Provost Update — November 2018

A Message from Kathleen Plinske, Executive Vice President and Provost

I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday! I am delighted to share an update on our progress related to our student outcomes work and invite you to participate in our next steps.

Bottom Line Up Front:

  • We are looking for volunteers to serve on one of six Insight Teams, which will examine one of six hypotheses about the conditions that affect student learning or student outcomes at Valencia. The Insight Teams will work during December and January in preparation for Big Meeting on Friday, February 8, 2019. If you are interested in serving on an Insight Team or would like to learn more, please email me.
  • Three finalists for the position of vice president of Academic Affairs will participate in on-campus interviews this week. We welcome your participation and feedback via open forums that are scheduled from 1 – 2 p.m. on Monday, November 26; Tuesday, November 27; and Thursday, November 29, 2018. The forums will be held at the West Campus in Building 11, Room 330 and will also be livestreamed. If you cannot attend the forums or watch the live videostream, you can view a recording of each forum online. You are invited to provide your feedback about each candidate using this online feedback form.

Conditions that Affect Student Learning and Student Outcomes at Valencia

After the call for online submissions and through your participation in campus forums in October, we received more than 650 of your ideas related to the conditions that have promoted student success at Valencia, as well as the conditions that may have led to disparate outcomes among students from varied backgrounds. Each of the ideas was reviewed and coded to identify common themes; you can review the list of ideas and codes here.

Through the coding process, 15 major hypotheses about the conditions that affect student learning and student outcomes at Valencia emerged. We asked a small team of volunteers to review the literature related to each of the hypotheses, and those teams collaboratively created an annotated bibliography for each hypothesis. You can review the 15 hypotheses, along with each annotated bibliography, here.

On Wednesday, November 7, 2018, Learning Council reviewed the 15 hypotheses and ranked them based on 1) how feasible it would be to develop a strategy to address the hypothesis within the next few years and 2) the impact the strategy would likely have on student learning and student outcomes at Valencia. Through this ranking process, six hypotheses were selected as the first ones to be explored further:

  • Course attendance and withdrawal policies may have unintended consequences; some students who are withdrawn may not experience a sense of belonging and may withdraw from courses on their own when it may not be advisable to do so.
  • Requirements for financial aid verification are cumbersome and lead some students to withdraw, disproportionately affecting low-income students.
  • Many students would benefit from an opportunity to develop the non-cognitive skills and abilities necessary for success in college.
  • Some students may benefit from more diverse pedagogical approaches to create a more inclusive learning environment that fosters a sense of belonging.
  • Some new students who attend New Student Orientation near the start of a term (or after a term starts) enroll in part-of-term courses or in course modalities that do not have a high likelihood of success.
  • Some students are unable to obtain instructional materials prior to the start of the term due to either a lack of financial resources or a lack of physical access.

We are currently looking for volunteers to serve on an “Insight Team” to explore one of these hypotheses more deeply in preparation for Big Meeting on Friday, February 8, 2019. The teams will review college data, resources available in the literature and feedback from our students collected in focus groups and phone interviews. The teams will recommend refinements to the proposed hypothesis and potential next steps related to the addressing the hypothesis. If you are interested in serving on an Insight Team, please email me.

Please also mark your calendars for Big Meeting, which will be held during the morning of Friday, February 8, 2019, at the West Campus in the Special Events Center. At Big Meeting, we will review the recommendations from the Insight Teams and determine our next steps related to the hypotheses about the conditions that affect student learning and student outcomes at Valencia.

Finalists for Vice President of Academic Affairs

I am delighted to share that three finalists for the position of vice president of Academic Affairs will be participating in interviews this week. We welcome your participation and feedback in the following open forums:

Candidate: Isis Artze-Vega
Date: Monday, November 26, 2018
Time: 1 – 2 p.m.
Location: West Campus, Building 11, Room 330

Candidate: Shannon Ydoyaga
Date: Tuesday, November 27, 2018
Time: 1 – 2 p.m.
Location:
West Campus, Building 11, Room 330

Candidate: Wendi Dew
Date: Thursday, November 29, 2018
Time: 1 – 2 p.m.
Location: West Campus, Building 11, Room 330

To view the livestream of these forums, go to http://valenciacollege.edu/live/ on the scheduled date and time for each of the candidates; you can submit questions for the candidates by emailing HR4U@valenciacollege.edu. If you cannot attend the forums or watch the live videostream, you can view an archived recording of each forum online. You are invited to provide your feedback about each candidate via this online feedback form.

As always, if you have any questions or would simply like to share your thoughts or ideas, please don’t hesitate to reach out directly to me at kplinske@valenciacollege.edu.

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