Stages to Developing and Maintaining a Successful WSU University Center


University centers are designed specifically to address a research, teaching or service issue of an interdisciplinary nature. By interdisciplinary, we mean an area involving several disciplines or academic units. An academic university center's (type I) primary focus is on academics whereas a research university center's (type II) primary focus is to conduct and disseminate research.

  1. Discuss with colleagues develop a support network
  2. Confer with chair of your department to make sure you will receive her/his support
  3. Confer with dean make sure you have at least her/his verbal approval at this stage you will need written approval later on.
  4. Resources make sure that you will have the resources available to establish and maintain a center. General Funds unless specifically approved as seed money should not be considered as part of the resources base.

Proposal Guidelines, Charter

  1. Choose a name the name of the center will reflect the center at a local, state, national and global levels. Therefore, choose a name that will represent the center effectively and whose acronym does not have a pejorative connotation. At WSU, the words center and institute are interchangeable. It is a personal preference which one to use.
  2. Identify a liaison to the Provost's or Vice President for Research's Office, as appropriate. This includes, where possible, an administrative liaison as well. 
  3. Complete proposal using Guidelines for Proposal Development for a New Center
  4. Charter the Board of Governors (BOG) has adopted the language in the sample charter. Please use this format until such a time when the BOG may reconsider the current language.


  1. Five stages you will be notified at each stage of approval. Do not assume that the proposal has been approved once the CIAC has recommended approval. It must be approved by the president (see "d") before it can go to the BOG
  1. Center and Institute Advisory Committee-II
  2. Policy Committee, Academic Senate
  3. Final approval by provost or vice president for research, as appropriate
  4. Final approval to send before the Board of Governors president
  5. Board of Governors

Post Approval

  1. Web page development
  2. Rechartering things to keep in mind:
  1. Budget keep a detailed budget. Use the original budget sheet as a guideline for the data you will need. Keep annual records.
  2. Advisory boards keep them current and informed
  3. Every six years, unless shorter time has been specified.
  4. Keep current on self-study guidelines as this makes the self-study process easier to prepare.