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Provost’s Update

January 2014 Provost's Update

Colleagues,

A warm welcome to spring semester at RIT is in order, as we’ve been experiencing nearly record-level wind chills and frosty conditions on campus during our first intersession. I want to take a moment to acknowledge our intrepid students, faculty and staff, who have braved snow, sleet and ice to keep things running smoothly during the past month. I hope that despite the Polar Vortex, your January has been filled with productive opportunities to conduct research and scholarly activities, participate in creative endeavors, or engage in one of the many professional development opportunities on campus.

In this monthly message, I will share some upcoming changes to my campus communications as well as some upcoming awards and events. I hope that spring semester is invigorating, and fruitful, (and hopefully, warm!) for you and our students, and look forward to an exciting time of year on campus as we embark on our first spring semester.

 

Jeremy Haefner

New Blog: Provost's Reflections

Communicating to the campus community the various work and activities occurring in the division of academic affairs has been a personal priority for me as your provost. Over the years, we have had a mixture of official messages, the provost's monthly updates, the eZine, and of course the Academic Affairs website.

Communicating to the campus community the various work and activities occurring in the division of academic affairs has been a personal priority for me as your provost. Over the years, we have had a mixture of official messages, the provost's monthly updates, the eZine, and of course the Academic Affairs website.

I am pleased to announce that I am adding a blog-type communication to my website called Provost's Reflections. It is my intention to use this venue for regular but informal discussions on news across campus, issues that might interest faculty and staff, and other messaging relevant for the campus. You can find this at http://www.rit.edu/provost/blog.

I hope you find the new addition as well as the other communication means helpful and even interesting. I am always open to your suggestions and ideas so please do not hesitate to contact me; my email is jeremy.haefner@rit.edu.

Intersession Update

Over 200 students took classes during our first-ever intersession, (over 270 if you include our global campuses), exceeding our initial projections. Fifteen intersession courses were offered, an ambitious first offering, given our inexperience in this area.

Over 200 students took classes during our first-ever intersession, (over 270 if you include our global campuses), exceeding our initial projections. Fifteen intersession courses were offered, an ambitious first offering, given our inexperience in this area.  It was a great opportunity for both students and faculty to try new formats and methods for teaching everything from film studies to clean energy to a very ‘immersive’ criminal justice course. I am grateful to faculty who took the challenge to develop a new course over the summer, and full list of our intrepid intersession pioneers is available on the Provost’s Reflections blog.

If you’ve been inspired by our intersession success, be aware that deadlines are quickly approaching for faculty intending to teach during next year’s intersession. Proposed courses will need to be approved by the end of spring semester this year. 

Next steps include an intersession information session, led by Dr. J. Fernando Naveda, and which will feature some of this year's Intersession TigerTerm course pioneers.  Faculty who intend to develop a January 2015 TigerTerm course are encouraged to attend this event. Additionally, we will be developing a marketing strategy for TigerTerm courses that emphasizes the unique nature of these alternative learning opportunities.

Congratulation to PLIG Awardees

Please join me in congratulating faculty for receiving Provost’s Learning Innovation Grants for 2013-2014.  The proposals are also available on the PLIG website

Please join me in congratulating faculty for receiving Provost’s Learning Innovation Grants for 2013-2014.  The proposals are also available on the PLIG website. As you can see, there are three categories of PLIG funding:

  • Focus Grants:  Provide funds for faculty to develop or apply an innovative mode or model of teaching and learning that directly supports an RIT priority.
  • Exploration Grants: Provide seed funds for faculty to investigate an innovative mode or model of teaching and learning in terms of its potential to positively impact student outcomes and the student experience at RIT.  
  • Implementation Grants: Provide funds for faculty to implement an innovative mode or model of teaching and learning, which has been shown to positively impact student outcomes and the student experience at RIT.

