Shared Governance Definition
Shared governance at St. Edward’s University is a fundamental commitment by faculty, staff,
students, administration, and trustees to collaborate in a mutually supportive and productive
manner to advance the mission and vision of the University. The Faculty Senate, Student
Government Association, Staff Council, Administration and Board of Trustees are the shared
governance bodies at St. Edwards’s University. Collectively, the shared governance bodies
support the consultative decision-making processes that guide the university’s strategic plan.
This shared decision-making is rooted in the values that are most important to St. Edward’s
University: authenticity, mutual respect, shared purpose, and commitment to Holy Cross.
Shared Governance Characteristics
- Communication - To effectively work together, timely communication is critical.
Communication encompasses many facets, including consultation and collaboration at
the earliest possible moment and in a transparent and meaningful way.
- Shared Purpose and Importance of Community - Shared governance partners commit to
maintaining a collaborative, productive environment with a focus on mutual respect in
support of the St. Edward’s University mission.
- Diverse Perspectives - Understanding that all constituents are likely affected in different
ways by shared decision-making, it is important that diverse perspectives are heard and
respected to ensure the most informed decisions are made on discrete issues.
- Trust: The entire community relies on the confidence that is placed in shared
governance, which is paramount to the success of the university.
- Transparency and Authenticity: For shared decision-making to be successful, shared
governance partners respond to each other honestly and respectfully to ensure
productive collaboration and a feedback-rich process.
Shared Governance Guiding Principles
- Shared governance at St. Edward’s University is used, subject to and respecting
University policies and procedures, and the constituent groups’ respective by-laws, to
obtain and respond to diverse perspectives when implementing new policies and
procedures or review of current ones.
- Holy Cross values are the core of the St. Edward’s identity and serve as an anchor for
the decision-making process.
- Shared governance includes appropriate and timely consultation that is followed with
meaningful communication. This strengthens trust and engagement through an ongoing
commitment and determination to the principles of shared governance.
- Leadership for all shared governance bodies regularly consult with one another at
appropriate intervals to ensure inclusiveness and justice across the community in pursuit
of our common goals.
- All shared governance bodies commit to working with one another within this framework
to appropriately review policies and procedures with a focus on greater collaboration and
We intentionally commit ourselves to working collegially with one another on the decisions we
face, as members of the University. Shared governance is a complex process that necessitates
engagement throughout the University around regular review of policy, ongoing dialogue and
Shared governance at St. Edward’s University should mirror the democratic process by
including individual participation, responsibility, and accountability across diverse groups of
stakeholders at the University.
As shared governance bodies, we commit to regular review of this statement every three years.
This document was endorsed by the following bodies Feb. 23, 2023:
- Faculty Senate
- Student Government Association
- Staff Council
- President’s Cabinet
- Board of Trustees
Next Statement Review: January 2025
- Marianne Ward-Peradoza, PhD, Provost
- Mary Rist, PhD, Faculty Senate Representative
- Michelle Flores, Student Government Association Representative
- Pete Cervantes, Student Government Association Representative
- Gilbert Contreras, Staff Council Representative
- Steve Shadowen (ex-officio), Board of Trustees Chair
- David Abercia, PhD, (convener), Chief of Staff