Wednesday Message from Provost Ed Bonahue

Crunch time again, isn’t it? In these last couple weeks of the semester, I know how busy you are. But here are a few important items that I really hope you’ll note.

QEP Open Forum
Dr. Jodi Long and Dr. Rhonda Morris have had a busy semester. Over the past four months, they have worked with a college-wide steering committee and several QEP workgroups to refine and focus the college’s myriad ideas about advisement, intervention, and communication into a focused plan, grounded in both an assessment of our own students’ needs and in a review of best practices across the country. You are invited to attend an open forum and Q&A session on the QEP this Friday, April 20th, at 2:00 in the E Auditorium. Over the next five years, the QEP will likely impact all of us. So this is a great opportunity to hear about this important work.

An online survey for online education!
As many of you know, an ad hoc committee of the College Senate has been meeting for most of this year to discuss best practices and challenges within online education, and to consider the college’s overall long-term strategy. The committee would like to hear more from faculty about online education, including thoughts on how the College can improve its delivery and assessment of online courses. The committee has devised a brief survey (available at http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/YKMWGYV ) to explore faculty opinion, and it would be great to have feedback from both those who have never taught online, those who do so regularly, and those still trying to figure out what they think. Please take a moment to complete this 10-15 minute survey, which will remain open until April 27, the last day of classes.

Chair and Director evaluations
As of this writing, all chairs and directors of the academic departments have received evaluation surveys for distribution to the faculty and staff in their departments. I know all the chairs and directors join me in asking for your constructive and forthright feedback and suggestions. Responses you make to these surveys are completely confidential, and they form an important part of the annual evaluation process for each academic administrator. So please take advantage of this opportunity to provide feedback.

OSHA
The Perry Center for Emerging Technologies, the Banner Center for Building Construction, and the CIED are teaming up in May to offer a standard OSHA training opportunity to the Gainesville area. The OSHA 30-hour General Industry Outreach Training course is a comprehensive safety program designed for anyone involved in general industry. The program provides complete information on OSHA compliance, covering 24 training modules required by the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) that apply toward 30-hour General Industry course completion card. The cost to the general public will be $189, but the college is making it offering it free to staff from appropriate departments that want to participate. The dates for this training are Monday, May 14, through Friday, May 18th. For more information, please call 395-5896.

A calculus of success
Congratulations to the Math Department, and especially to all faculty who teach calculus. The calculus program at Santa Fe was recently identified by the Mathematical Association of America (MAA) as a college with a remarkable level of success in its calculus program. This finding was part of a National Science Foundation survey of calculus programs across the country that sought to identify best practices in instruction, student retention and progression, and even student confidence and enjoyment of the subject. Owing to our excellent results, representatives from the study will visit Santa Fe in the fall semester to conduct a case-study on our math department’s calculus program. So congratulations once again to Katey Arnold and the math department, and especially to all the faculty who rotate through our calculus program.

Thanks for your time and attention. More next week.

Cheers,
-Ed