3.2.4 External influence
The governing board is free from undue influence from political, religious, or other external bodies and protects the institution from such influence.
Judgement of Compliance:
The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga (UTC) is a member of the University of Tennessee (UT) system, which is governed by the UT Board of Trustees. The Board of Trustees (BOT) has published policies to ensure the Board and the University are free from undue influence from any external bodies. The BOT Code of Ethics Policy, Section 2 states,
Trustees bring diverse backgrounds and expertise valuable to the governance of a comprehensive, statewide university system. In carrying out their duties, however, Trustees must keep the welfare of the entire University paramount over any parochial interest.
The same Code of Ethics Policy has a separate section on “Gifts, Favors, and Gratuities,” which states,
Trustees shall not knowingly accept any gift, favor, or gratuity from any person or entity under contract with the University or seeking a contract with the University.
Additionally, the BOT Charter requires an oath of office before a Trustee can serve the University:
Each Trustee, before acting in the appointment, shall take before some judge or justice of the peace an oath faithfully, honestly, and impartially to discharge the duties of the appointment, and that in all votes as a Trustee, the Trustee will vote as in his or her judgment will best promote the interest of the University and education therein.
Finally, it is notable that there is nothing in the minutes or actions of the Board to indicate any undue influence from any external bodies.
- UT BOT Code of Ethics Policy:
- UT BOT Charter Article VI, Section 6: