Academic Senate Meeting Highlights: Oct. 6


61-61765The Academic Senate discussed employment searches, student success policies and course designators yesterday.

Here are some of the highlights of the discussed topics.

The university is continuing its search for the senior associate dean for Academic Affairs for the College of Medicine.

“In the College of Medicine, there are three senior associate deans and one associate dean,” Gealt said. “I believe we’ve filled three of the positions so this last one will be filled, and they are all national searches.”

Gealt also said the search committee for the new Dean of the College of Health Professions met last Friday. Parker Search is the consulting firm being used to aid in the search.

Final interviews for the deputy chief information officer positions ended Friday. An offer has been extended to one of the candidates.

The Education Advisory Board discussed various topics at their meeting two weeks ago including student success and the importance of having faculty involvement in helping students succeed.

“What’s really missing from a lot of our initiatives is the impact of faculty on student success,” CMU Provost Michael Gealt said. “If you look at the amount of students spend with advisers, it’s an hour, a couple of hours a semester. Students are with faculty over 200 hours a semester. We have a lot more opportunity to work with the students and to help them really figure out what it means to be a student at a university and to help them figure out where they want to go with their academic careers.”

The board also discussed academic policies that may inhibit a student’s performance, as well as the consistently higher rates of dropping and withdrawal associated with certain courses, and numerous advising models, as well as bringing in more advisers to some of the colleges

Gealt lamented the cut in funding in higher education across the board over the past several years.

“Over the last decade, we’ve seen a shift the perception of higher education as a public good to a private good,” he said. “We are seeing people, governments not wanting to support higher education because they are not looking at what we give back to our graduates and give back to the community.”

Gealt also discussed the Liberal Education and America’s Promise initiative, which was put together primarily by the Association of American Colleges and Universities.

“We as a state need to make an application to become a LEAP state and then the individual universities within the state need to apply to become LEAP universities within the state,” Gealt said.

The bill at the state level to put the initiative together was approved and signed by the governor in the spring.

The goals of the initiative are:

      • The advancement of human knowledge and cultures and the physical and natural world
      • Intellectual and practical skills, such as critical thinking and quantitative literacy
      • Personal and social responsibility in integrative learning

The Higher Learning Commission team, comprised of seven constituents, will be on campus April 25-26, 2016. Anyone is welcome to attend their meetings, which will focus on methods on how to reach the students.
In order for the HLC to remain in good standing, it must:

    • Annually submit the data report, which includes the committee’s financial and non-financial information
    • Produce a requirement of quality initiative
    • Complete a Federal compliance document, which assures the committee is in compliance with all federal regulations that affect the university and ultimately affect student financial aid
    • Provide an assurance document

The Academic Senate approved alterations to two course designators. ENS was added to indicate environmental science. TEC, which previously designated technology classes, was eliminated.

Central Michigan University President George Ross was not in attendance because he was out of town, but his report was submitted electronically prior to the meeting.


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