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SECTION B. Organization of the University

Table of Contents

B.1 The Governing Board: The Board of Governors of the Colorado State University System

B.1.1 Membership and Term of Office
B.1.2 Vacancies and Compensation
B.1.3 Meetings of the Board

B.1.3.1 Scheduling of Board Meetings
B.1.3.2 Requirements of the Colorado Sunshine Act of 1972

B.1.4 Powers Delegated to the President by the Board

B.2 Internal Structure of the University

B.2.1 The Four Branches of Colorado State University
B.2.3 Collegiate Structure and the Graduate School
B.2.4 Council of Deans
B.2.5 Advisory Committee on Undergraduate Affairs
B.2.6 University Centers, Institutes and Other Special Units

B.2.6.1 Definitions
B.2.6.2 Procedures for Approval of CIOSUs
B.2.6.3 CIOSU Oversight
B.2.6.4 Guidelines for Preparing Proposals for CIOSU Establishment
B.2.6.5 Procedures for Periodic Evaluation of CIOSUs
B.2.6.6 Scheduling Periodic Evaluations
B.2.6.7 Courses and Programs of Study
B.2.6.8 Non-Profit Corporations

B.2.7 University Organizational Chart

Section B. Organization of the University

B.1 The Governing Board: The Board of Governors of the Colorado State University System (last revised June 22, 2006)

As the governing body of the University, the Board of Governors of the Colorado State University System (hereafter referred to as the Board) addresses questions of broad institutional policy. The Board is responsible for the selection of the President and, in conjunction with the advice and recommendation of the President, approves the appointment and salaries of the Provost, the vice presidents, and, if requested by the Board, other faculty members and/or administrative professionals who report directly to the President (“senior administrators”). The Board approves the institutional budget and exercises broad policy control. All University owned lands are under Board control. With faculty members’ advice, the Board approves the curriculum and confers appropriate degrees or testimonials.

B.1.1 Membership and Term of Office (last revised August 2, 2013)

Membership and term of office for the Board is stated in Section 23-30-101 of the Colorado Revised Statutes.

B.1.2 Vacancies and Compensation(last revised August 2, 2013)

Both the filling of vacancies in the Board membership and the provision for service by members without compensation are set forth in Section 23-30-103 of the Colorado Revised Statutes.

B.1.3 Meetings of the Board(last revised August 2, 2013)

B.1.3.1 Scheduling of Board Meetings (last revised August 2, 2013)

The provisions for scheduling Board Meetings are stated in Section 23-30-104 of the Colorado Revised Statutes.

B.1.3.2 Requirements of the Colorado Sunshine Act of 1972 (last revised June 17, 2003)

The “Open Meetings Law” (24-6-401, et seq., of the Colorado Revised Statutes of 2002) requires that all meetings of two (2) or more Board members at which any public business is discussed, or at which any formal action may be taken, be open to the public, except as otherwise provided. Any such meeting shall be held only after full and timely notice to the public. The Secretary of the Board maintains a list of persons who request notification of meetings and provides reasonable advance notification to such persons of public meetings. The minutes of the Board shall be promptly recorded and open to public inspection.

B.1.4 Powers Delegated to the President by the Board (last revised June 22, 2006)

The President is the University’s chief executive officer and is responsible for ensuring that rules and regulations of the Board, the faculty members, and the Manual are implemented. Certain personnel powers have been delegated by the Board to the President. These powers include the following:

a. The power to hire, renew, decline to renew, or terminate faculty members and administrative professional employees of the University other than the Provost, the vice presidents, and, if requested by the Board, senior administrators (as defined in Section B.1).

b. The power to make performance-based adjustments to compensation and salary and to approve supplemental salary.

c. The power to grant or deny applications for tenure and/or promotion.

d. The power to approve applications and agreements for transitional retirement.

With Board approval, the President may further delegate some of these personnel powers to other officers of the University. The President has delegated most personnel decisions (but not termination of employment) to the Provost and vice presidents for the administrative units under their authority.

The Board may, from time to time, elect to exercise any authority it has delegated to the President (and which may have been further delegated to the Provost and the vice presidents). All personnel power delegated to the President, and all personnel power further delegated to the Provost and the vice presidents, must be exercised in compliance with applicable procedural provisions of this Manual.

B.2 Internal Structure of the University

B.2.1 The Four Branches of Colorado State University

Colorado State University is organized into four major administrative areas which reflect its status as a land-grant institution. Both domestic and overseas work assignments are done through these administrative units.

a. Resident Instruction provides for the basic academic program, including Continuing Education.

b. The Experiment Station is devoted to research in biological, physical, and social sciences. Off-campus research centers are maintained in centers distributed throughout the State.

c. The Extension employs an off-campus statewide system to transfer knowledge from the University to the people and encourage its use in the solution of practical, individual, or group problems. Federal, state, and county governments cooperate to support this function.

d. The Colorado State Forest Service devotes its efforts to fire protection, insect and disease control, forest management, and tree distribution. Headquarters are on the campus and district foresters are located in key locations in the State.


