Provost Cruz’s Monthly Report – September 2014
Update on Selected Internal & External Meetings, Conferences, Communications
Welcome to the September 2014 edition of Provost Cruz’s Monthly Report. The objective of this report is to keep you informed about the Provost’s activities and perspectives on the various strategic and operational issues facing the Division of Academic Affairs and the University at large.
To view past monthly reports, announcements, op-eds, remarks, and emails to the campus community, please visit Provost Cruz’s blog, http://provostblog.fullerton.edu/.
- Attended Senate Executive Committee meetings on September 2 and 23. At the September 2 meeting, informed that the 2013-14 faculty hiring effort yielded a net gain of 27.55 tenure-track faculty members and provided an update on the Library, capital projects, and the future of the Irvine campus. At the September 23 meeting, discussed the use of search firms for executive searches, timelines for on-going and pending dean and AVP administrative searches, outcomes-based funding, and strategies to support faculty teaching online.
- Attended Planning, Resource, and Budget Committee (PRBC) meetings on September 5 and 19. At the September 19 meeting, presented and discussed a whitepaper titled “From enrollments to outcomes: California’s journey to outcomes-based funding.”
- Convened a Council of Deans (COD) meeting on September 10 to discuss assessment, library issues, and facilities improvement projects and a meeting on September 24 to discuss a framework for the development of CSUF’s first-ever Academic Master Plan and continued efforts to scale High-Impact Practices. The chair of the Academic Senate continues to be a special guest at all COD meetings. Approved COD meeting minutes can be viewed on the Academic Affairs webpage.
- Met with Dr. Sean Walker, chair of the Academic Senate, on September 16 and September 22.
- Attended an Academic Senate meeting on September 18. Congratulated the campus community for being recognized, for the second straight year, by the Washington Monthly as the best value among universities in California and No. 4 nationally. Reported enrollment numbers: total FTEs (30,181); total headcount (38,103). Reported latest graduation rate information: 6-year graduation rate = 53.5%, 5-year = 42.2%, 4-year = 17.3%. Reported results of faculty searches: 60 new faculty members were hired with start dates of fall 2014. Reported that fall 2014 starts with 65 recently tenured and promoted faculty members.
Executive Searches and Appointments
- Participated in interviews for the Division of Student Affairs’ search for an Associate Vice President for Retention from September 2-4.
- Participated in interviews for the Division of Information Technology’s search for an Associate Vice President for Information Technology from September 23-26.
- As a member of the system-wide search committee for the position of CSU Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic and Student Affairs, participated in the committee’s kick-off conference call on September 25.
- Announced that Dr. Edward Sullivan, Associate Vice President for Institutional Research and Analytical Studies, was appointed as the new Assistant Vice Chancellor for Academic Research and Resources of the California State University. Dr. Sullivan’s appointment will be effective October 20, 2014. An email announcement was sent to the campus on September 26.
- Announced the members of the committee for the search for a permanent Dean of the College of Communications. The search committee will be chaired by Sheryl Fontaine (Dean, Humanities and Social Sciences) and includes the following members: Jeanine Congalton (Human Communications), Arnold Holland (Arts), Michael Karg (Development – Colleges and Campaigns), Cynthia King (Communications), Heather Osborne-Thompson (Radio-TV-Film), Philippe Perebinossoff (Radio-TV-Film), James Rodriguez (Student Affairs), HyeKyeung Seung (Human Communications), and Jason Shepard (Communications). The national search will be launched later this fall semester. An email was sent to the campus on September 29.
Meetings and Events
- Have held several one-on-one meetings with new faculty members and new department chairs to welcome them to their new positions and to learn more about them, their professional trajectory, and their career expectations. These meetings will continue throughout the semester.
- Provided opening remarks at the 12th International Symposium on Geo-Disaster Reduction, sponsored by the College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, on September 5. The symposium brought together more than 100 engineers and scientists from around the world to share their research and to devise a resolution to help the world in reducing the effects of natural disasters.
- Presented opening remarks at the Conversations about Assessment meeting, sponsored by the Office of Assessment and Educational Effectiveness, on September 5. This was the first of a series of events that seek to establish a foundation for the implementation of our University’s assessment plan.
- Met with student leaders from all 23 CSU campuses during the California State Student Association meeting on September 6. Discussed my background in higher education, in particular my work with The Education Trust, a national research and advocacy organization focused on improving student success and narrowing achievement gaps at the K-12 and higher ed levels.
- Met with the Council of Social Work Education accreditation team on September 18. Discussed the Master of Social Work program’s mission and goals, curriculum, achievements, and challenges and opportunities.
- Held a Conversations with the Provost meeting with newly tenured faculty for the 2014-15 academic year on September 18. Additional meetings are scheduled in the month of October. These informal meetings provide an opportunity for newly tenured faculty to connect with one another and share their insights on how the University is advancing its mission and progressing towards its strategic goals.
- Presented opening remarks at the Symposium on the Impact of Oil Extraction in North Orange County on September 23. The event was an unprecedented collaboration between Cal State Fullerton and six neighboring cities and provided an opportunity for environmental experts to discuss the issue of fracking in a non-partisan, unbiased forum.
- Met with Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) teams for the College of Engineering and Computer Science (ECS) on September 22 and 23 as part of ECS’s reaccreditation process.
- Attended the first meeting of the Outcomes-based Funding Task Force on September 26. Topics included the strategic context, opportunity, and challenge of outcomes-based funding; consideration of the semester’s tasks; and a discussion on developing vision and values. The task force’s charge is to develop a framework for a division-wide conversation on outcomes-based funding (OBF), sketch out a 3-year phased approach for adopting an OBF allocation model for units within Academic Affairs and help oversee implementation of phase 1. The task force includes the following members: Emily Bonney (Professor, Liberal Studies); John Carroll (Director, Academic Technology Office); José Luis Cruz (Provost and Task Force Chair); Sheryl Fontaine (Dean, Humanities and Social Sciences); Stephen Goode (Chair, Mathematics); Bob Koch (Special Assistant to Provost and Facilitator); Emmanuel Lartey (Associate Professor, Economics); Shari McMahan (Deputy Provost); Peter Nwosu (AVP, Academic Programs); and Sean Walker (Chair, Academic Senate).
- Met with the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) team for the College of Health and Human Development (HHD) on September 29 as part of the Department of Counseling’s reaccreditation process.
- Attended a CSU Academic Council meeting at the Chancellor’s Office on September 30. Academic Council meetings bring together provosts and vice presidents for academic affairs from across the CSU to discuss current and upcoming issues pertaining to the academic mission of the CSU system. Topics of discussion included the 2015-16 budget plan, academic performance measures, awards for innovation in higher education and human resources updates.
Op-Eds and Presentations
- Attended the Lumina Next Generation Finance Systems conference in Chicago, IL from September 9-10. The event focused on the Lumina Foundation’s community-based postsecondary education attainment strategy and the role of performance-based funding in our nation’s colleges and universities.
- Presented “Achieving the College Dream: Today’s Imperative” with Dr. Edward Sullivan, Associate Vice President for Institutional Research and Analytical Studies, at the Cal State Fullerton Philanthropic Foundation Board Meeting on September 13. The presentation examined higher education perspectives on a national, state, system and campus level; highlighted the University’s changing student demographics; reviewed enrollment growth, demographic shifts, and degrees earned; and detailed the University’s future goals.
- Commented on the responsibility of universities to support students’ quest to become better selves in an op-ed titled “Higher Ed’s Moral Purpose” (Orange County Register, September 29, 2014).