Miscellaneous Issues at Huxley College
Keith J. Conners, Ph.D.
to: Huxley Leadership
from: President and Board of Trustees
re: Important Issues
We bring some weighty matters to your attention today. It is our hope that we may reflect carefully on these issues over the next few days and discuss them in earnest at one of our final meetings.
- Proposed Doctoral Program -- The Board has voted to entertain a proposal from the Huxley College leadership for a doctor of education (Ed.D.) program in "K-16 Instructional Leadership." We see the need for such a degree in our region, and we understand that at least one of our competing sister institutions may be moving in the same direction. Accordingly, we need to move with dispatch and discretion to develop our plan.
We ask that you study three specific areas of concern related to such a proposal and report back as soon as possible:
a. Market -- Who will be attracted to such a program? How will we recruit the best candidates? What admissions criteria will be use to select candidates?
b. Curriculum -- What kinds of courses and learning experiences will we want to feature? Should we offer a "block" program for a cohort of students who take courses together, or a menu of courses and options for students to pursue? What kinds of scheduling arrangements would be most attractive to students?
c. Research Component -- Admittedly, the Ed.D. entails a less theoretical thesis or dissertation project than a Ph.D. But what parameters should we set for the major culminating project in our degree program? How will research be infused into all courses? What other evaluative criteria should we include along the way (comprehensive exams, pre-lims, admission to candidacy, thesis proposal review, portfolio assessment, etc.)?
- Budget Crisis -- Of a more dire nature is the possibility -- perhaps remote -- that we may lose a significant amount of our funding subsidy from one of our sponsoring states. If we suffer such a loss, we will need to pare our budgets by at least 15% -- and that could mean significant cuts in all areas of the College. We ask that you give some thought to whether to cut 15% across the board in all programs, or whether we might take this opportunity to terminate some expensive and less successful programs altogether so that others might be allowed to maintain their funding and strength.
- Binge Drinking -- Several studies have indicated that this is a wide-spread problem nationally, and none of us can be so naive to think that Huxley is immune from this affliction. SSU, our neighbor, has taken some innovative steps -- including opening an on-campus pub. I'll be curious to hear your thoughts about the issue of substance abuse at Huxley and what we might all do to address the problem proactively.
- Possible Major Donation -- Our advancement office has notified me that a wealthy individual with roots in our area has mentioned the possibility of donating a sizable sum (8 figures!!!) to Huxley if we are willing to make some significant promises in return. Among the items our donor would like to advance are a Center for Feminist Culture, a new academic major in Feminist Studies, and re-naming our main academic building Sappho Hall.
I don't need to tell you how much we could use a donation to our endowment of well over $10 million, but I would like some guidance on how willing we should be to cater to the whims of donors.
- There is a proposal from the Department of Business to increase the requirements for a bachelor's degree in business from 120 to 129 credits by adding 3 more required courses to the major. For many students, this would mean an extra semester of attendance. In addition, the business department would like to hire two new faculty members to teach certain specialized courses. Apparently, the accrediting agency for business schools is concerned about the preparation of our majors and supports this proposal.
- A student group would like to invite Louis Farrakhan to speak on campus next semester. What implications are there for your offices and departments? Should Huxley College allow him to speak?
- Students are using their campus internet connections to explore x-rated websites. Should we regulate this?
To see more Huxley Issues, click on the links below.
Proposals to the Board
Return to Huxley's homepage.
Play through - Hole 12: The Scholarship of Teaching
Return to home.
To write to me, click here.