Professional Issues and Ethics Committee (PIE)
The Professional Issues and Ethics Committee (PIE) serves as an educational resource for the department concerning professional issues and ethics with the aim of preventing serious ethical and boundary problems. The committee provides an entry point for questions and consultation concerning professional issues and will funnel queries to appropriate committees as needed. Professional issues that may be directed to this committee include (but are not limited to) issues concerning boundary issues (between faculty, graduate students, undergraduate students, and staff), authorship issues, concerns regarding exploitation, sexual harassment, career choice, development and management, etc. The committee provides informal feedback to faculty, students, and staff concerning questions that may arise.
- A confidential resource
- A place where you can voice your concerns and learn about your options
- Free of judgment
- Not the police of human resources of the department
- Not able to guarantee a solution to the person/group/situation causing you the problem
- Talk through ways to deal with a conflict
- Serve as a conversation mediator
- Provide emotional support and validation
- Consult about phrasing of emails or other correspondence
- Give career choice options and advice
2018-2019 PIE Committee members
From Left to Right: Jonathan Butner(Faculty), Ty McKinney(Student), Erika Roberge(Student), Danielle Geerling(Student), Nila Shakiba(Student), David Sanbonmatsu(Faculty)
Frequently Asked Questions
When you feel that an objective, third party member would be helpful
- Consultation about phrasing emails, etc.
- Talking through ways to communicate your conflict with people directly involved
- Mediation between you and those involved in the conflict
- Emotional support/validation
When you would like an issue/problem communicated to the Chair
- PIE can pass along concerns and report problems to the Chair
- We may not be able to keep this information confidential if we are mandated to report it (e.g., sexual assault)
- You choose a PIE member to talk about the situation
- PIE will meet confidentially with you in a place you choose
- PIE will not take notes or share any information with others
- PIE will give you several options:
- Hear your side of the situation
- Give advice as to next steps
- Sit in on meetings with you
- Members of PIE will review the information and contact you within 48 hours
- If the information describes something illegal, it will be reported to the department head
We always recommend coming to PIE in person -- contact any member of the committee to request an appointment.
The University of Utah has a variety of resources available to assist you with problems ranging from reporting harassment and incidents of misconduct, to counseling and mental health services, and professional assistance concerning payment and authorship issues. Click here for our resources page.
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