July 29, 2016
Dear TAs and AIs,
Next Monday, on August 1, the campus carry law goes into effect. Recently, I sent an email to faculty about campus carry, and received numerous messages also from graduate students that have helped me think through this complex issue.
Many of you have concerns with this new law; concerns I share. Some expressed your clear dissatisfaction with the law and voiced unease with the policies the university has adopted to comply. Many of you had very specific questions looking for guidance about how to implement the new policies.
Your thoughtful questions raised issues that were not addressed in the previous message, and I asked the Implementation Task Force to help me develop additional guidance.
What does this mean in my classroom? How should I provide oral notice to my students? What about the syllabus? These are just a few of the many questions I received and I have thought about them extensively.
To everyone who took the time to share your thoughts with me, thank you. You have posed questions shared by many graduate students and faculty.
Based on this feedback, we have created a detailed, faculty-specific FAQ document, which includes information relevant to TAs and AIs, addressing the questions raised. While they may not answer every question posed, we have tried to address the most frequently encountered issues.
- Download FAQs as a PDF (EID required)
- View the faculty FAQ webpage (EID required)
- Visit the campus carry webpage for faculty
Many graduate students and faculty were also curious how students would learn about the campus carry policies. Based on your feedback, the Implementation Task Force has improved information for students. This includes a webpage on the campus carry website geared towards students, and an updated training module that emphasizes critical information about the law and new policies. This includes information about exclusion zones, oral notification for faculty offices, and urging those who choose to carry to think through their day.
I will also take this opportunity to let you know that during this process, I have tried to put myself in your shoes and I will continue to do so. The safety of our students, faculty, and staff is my first priority. And as we work together to navigate the implementation of this new law, I will not lose focus on supporting the academic mission of the university, promoting your work and making sure you are able to do what you came here to accomplish.
When this new law goes into effect, I am certain more questions will be raised and we will need to address them. When you have questions, please let us know. We will continue to update the faculty FAQ document as new issues are brought to our attention.
Moving forward, I will ensure we do our very best to respond to your concerns quickly and responsibly, and I look forward to getting to know you all better in the coming months.
Executive Vice President and Provost
The University of Texas at Austin