Graduate School Administrative Board
August 28, 2006
Present: Patricia Anderson, Sharon Morris Bland, Sylvia Brown, Stan Eakins, Margie Gallagher, Linner Griffin, James Holte, Gerhard Kalmus, George Kasperek, Sharon Knight, John Kramar, Paul Kaufmann, Saeed Moaveni, Vivian Mott, Ron Newton, Belinda Patterson, Patrick Pellicane, Heather Ries, Art Rouse, Carmine Scavo, and Mark Taggart.
The meeting was called to order by Dean Pellicane. Dr. Pellicane welcomed all attendees to the first meeting, and all present were asked to introduce themselves and mention their affiliation.
Dr. Pellicane indicated that there were many challenges and opportunities in front of us, and he wanted this board to address the very important and substantive issues. An information session was then initiated. First, Ron Newton gave an update on the new Graduate Student Council (GSC), the graduate student government organization. The GSC has been formerly known as the Graduate Student Advisory Council, an organization that has been dormant for the last few years. Graduate student government is being reinvigorated with the formation of the GSC, and the selection of a slate of officers. Robert Wayne Miller is the new president. Dr. Pellicane reported that the annual graduate student research symposium will most likely be in March, and there are plans to make this a week-long program. The Graduate Student Task Force, established by the Division of Research and Graduate Studies, will be providing their report soon. The Yardley Group will be visiting the campus once again; their report on doctoral programs will also follow soon. The Graduate Fair is scheduled for October 26 in Mendenhall. Two-hundred invitations have been sent to other institutions soliciting their participation, and it is expected that 30 or 40 will be represented. The event will coincide with Career Day. This year, graduate student recruitment with travel to other institutions and fairs will be done in a minimal way. One of the reasons for curtailment is that there is need for enhancement of the display apparatus as well as the materials disseminated. In spite of these, Belinda Patterson will still be visiting NC campuses in September and October.
Dr. Pellicane shared his perceptions after his brief stint on campus: (1) GSAB could help define a strategic direction for graduate programs – what are the goals? What about distance education? What about assessment? (2) ECU is in transition – 21st century provides new challenges; distance education has fully impacted our programs and our university; (3) The funding model for graduate student support is based on legacy, and there is need to re-evaluate the process; (4) The university is rapidly moving into the research arena, and there is need to take in the fact that we have doctoral programs as well as masters programs.
Some needs that Dr. Pellicane has perceived are: (1) Having a well-defined grievance procedure for graduate students; (2) Conversion from hard-copy to an electronic catalogue; (3) Course levels for degree credit should be discussed – lower level courses may be appropriate for some degrees; (4) residency requirements are at the forefront of visibility – financial independence must be demonstrated – financial statements from parents might be appropriate; (5) Curriculum issues will be under the purview of the faculty; curriculum committee proceedings will be presided over by faculty, not the dean; (6) GSAB may not need to address decisions on individual student petitions; instead, they should deal with “broader” more generic issues.
School of Dentistry will be presenting documents for this body to consider – particularly curriculum issues. There will be urgency – 67 courses will be submitted for consideration. Dentistry is a graduate program with an undergraduate degree required. Approval will be needed before October 1st. Materials will be presented to the GSAB at the next meeting on September 18th.
Dr. Pellicane presented some ideas on programs he would like to see: (1) A graduate student professional development institute; areas such as public speaking, ethics, etc. would be covered; have a certification process; it was suggested that the University of Texas Web site should be looked at for insight on a “development program;” (2) A visiting scholars program – a seminar and outreach activity would be part of the program; (3) A development program for the graduate school would be started; and (4) An electronic process to manage interaction with our customers, i.e. our graduate students – recruitment - application – matriculation – graduation; it is important to provide excellent “customer service;” the College of Business is already moving in this direction – will be a part of this activity along with the Graduate School. It will provide efficiency and efficacy. This effort may be supported by an increase in the application fee – cost will be between $50K - $70K for the Graduate School, with additional costs undoubtedly with involvement of more participants.
It was pointed out that certification (with certificates) should be handled by the University and/or the Graduate School; as of now, students are not receiving these in regular and formal fashion; departments in some cases are doing their own; however, this process should be the responsibility of the institution and should be addressed by the Graduate School
The information session was ended with roundtable discussions, and the meeting was adjourned.
The next meeting will be on September 18th at 3:30 pm in Mendenhall.
R J Newton
Recorder and Associate Dean