Corrective Action, Discipline, and/or Dismissal

  1. The University may impose corrective action, or dismiss a Postdoctoral Researcher when, in its reasoned judgment, the Postdoctoral Researcher’s performance or conduct merits the action. The University may take other actions consistent with the requirements of any applicable extramural funding agencies.
  2. Each division or school may establish and issue additional procedures for instituting corrective action and dismissal of Postdoctoral Scholars in accord with applicable University policies and with the standards and procedures set forth in this section.
  3. Corrective action, designed to identify and correct problems that affect a Postdoctoral Researcher’s performance, is the institution of one or more of the following:
    1. Counseling or verbal warning,
    2. Written warning, which is a communication that informs the Postdoctoral Researcher of the nature of the inadequate performance or misconduct; requirements for continuation in the training program; and the probable consequence of continued inadequate performance or misconduct.
    3. Reduction in salary for a stated period of time.  The amount and duration of the reduced salary or stipend shall be specified.
    4. Suspension, which is removal from the training program without pay for a stated period of time.  The terms of a suspension may include loss of normal privileges, such as access to University property and parking, IT and library privileges.
  4. Depending on the situation, any or all of the above forms of corrective action may be repeated, omitted, or taken out of sequence; however, notwithstanding anything in Sections 5-8 immediately below, the University has the right to initiate immediate termination if, in its reasoned judgment, such action is warranted (e.g., a situation involving workplace violence, misappropriation of or compromise to research data). Each case is considered on an individual basis and normally involves advance consultation with decanal academic and administrative personnel
  5. Dismissal is the termination of a Postdoctoral Researcher’s appointment initiated by the University, before the appointment end date, when, in the reasoned judgment of the University, the Postdoctoral Researcher’s conduct or performance does not justify continuation.
  6. Before instituting corrective action, discipline, or dismissal, informal efforts to resolve the problem should be made, where appropriate and practicable.
  7. A Postdoctoral Researcher may be placed on immediate leave with pay, without prior written notice, for the purpose of reviewing or investigating conduct that in the University’s judgment requires removing the Postdoctoral Researcher from University premises.  While on such leave, the Postdoctoral Researcher’s return to University premises without written permission may create independent grounds for dismissal.  Such leave shall be confirmed in writing after it is instituted and may include interim loss of other privileges (e.g., IT access).
  8. Except as set forth in Section 4 above, before initiating the actions of suspension without pay, reduction in salary, dismissal, or other actions consistent with the requirements of extramural fellowship agencies, the University shall provide a written notice to the Postdoctoral Researcher. The notice shall state:
    1. the intended action and the proposed effective date;
    2. the reason(s) for the action, including a description of the inadequate performance or misconduct and any warnings that have been given;
    3. the Postdoctoral Researcher’s right to respond either orally or in writing within five calendar days of the date of issuance of the written notice;
    4. the name of the person to whom the Postdoctoral Researcher should respond. 

No notice is required for counseling, a verbal or written warning, or suspension with pay.

A Postdoctoral Researcher who receives a written notice shall be entitled to respond, either orally or in writing, within five calendar days of the date of issuance of the notice.  The response, if any, shall be reviewed and considered by the administration.

If the University decides to implement the corrective action or dismissal following the review of a timely response, if any, from the Postdoctoral Researcher, the University shall issue, as soon as practicable but normally within five calendar days of the decision a written notice to the Postdoctoral Researcher of the decision and the effective date of the corrective action or dismissal.

This written notice normally may not include an action more severe than that described in the initial notice.

A copy of the written notice shall also be placed in the Postdoctoral Researcher’s personnel file.

Upon written request and before expiration of any time limits stated in this section, the Provost or his or her designee may grant extensions, as appropriate.

Statutes contained in the University Statutes related to termination of employment that are applicable to “Faculty and Other Academic Appointees” do not apply to Postdoctoral Researchers. Likewise, termination- and discipline-related personnel policies for staff employees (e.g., policies U208, U703, U704, etc.), do not apply to Postdoctoral Researchers. When authority to appoint Postdoctoral Researchers has been expressly delegated by the Provost to a dean, the Provost is not required to approve dismissal. The Provost will not review an action of dismissal unless he/she agrees to do so upon the request of the cognizant dean.