University Senate Centennial Banner


The 2012-13 academic year marked a century of shared governance at the University.

In a series of University Senate meetings, Professor Marti Hope Gonzales moderated members of the university community in discussions that address fiscal, technological, and academic challenges and opportunities.

Where have we been? Where are we now? What are the myriad challenges the University community will face in the future? How can shared governance shape thoughtful and efficient decisions as we move into the next hundred years?

Hy Berman reflects on 100 years of Senate history

In an interview by Professor Emeritus Victor Bloomfield, Professor Emeritus Hy Berman discusses the history of the Senate and his almost 60 years of involvement. The interview has been broken into seven segments, available below as YouTube videos.

Part 1: Introductions - University of Minnesota Senate History and Future

Introduces each professor emeritus and his background at the University.

Part 2: The Progressive Era & Early Years of University Governance

University events and issues during the Progressive Era and the early years of the University Senate.

Part 3: WW II and the Cold War - University Governance Falters

Threats to academic freedom during World War II and the Cold War.

Part 4: The Vietnam Era: Governance Responds to Student Concerns

Campus activism during the Vietnam War and the response of the University Senate to student concerns.

Part 5 - The Tenure Wars: Defending Academic Freedom

Attempt in the mid-1990s to end tenure at the University and the Faculty Senate response.

Part 6 - Governance Expands: Embracing Multiple Constituencies

Expansion of the University Senate to include students and staff.

Part 7 - Looking Ahead: Open Sesame!

Current challenges and the future of governance at the University.

Hy Berman speaks on Almanac

Video: Hy Berman speaks on Almanac

Article in the Minnesota Daily

On September 10, 2012, an article appeared in the Minnesota Daily regarding the Senate Centennial. The full text is available here.

Senate Commentaries

The Senate, Academic Freedom, and the Importance of Governance: An Historical Overview

Commentary by Hy Berman, Professor Emeritus of History

Faculty Governace: A Reflection

Commentary by Victor Bloomfield, Professor of Biochemistry, Molecular Biology and Biophysics

Senate Minutes Abstracts