The CSU STRATA is incorporated separately. The CSU STRATA performs certain functions in regard to research activities of the University.

B.2.3 Collegiate Structure and the Graduate School (last revised February 6, 2013)

The University offers academic instruction through eight (8) colleges and the Graduate School. The Colleges are Agricultural Sciences; Health and Human Sciences; Business; Engineering; Liberal Arts; Natural Resources; Natural Sciences; and Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.

Organizational lines of authority and responsibility pass from individual faculty members through the department head to the dean of the college involved.1   The dean has the responsibility for coordinating the activities of the college with the Provost and the Vice President for Research (hereinafter referred to as “VPR”), who in turn are responsible to the President and the Board.

B.2.4 Council of Deans (last revised December 3, 2021)

The Council of Deans serves as a deliberative body to provide guidance and advice to the Provost. The Provost shall serve as the Chair. If the Provost is unavailable for a meeting, the Provost shall designate one (1) of the vice provosts to Chair that meeting. The other regular members of the Council of Deans shall be the deans of the eight (8) colleges, the Dean of the Graduate School, the Dean of the Libraries, and the Chair of Faculty Council. The ex officio members of the Council of Deans shall be the vice provosts, the vice presidents, and the Chair of the Faculty Council Committee on Strategic and Financial Planning.

B.2.5 Advisory Committee on Undergraduate Affairs (last revised June 4, 2008)

The Advisory Committee on Undergraduate Affairs (ACUA) advises the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Affairs, Vice President for Student Affairs, and Vice President for Enrollment and Access. The ACUA addresses issues concerning undergraduate academics, student life, enrollment, and access that affect the quality of the undergraduate experience and the success of undergraduate students. The ACUA links University offices that support the undergraduate experience and acts as a deliberative body for policies proposed by other entities (e.g., the Council of Deans, Faculty Council, the Colorado General Assembly, and the Colorado Commission on Higher Education). The Vice Provost for Undergraduate Affairs shall serve as the Chair of ACUA. Other regular members shall include the Vice President for Student Affairs, the Vice President for Enrollment and Access, one (1) associate/assistant dean from each of the eight (8) colleges and the Libraries, the Vice Chair of Faculty Council, and any other as deemed appropriate by the ACUA.

B.2.6 University Centers, Institutes, and Other Special Units (last revised June 21, 2011)

Centers, Institutes, and Other Special Units (hereinafter referred to as “CIOSUs”) exist to promote teaching or research, provide academic support services, and/or perform service or outreach functions consistent with the mission of the University. The enhancement of undergraduate and graduate education is an important function of CIOSUs. However, CIOSUs do not have faculty positions that exist outside regular academic departments.

B.2.6.1 Definitions

The CIOSUs are units which extend beyond a single academic department. These units may be labeled “Center,” “Institute,” “Office,” “Facility,” “Program,” or “Laboratory,” but other labels may also be used as appropriate. A unit which is completely contained within a single academic department does not need to apply for CIOSU status as long as it indicates its departmental affiliation whenever its title is used.

B.2.6.2 Procedures for Approval of CIOSUs (last revised August 8, 2014)

Procedures for approval are intended to facilitate the establishment of appropriate CIOSUs and to avoid the creation of programs that unnecessarily duplicate existing programs. Faculty members shall submit a proposal for the establishment of a CIOSU to their department head(s) and dean(s) for initial review and signature.

Administrative approval for a proposed CIOSU rests with the Overseeing Administrator, who may be the appropriate department head, dean, provost or vice president. It is important that the Overseeing Administrator be clearly identified and recorded as such on the CIOSU application form along with the required signature.

The proposal shall then be forwarded to the Office of Faculty Council, which shall forward a copy of the proposal to the Provost. The Provost shall act as or assign the Responsible Administrator for the proposed CIOSU based on its primary mission. The Responsible Administrator shall then review the proposal. If the Responsible Administrator endorses the proposal, the Office of Faculty Council shall then forward the proposal to the appropriate standing committee(s). If the standing committee(s) approve the proposal, then the Chair of Faculty Council shall forward this approval to the Responsible Administrator. The Faculty Council Executive Committee may act for the standing committee(s) during the summer. The final decision on approval of the CIOSU shall be made by the Responsible Administrator.

In order to facilitate the funding of pending proposals, conditional approval for a CIOSU may be granted by the Responsible Administrator at the time of the Responsible Administrator’s official review and endorsement.

If the CIOSU proposal requests University resources (see Section J.2) other than faculty time, funding from external agencies, and cost recovery activities, then the Committee on Strategic and Financial Planning shall be one of the standing committees that reviews the proposal.

B.2.6.3 CIOSU Oversight

Administrative oversight of CIOSU rests with the appropriate department head, dean, Provost, or vice president (hereinafter referred to as the “Overseeing Administrator”). Final authority for a CIOSU rests with the Responsible Administrator.

