose of this paragraph.
Meaning of “subject to" in certain provisions.
In subs. (4)
, “subject to the responsibilities and powers" means subordinate to the responsibilities and powers.
The faculty of each institution, subject to the responsibilities and powers of the board, the president, and the chancellor of such institution, shall have the primary responsibility for advising the chancellor regarding academic and educational activities and faculty personnel matters. The faculty of each institution shall have the right to determine their own faculty organizational structure and to select representatives to participate in institutional governance, except that the faculty of each institution shall ensure that faculty in academic disciplines related to science, technology, engineering, and mathematics are adequately represented in the faculty organizational structure.
The academic staff members of each institution, subject to the responsibilities and powers of the board, the president, the chancellor, and the faculty of the institution, shall have the primary responsibility for advising the chancellor regarding the formulation and review, and shall be represented in the development, of all policies and procedures concerning academic staff members, including academic staff personnel matters. The academic staff members of each institution shall have the right to organize themselves in a manner they determine and to select their representatives to participate in institutional governance.
The students of each institution or campus subject to the responsibilities and powers of the board, the president, the chancellor, and the faculty shall have primary responsibility for advising the chancellor regarding the formulation and review of policies concerning student life, services, and interests. Students in consultation with the chancellor and subject to the final confirmation of the board shall have the responsibility for the disposition of those student fees which constitute substantial support for campus student activities. The students of each institution or campus shall have the right to organize themselves in a manner they determine and to select their representatives to participate in institutional governance.
History: 1973 c. 335
; 1975 c. 39
; 1977 c. 196
ss. 130 (1)
, (2), 131
; 1977 c. 418
; 1979 c. 34
s. 2102 (29) (a)
; 1981 c. 20
s. 2202 (1) (a)
; 1983 a. 27
s. 2200 (15)
; 1983 a. 366
; 1985 a. 29
; 1987 a. 4
; 1989 a. 31
; 1991 a. 39
; 1997 a. 27
, 9456 (3m)
; 1997 a. 35
; 1999 a. 42
; 2001 a. 16
; 2003 a. 33
; 2003 a. 48
; 2003 a. 206
; 2003 a. 320
; 2005 a. 25
; 2007 a. 125
; 2009 a. 28
; 2011 a. 10
; 2013 a. 20
; 2013 a. 166
; 2015 a. 55
; 2017 a. 59
Sub. (5) gives student organizations, rather than the student body, the right to select representatives to participate in institutional governance. Student Association of UW-Milwaukee v. Baum, 74 Wis. 2d 283
, 246 N.W.2d 622
Student and faculty voting participation on the Board of Regents is limited to duly appointed members, but that does not preclude the board or any committee thereof from utilizing groups of nonmembers in advisory capacities. 60 Atty. Gen. 395.
The Board of Regents has no authority to provide a deferred salary plan for employees other than through the state teachers retirement system or the Wisconsin retirement fund. 61 Atty. Gen. 6.
A ruling by the chancellor of the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire denying a request to conduct door-to-door solicitation in residence halls did not violate constitutional rights. 61 Atty. Gen. 373.
The leasing of university buildings to a religious congregation during nonschool days and hours on a temporary basis while the congregation's existing facility is being renovated and leasing convention space to a church conference would not violate the separation of church and state provisions of the 1st amendment and article I, section 18
, of the Wisconsin Constitution. 63 Atty. Gen. 374.
Regents should identify how compulsory fees will be used to necessarily and conveniently further the objects of the university before approving a segregated fee. Regent's duties are unchanged under sub. (5). 63 Atty. Gen. 385.
The financing of student organizations through mandatory student fees does not violate the 1st amendment if viewpoint neutrality is the operational principal. Board of Regents v. Southworth, 529 U.S. 217
, 120 S. Ct. 1346
, 146 L. Ed. 2d 193
With one exception, the university's system, as required by Southworth
, 529 U.S. 217
(2000), for distributing compelled fees collected from university students to student groups that delegates funding decisions to the student government was subject to sufficient limits. Southworth v. Board of Regents, 307 F.3d 566
Although the 1st amendment establishment clause of the U.S. Constitution neither compels nor authorizes the university to categorically exclude funding of activities related to worship, proselytizing, and sectarian religious instruction with segregated fees, the university may nevertheless be able to exclude some or all of the activities to which it objects. The university is free to enact viewpoint neutral rules restricting access to segregated fees, for it may create what is tantamount to a limited public forum if the principles of viewpoint neutrality are respected. However, before excluding an activity from the segregated fee forum pursuant to a content-based distinction, the university must explain specifically why that particular activity, viewed as a whole, is outside the forum's purposes. Roman Catholic Foundation v. Regents of University of Wisconsin System, 578 F. Supp. 2d 1121
Powers and duties of the board of regents. 36.11(1)(1)
Protection of people; custody and management of property. 36.11(1)(a)(a)
The board may promulgate rules under ch. 227
to protect the lives, health and safety of persons on property under its jurisdiction and to protect such property and to prevent obstruction of the functions of the system. Any person who violates any rule promulgated under this paragraph may be fined not more than $500 or imprisoned not more than 90 days or both.
Except as provided in this paragraph and ss. 13.48 (14) (am)
and 16.848 (1)
, the board may purchase, have custody of, hold, control, possess, lease, grant easements and enjoy any lands, buildings, books, records and all other property of any nature which may be necessary and required for the purposes, objects and uses of the system authorized by law. Any lease by the board is subject to the powers of the University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics Authority under s. 233.03 (13)
and the rights of the authority under any lease agreement, as defined in s. 233.01 (6)
. The board shall not permit a facility that would be privately owned or operated to be constructed on state-owned land without obtaining prior approval of the building commission under s. 13.48 (12)
. Subject to prior action under s. 13.48 (14) (am)
or 16.848 (1)
, the board may sell or dispose of such property as provided by law, or any part thereof when in its judgment it is for the best interests of the system and the state. All purchases of real property shall be subject to the approval of the building commission. The provision of all leases of real property to be occupied by the board for use other than for student housing shall be the responsibility of the board. The provision of all leases of real property to be occupied by the board for use as student housing shall be the responsibility of the department of administration under s. 16.84 (5)
, except for leases in effect on July 14, 2015, regardless of any subsequent extension, modification, or renewal, which shall be the responsibility of the board.
The board may promulgate rules under ch. 227
for the management of all property under its jurisdiction, for the care and preservation thereof and for the promotion and preservation of the orderly operation of the system in any or all of its authorized activities and in any or all of its institutions with forfeitures for their violation, which may be sued for and collected in the name of the board before any court having jurisdiction of such action. Forfeitures shall not exceed $500.
The board shall promulgate rules under ch. 227
prescribing the times, places, and manner in which political literature may be distributed and political campaigning may be conducted in state-owned residence halls. No such rule may authorize any activity prohibited under s. 11.1207 (3)
All fines imposed and collected under this subsection shall be transmitted to the county treasurer for disposition in accordance with s. 59.25 (3) (f)
. All forfeitures, including forfeitures of posted bail if any, imposed and collected under this subsection shall be transmitted to the county treasurer for disposition in accordance with ss. 778.13
Subject to prior action under s. 13.48 (14) (am)
or 16.848 (1)
, the board, with the approval of the building commission, may sell or lease state-owned residence halls to another state agency or nonstate nonprofit agency for purposes of alternate use.
See also chs. UWS 18
, Wis. adm. code.