Task force works to finalize realignment

With the new colleges now determined, the academic realignment task force is finalizing the reorganization of individual academic departments.

After nearly a year of meeting and discussing its options, the task force has finally settled on the names of the five new colleges:

  • College of Art and Media
  • College of Education and Human Services
  • College of Science, Health and Environment
  • College of Public and Global Affairs
  • College of Business and Innovation

Now, the task force is hammering out the last details before President Edna Szymanski approves the final plan.

“The president will announce where each of the departments are going at the end of February, and then the transition will begin,” said Provost Anne Blackhurst.

The transition, which won’t be complete until the 2013-2014 academic year, will involve changing the website to fit the new colleges, along with updating and reprinting all program materials and publications.

“There will actually be a minimum disruption for students because we’re not changing our academic majors,” Blackhurst said. “It’ll be a seamless transition from your perspective.”

Realignment focuses on the students 

The goal of the realignment is to better prepare students for life after college.

“If we don’t figure out a way to prepare you so you can have that flexibility of thought across disciplines and projects, then we haven’t served you,” Szymanski said. “It’ll take us awhile to evolve and get it right, but it really is about trying to prepare you better.”

Blackhurst said some faculty members have expressed concerns about the realignment, but she believes the majority of the students don’t care which college they graduate from.

“There are some faculty (members) who are excited and ready to go, and then there are others that are honestly perplexed, deeply concerned, irritable,” she said. “With due respect for that, we feel the university isn’t necessarily to make faculty feel comfortable, it’s to serve students and do things in a way that makes our students prepared for life after college.”

Brooke Koslowski, an elementary inclusive education junior, who attended the Town Hall Meeting last Thursday to learn more about the realignment, said she’s ready for the change.

“Coming in here freshman year and being here now as a junior, I’ve seen the university change for the better 100 percent,” Koslowski said. “It’s cool to see it transform, and it’s cool to be a part of that transformation.”

Szymanski’s office will be open from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. today for students to express their concerns about the realignment and any other campus related issues.

BY JASMINE MAKI
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