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Reflections on 2014-2015 & Looking Ahead

As we complete 2014-2015, the year has been both successful and productive for EKU and Academic Affairs.  Here are only a few highlights from the year:  Faculty, chairs, deans, and associate deans have participated in workshops to improve course design, to identify a new QEP topic, and to design a faculty professional-development plan. Together, we have reviewed/edited important policies that guide how we evaluate each other and how we share in decision making. EKU has moved from a SACS-COC Level 5 to Level 6 with the approval of our fourth doctorate, the Psy.D. Degree.  Faculty have participated in the Strategic Initiative Teams to develop action plans for our new Strategic Plan—particularly for the Academic Excellence Goal. 

As I met with each academic department this year, I addressed the increased expectations/scrutiny being placed on higher education, the evidence of academic quality at EKU, and the importance of supporting a sustainable enrollment, focused on student success and strategic academic-program offerings--both online and face-to-face.  Opportunities/challenges continue for EKU to increase our retention and graduation rates, to close the achievement gaps, to better serve the students (particularly adult learners) in our Service Region, and to provide high quality advising and tutoring as needed. 

Through triumphs, challenges, and tragedy, our faculty, staff, and students have shown the strength of the EKU Spirit and that we are EKUnited. 

As we enter a season of recognizing accomplishments of our students, EKU students themselves have shown appreciation for faculty by submitting names of faculty who they say have positively impacted their lives and their learning.  In recent days, hundreds of EKU faculty have been recognized for excellence.

To these faculty, and all faculty who engage students and provide an excellent classroom learning environment, I extend my deepest gratitude.

Focus for 2015-2016

As we embark on our new Strategic Plan - Make No Little Plans, Academic Affairs will launch a number of conversations in 2015-2016.  We will be seeking both your involvement and input for the following:

  • Preparation for SACS-COC and selection of the next Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP)
  • Formation of an Honors College
  • Increased emphasis on STEM-H
  • Supplemental Instruction for underprepared students
  • A deeper focus on high-impact-learning strategies required in our ACCT (Applied Critical and Creative Thinking) for all majors
  • Continued professional development for excellence in teaching and in administration
  • Identification of meaningful changes as we review “assurance-of-learning” outcomes for each program
  • Continued progress in refining our processes and policies

Published on May 06, 2015

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