Skip to Content, Navigation, or Footer.
A spirit that is not afraid

Faculty vote against motion questioning provost's legitimacy

<p>The Auburn University sign sits in front of the University's historic Samford Hall.</p>

The Auburn University sign sits in front of the University's historic Samford Hall.

CORRECTION: This article previously said, "An initial vote to object to the consideration of the motion failed, but a second vote along the same passed with 88% voting in the affirmative." This is not correct and has therefore been removed. 

At their Tuesday, March 26, biannual meeting, the university faculty voted against a motion submitted by Michael Stern, associate professor of economics, regarding the legitimacy of Vini Nathan's position as provost and senior vice president of academic affairs. 

The proclamation, which was introduced at the Oct. 24, 2023, meeting identifies potential discrepancies, according to Stern, in the search process for the provost position when it was last conducted. Initial advertisements for the position said the interim provost, who at the time was Nathan, would not be eligible for the permanent position. 

University faculty met via Zoom at 3:30 p.m. on Tuesday, March 26. Stern's proclamation was the only action item slated for a vote. The voting system was conducted via an "honor system," according to Lisa Kensler, the faculty senate chair.

In the proclamation, Stern alleges Nathan, "...should not be considered the legitimate provost of Auburn University" based on the language used in the advertisements for the position as well as university press releases. Prior to assuming the interim provost position, Nathan served as dean of the College of Architecture, Design and Construction. 

The final vote, which ended at 4:55 p.m., was overwhelmingly against Stern's proclamation. 69% of the respondents voted "No (do not support the Proclamation motion)," 13% voted "Yes (this Proclamation motion is supported)," 5% voted to "Abstain (formally decline to vote either for or against a motion)." The remaining 13% were "Guest - ineligible to vote since not a member of AU Faculty."

The Auburn Plainsman will continue to monitor this story and update accordingly.

Connor Copeland | Campus Editor

Connor Copeland, freshman in English literature, has been with The Plainsman since fall 2023

Share and discuss “Faculty vote against motion questioning provost's legitimacy” on social media.