B.2.6.4 Guidelines for Preparing Proposals for CIOSU Establishment (last revised May 2, 2007)

Faculty members interested in creating a CIOSU should prepare a proposal that addresses the following items:

a. The name of the CIOSU and the name(s) of its Administrative Director(s);

b. The mission of the proposed CIOSU and how this mission relates to the mission and strategic goals of Colorado State University;

c. A statement of the goals and objectives of the proposed CIOSU;

d. Evidence that the proposed CIOSU does not duplicate or compete with existing CIOSUs or academic programs and, if applicable, how it will be coordinated with other CIOSUs with complementary functions;

e. A description of the organizational and administrative structure and responsibilities, the faculty members involved, how the CIOSU will be internally governed, and the identification of the Overseeing Administrator; and

f. A list of funding sources and amounts, space, personnel, and equipment required to initiate and sustain the CIOSU for a period of at least five (5) years.

Each CIOSU must be administered by a person whose responsibilities include assuring that the CIOSU conducts its operations consistent with its mission and goals and in accordance with University policies and applicable laws, and that all required reports are submitted. The method for the selection of the Administrative Director of the CIOSU shall be stated in the program proposal. Appointment of the Administrative Director shall be made by the President or by the Responsible Administrator if the President has so delegated the authority. This position is “at will,” and can be terminated by the President at any time. This appointment shall consider recommendations by the faculty members in the CIOSU, the Overseeing Administrator, and the Responsible Administrator.

B.2.6.5 Procedures for Periodic Evaluation of CIOSUs (last revised August 8, 2014)

a. Biennial Reports.

The Administrative Director of each CIOSU shall submit a brief biennial report of its activities and accomplishments to the Overseeing Administrator and the Responsible Administrator. Copies of all biennial reports shall be deposited in the Office of the VPR, who shall be responsible for maintaining an updated list of all CIOSUs.

These reports shall include each of the following:

1. A list of current CIOSU faculty members and other personnel;

2. A brief description of the activities, services, or research performed, as related to the function/mission of the CIOSU in the past twenty-four (24) months;

3. A budget summary for the previous twenty-four (24) months;

4. A brief list of accomplishments and contributions, such as grants and contracts, refereed and non-refereed publications, and effects on teaching and outreach in the past twenty-four (24) months;

5. Plans for the next twenty-four (24) months.

b. After receiving the report, the Overseeing Administrator shall recommend one (1) of three (3) possible courses of action to the Committee on University Programs:

1. Continue the CIOSU with a recommendation either to reappoint the Administrative Director or to appoint a new Administrative Director, and with suggested changes (if any) in the mission, goals, objectives, and/or organization of the CIOSU.

2. Consolidate with existing CIOSUs with similar missions and goals. This recommendation shall require submission and approval of a new proposal for the consolidated unit.

3. Terminate the CIOSU. If there is loss of funding or key faculty members, or the CIOSU is otherwise deemed to be no longer appropriate, the recommendation may be made to eliminate the CIOSU.

c. If the Committee on University Programs finds the biennial report of a CIOSU under review incomplete or deficient in any significant way (as to the criteria listed under B.2.6.5 a.) or without the requisite recommendation and signature of its Overseeing Administrator it may further recommend that the CIOSU in question be discontinued as a university listed CIOSU. In this event the chair of the committee on university programs, in consultation with the Responsible Administrator, shall communicate the outcome in writing to the CIOSU director/s and the Overseeing Administrator, and invite a resubmission of the report or acceptance of its recommendation, with reference to the policies and procedures for CIOSUs oversight and review (B.2.6.3).

The Committee on University Programs shall report its recommendation to Faculty Council. After action by Faculty Council, the final recommendation for action shall be reported to the Responsible Administrator, who shall then decide what action to take.

B.2.6.6 Scheduling Periodic Evaluations

The Responsible Administrator for each CIOSU shall schedule the biennial reports of the CIOSU.

B.2.6.7 Courses and Programs of Study (new section added June 21, 2011)

A CIOSU may have a role in courses and/or programs of study (undergraduate majors and minors and graduate degrees and interdisciplinary studies programs) offered by departments, colleges, and/or the Office of the Provost. However, if a CIOSU wants to offer courses and/or house programs of study itself, then it must apply to become a Special Academic Unit as described in Section C.2.8.

B.2.6.8 Non-Profit Corporations

The formation of Special Units as separate non-profit corporations is a complex process with many additional procedures and regulations, and requires approval by the Board. If faculty members wish to create a CIOSU as a non-profit corporation, they must work closely with the Responsible Administrator and the Office of the General Counsel to ensure that all requirements are met. Approval of the formation of a CIOSU does not imply the approval of the formation of a non-profit corporation.

B.2.7 University Organizational Chart

University Organizational Chart

1Throughout the Manual the term department head is used and is meant to include department chairs and/or heads of both academic and administrative departments and the directors of schools.