Focus Grants

  • Sandi Connelly (College of Science, Gosnell School of Life Sciences)  “Implementing the Flipped Class Model to Engage All Students in a Large General Education Biology Course”
  • Bruce Hartpence (GCCIS, IST) “Flipping Virtualization”

Exploration Grants

  • Robin Cass & Jane Shellenbarger (CIAS, School for American Crafts)”The Digital Hand: Integrating CAD & Rapid Prototyping into Material Arts Education”
  • Michael Palanski (SCB, Management) “Anonymous Peer-Reviewed Writing”
  • Peter Schmidt (International Business, Croatia) “Promoting Flipped Classrooms at RIT's European Campuses”
  • Bharat Bhole and Bríd G. Hanna (COLA, Economics) “Developing Computer-based Experiments to Teach Economics Principles”
  • Raja S. Kushalnagar (NTID, Information and Computing Studies) “Closed Visual Cues for Introductory Programming Tutorial Videos”
  • Mario Gomes (Engineering, Mechanical Engineering)  “Effect of competition on students in freshman design/build classes”

Implementation Grants

  • Rob Garrick (CAST, MMET)  “TRiLE – Technology Rich Interactive Learning Environment”
  • Richard Mislan (GCCIS, Computing Security) “MobiSploit”
Call for Nominations: The Isaac L. Jordan Faculty Pluralism Award

Nominations for the Isaac L. Jordan Sr. Faculty Pluralism Award are being accepted through February 25. This university-wide award program recognizes faculty members for their significant contributions to enhance diversity at RIT.

Nominations for the Isaac L. Jordan Sr. Faculty Pluralism Award are being accepted through February 25. This university-wide award program recognizes faculty members for their significant contributions to enhance diversity at RIT. Named after the first chairperson of the Commission for Promoting Pluralism, Jordan provided outstanding leadership in advancing pluralism at RIT. This award in his name ensures the continuance of his legacy and honors those who carry out his work to promote diversity and pluralism at RIT and within the larger community.

Only faculty are eligible to receive this award but anyone (students, staff, faculty, community members) can submit a nomination. Self-nominations also accepted. Nominations must be submitted online by 4:30pm on Tuesday, February 25, 2014.

Tavis Smiley Keynote Launches Expressions of King’s Legacy Celebration

Tavis Smiley, host of the Tavis Smiley show, author and community advocate, was the keynote speaker for the 2014 Expressions of King’s Legacy Celebration on January 30 at the Gordon Field House. 

Tavis Smiley, host of the Tavis Smiley show, author and community advocate, was the keynote speaker for the 2014 Expressions of King’s Legacy Celebration on January 30 at the Gordon Field House. Smiley spoke of carrying on the public conversation started by Dr. Martin Luther King, and many faculty, staff and students turned out to hear from a speaker renowned for his commitment to race and gender equity.

Also featured in the Expressions program was Curtis Babers, a fourth-grader from Houston, Texas, who won the 2013 Gardere Martin Luther King Jr. Oratory Competition. RIT poets Alexis Harris, Lakeishia Brown, Michelle Sason, and local singer Whitney Morrison also performed at Thursday’s event. The keynote kicked off a full weekend of events, including a panel discussion on the 1964 riots that took place in Rochester, a performance of Gospelfest: The Musical, and an Evening of Music and Poetry featuring recording artist Dwele and Strivers Row poet, Alysia Harris.

I applaud the efforts of the Division of Diversity and Inclusion, for organizing such high-quality events and appreciate the contributions of the event sponsors, WXXI and WDKX. A full list of sponsors, venues and events is available on the Expressions website. I hope you are able to take advantage of this superb array of talented speakers and performers in what is sure to be a highlight of the academic year.

Hats off to NTID

There have been two great announcements for NTID recently and I thought it was appropriate to share with you at this start of our second semester.

There have been two great announcements for NTID recently and I thought it was appropriate to share with you at this start of our second semester. First, thanks to the tireless effort by President Gerry Buckley and the strong support by our New York senators and representatives, the fiscal year 2014 funding for NTID has been restored AND increased in the recently completed Federal budget agreement. This is indeed welcome news for NTID because their funding over the past several years had been cut and they have had to deal with substantial reductions in their spending.

Second, if the person signing the national anthem at this year’s Super Bowl looks familiar, it could be because it is our own 2004 RIT/NTID graduate Amber Zion. No matter who wins the Super Bowl (but I did spend a lot of years in Colorado), RIT will be a winner with Amber representing us so well.