Number of Teaching Professors Pursuing Tenure at WPI Grows
Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has appointed 13 additional teaching professors to the university’s pioneering tenure track that recognizes and rewards excellence in teaching, bringing the total number of teaching faculty members on the tenure pathway to 43. The appointments take effect July 1.
The newest cohort represents the third round of appointments to the innovative tenure track. Sixteen faculty members were appointed in 2022; the first cohort of appointees, named in 2021, included 14 faculty members.
“All of these faculty members are accomplished teachers who have demonstrated their commitment and talent for engaging students to think, learn, and collaborate in classrooms, in labs, and on projects around the globe—work that is critical to providing the distinctive WPI education that equips students with the knowledge, skills, and passion to address the world’s great problems,” says Provost Wole Soboyejo. “I am delighted that these outstanding educators have the opportunity to pursue tenure.”
Research universities such as WPI typically award tenure only to faculty members who balance teaching, research, and service. WPI’s tenure path for teaching professors opened the pursuit of tenure to those full-time faculty members whose primary responsibility is teaching, as well.
WPI launched its tenure track for teaching faculty members in 2021 after more than three years of study and discussion among faculty members, administrators, and trustees. Those who pursue and achieve tenure on this path are known as assistant, associate, or (full) professors of teaching, and are expected to spend most of their time teaching while also demonstrating professional growth and service to their academic communities.
The teaching track to tenure was part of a bundle of changes made in 2021 that also secured longer-term contracts, academic freedom, and the right to faculty governance participation for full-time teaching faculty who are not eligible to pursue tenure.
Faculty members appointed to the tenure track effective July 1, 2023:
Faculty members appointed to the tenure track effective July 1, 2022:
Faculty members appointed to the tenure track effective July 1, 2021:
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