The Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System consists of 18 members, 16 of whom are appointed by the Governor, subject to confirmation by the Senate. Of these 16 members, 14 serve staggered, seven-year terms and two are ex officio members. The two ex officio members are the state superintendent of public instruction and the president or a designee of the Wisconsin Technical College System Board. Two UW System students are appointed to the Board for two-year terms; one of the two is a non-traditional student.

The Board is responsible for establishing policies and rules for governing the UW System, planning to meet future needs for university education in the state, setting admission standards and policies, reviewing and approving university budgets, and establishing the regulatory framework within which individual units operate. The Board appoints the President of the University of Wisconsin System and the Chancellors of the 13 universities. The Board grants tenure appointments to faculty members.

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