Welcome Fall 2012- Page 2
In my address to the Regents, I emphasized the fact that obtaining a solid undergraduate education cannot be accomplished quickly and it requires hard work. However, it should not be a marathon, and we need to be willing to be accountable, revise curricula and explore alternative delivery methods without sacrificing quality. You all need to be well supported to do this. Higher education administrators, university faculty and staff, and state legislators need to work together to ensure that public education is delivered in an efficient and affordable manner so that all of our citizens across the state have access to a top-notch system. Together we can support and maintain programs that will produce highly educated, technically skilled graduates who can think critically, problem solve, work civilly with others and have a greater appreciation for and an increased knowledge of the sciences, social sciences, arts and humanities.
Last May I posted an e-mail on the COLS list about a 24-hour period, in which I had the privilege to:
• hear the four finalists of the COMM 111 speech competition give their speeches;
• listen to a reading of an original play written by a Radio/TV/Film and Theatre student and read by student actors;
• travel to Taycheedah Correctional Institute and hear two students speak about our Inside/Out program;
• witness the work of several students who spent hours helping in the labs, animal colony and other facilities in Halsey basement due to flooding;
• enjoy a senior English major's reading of two original poems; and
• sit in on a preview of a junior music major's recital that she would be performing the following weekend.
These are but a few of the things our students do. We certainly have been through tough times, and I worry that there may be some yet ahead. However, I truly want to thank all of you as I know that members of the COLS faculty and staff are directly responsible for what I witnessed over that 24-hour period -- and for so much more over my years as dean. I am so appreciative of all of your efforts that lead to such amazing student success.
Seeing our students succeed is a fulfilling and moving experience for me. It is the reason that many of us come to work each day. Let’s make an effort to celebrate more of our students’ successes through the COLS list serve, our web site, newsletters and other venues.
During my time in the Dean’s Office, many of you have worked extremely hard on university-wide comprehensive curricular change. This began with the work of the Liberal Education Reform Team and the adoption of our University Essential Learning Outcomes for Students. It peaked with the adoption of a new general education program called the Universities Studies Program scheduled for a Fall 2013 implementation. This program is the result of the work of dedicated faculty and staff who are committed to increasing retention and to increasing the quality of the student experience, and it is centered on offering students a more intentional and integrated college experience.