The University of Wisconsin Oshkosh’s latest accountability report is hot off the press, and it once again affirms the progress the state’s third-largest, second-fastest-growing university is making in the areas of inclusiveness, student civic engagement and academic excellence.
“Investing in Wisconsin’s Future: A Growth Agenda Accountability Report, 2010-11” is the latest edition of UW System’s annual, campus-by-campus strategic plan update – a multifaceted synopsis of how state universities are carrying out seven “core strategies” under the broader system Growth Agenda.
“We are holding ourselves accountable for retention and achievement for all students,” said UW Oshkosh Assistant Vice Chancellor for Curricular Affairs & Student Academic Achievement Carleen Vande Zande.
The strategies charge each campus, college and the UW Extension with preparing students, producing more graduates, increasing well-paying jobs, building stronger communities, growing and diversifying university resources, advancing operational excellence and furthering collaborations between campuses and state partners.
Vande Zande said the accountability report is vital in documenting and spotlighting the strides the university is making in specific aims such as recruiting and retaining students of color and getting students more deeply involved in service learning projects and civic engagement activities.
According to the report, “degrees conferred at UW Oshkosh in 2009-10 totaled 2,180, an increase over 2008-09 and five years earlier. UW Oshkosh conferred 1,861 undergraduate degrees in 2009-10,” exceeding its goal for meeting the “More Graduates” core strategy in that academic year.
First-year retention rates for full-time students of color at UW Oshkosh stood at 72.7 percent in 2009-10, a slight decrease from 2008-09 but an increase of nearly 10 percent since 2005-06, the report states.
UW Oshkosh also remains a UW System and nationwide leader in operational efficiency. The university’s administrative spending “was 28 percent of the national average in FY08, the most recent year of available national data,” the report states. That means UW Oshkosh spent $13 million less on institutional support than the national average in that category, according to the report.
Vande Zande said UW Oshkosh’s transparent, data-driven reporting has earned administrators multiple opportunities to present at state and national conferences spotlighting universities’ best practices.