University Procedure #518
Section 1. Policy
Metropolitan State University supports the continued professional growth and development of its employees. This regulation sets forth the process for the granting of Professional Improvement Funds (PIF) to foster that growth and development.
Section 2. Authority
This procedure is issued pursuant to the Agreement between MnSCU and MSUAASF, Article 15, Section B (Professional Improvement Fund).
Section 3. Effective Date
This procedure shall become effective immediately, and shall remain in effect until modified or expressly revoked.
Section 4. Responsibility
Responsibility for implementation of this procedure is assigned jointly to the MSUAASF Executive Committee and the Director of Personnel acting as the president's designee.
Section 5. Implementation
1. Eligible employees are all employees filling positions in the MSUAASF unit.
2. Professional Improvement Funds (PIF) are grants for the purpose of professional improvement, MSUAASF member development, staff training and similar kinds of development programs for MSUAASF members.
3. Professional Development Funds (PDF) are an additional source of support for professional development, as defined in the MnSCU/MSUAASF agreement Article 15, Section A, Subdivision 2. See MSUAASF Professional Development Funds Guidelines for procedural information about PDF.
1. Funds are allocated to the university based on the number of FTE employees in the unit. Available dollar amounts will be announced after system-wide calculations are completed at the MnSCU office.
2. Should the MSUAASF unit wish to use professional improvement funds for a professional development retreat, or engage in other group development activity, the proposal shall be presented for discussion at Meet and Confer.
3. Consistent with the Agreement, PIF monies may be carried over from the first year of the Agreement to the second, but must be used within the biennium.
4. Unlike Professional Development Funds (PDF), Professional Improvement Funds (PIF) are not allocated to individuals. The MSUAASF Professional Development Committee may plan group development activities for the year and reserve funds for that purpose. The funds remaining are available for distribution to individual MSUAASF members in accordance with these guidelines.
Proposed professional improvement activities will be approved if the university president or designee deems them to be in the best interest of the university in improving the job-related skills and competence of the MSUAASF member and if funding is available.
D. Process for Individual Grants:
- Employees must complete an application form listing relevant information about the professional improvement opportunity and submit it, along with supporting documentation, e.g., conference brochure or course description, to the supervisor for recommendation and signature. The application and other documents are then forwarded to the MSUAASF treasurer for review of available funds. If funds are available and the request for PIF funds is for $350 or less, the treasurer signs and forwards the materials to the division head for recommendation and signature.
The signatures of the supervisor and division head indicate their assessment that the proposed use of funds is for appropriate work-related development activities and that the employee will be granted release time with pay to participate in these activities.
2. If the employee's request for PIF funds exceeds $350.00, the MSUAASF treasurer sends the request to the MSUAASF Professional Development Committee for review and recommendation to the MSUAASF president.
3. Following signature by the MSUAASF president, application materials are forwarded, with recommendations, to the division head for approval. If the request is for PIF fund purchases exceeding $350 or if out-of-state travel is included, the president's signature is also required.
4. The division head's office will return the original approved application form with attachments to the applicant, and will send copies of the approved application form to the supervisor and the MSUAASF treasurer.
5. The applicant is responsible for completing and securing approval of all necessary paperwork in accordance with Metro State's procedures.
6. Records will be maintained by the MSUAASF treasurer.
E. Obligations of the Grant Recipient:
A recipient of a PIF grant is obligated to use the funds for the purposes specified in the application and, within 30 days of the completion of the professional improvement activity, to submit a written report to his/her supervisor outlining the activity completed and analyzing the impact on job related skills and competence.
Section 6. Review
This regulation shall be reviewed each time a new MnSCU/MSUAASF collective bargaining agreement is signed.
Section 7. Approval
Issued on this 10th day of March, 1997.
Susan A. Cole, President