How We Work
The board's policies and practices reflect decentralized decision-making and operations. Standardized policies are established to ensure institutional accountability while maintaining campus prerogatives.
The board maintains a strong committee structure through which all policies and other significant considerations are deliberated. Board members, as well as student and faculty representatives from the institutions, serve on these major committees: Academic Policies and Programs, Finance and Business Operations, Personnel, Student Life, Tennessee Technology Centers, Compensation, and Business, Community and Public Affairs. Additional committees are established on an ad hoc basis to address special concerns.
The board subscribes to a concept of strong presidencies in which the president is the chief executive officer of the institution with broadly delegated responsibilities for all facets of campus management and operations. The president serves at the pleasure of the board, reports to the board through the chancellor, and is the official medium of communication between the campus community and the chancellor.
The policies through which the board implements its statutory responsibility for governance and management of the system establish both standards for consistency among the institutions and defined parameters to promote institutional flexibility and discretion. To ensure appropriate participation in the consideration of proposed board policies and system-wide decisions, all such matters are reviewed by a structure of system sub-councils, the presidents as a council, the board staff, and a board committee prior to their consideration by the board. More detail about these sub-councils and other campus-based groups may be found in the Campus Liaison Groups section of the website. The policies and guidelines themselves also have their own section of the site.
The central office staff works in a highly collaborative, generally autonomous manner, which is essential given the relatively small staff (94 full-time staff for general operations, plus an additional 23 who work for the Regents Online Campus Collaborative, the system's online degree program) to oversee such a large system. The senior staff meets weekly, and each individual office has periodic meetings of its own staff.