UT System implements Rooney Rule system-wide, effective immediately

Caleb Wong

The UT System took a play from the NFL on Thursday to eliminate gendered differences in pay and promote faculty and staff diversity.

All System institutions must invite minority candidates to interview during the final rounds of interviews for “senior administrative positions” and submit a plan to the System to end the gender pay gap in five years, effective immediately. The plan is based off the Rooney Rule, a policy which requires NFL coaches to interview minority candidates for head coaching jobs.

Chancellor William McRaven said in a statement that the rule would ensure faculty and staff at each System institution would reflect the diverse student bodies they serve.

“We want to ensure that qualified women and minorities have an opportunity to be considered for every senior level position,” McRaven said in a statement. “Making sure our leadership, faculty and staff reflect the changing look of Texas is not just about fairness. It’s also about effectiveness. Change starts at the top. We need administrators, campus leaders and faculty whom women and minority students can look to as role models and mentors, and who better understand the students they’re serving and where
they’re from.”

Across all UT System institutions, 53 percent of the students are women compared to 42 percent of the faculty, and 39 percent of students identify as Hispanic compared to 11 percent of the faculty, according to a UT System press release. Women faculty members are paid 90 percent of what their male colleagues are paid at doctoral institutions, according to data released in 2014 by the American Association of University Professors.