Provost Newsletter - September 2022
Welcome back to campus as we settle in after a busy first month of the academic year. I hope these first few weeks in Baylor’s classrooms and labs have been fruitful.
This past week, I hosted our virtual Fall Faculty Meeting, in which faculty gathered to share the joy of faculty awards, learn more about our American Council on Education (ACE) Internationalization Lab report, and hear from our President and me about our goals for the upcoming year. As always, we were delighted to congratulate the 20+ Faculty Award recipients on campus, as well as the Collins Outstanding Professor presented to Mojgan Parizi-Robinson, the Centennial Professor Award presented to Jay Yoo and Byron Newberry, and the Cornelia Marschall Smith Professor of the Year Award presented to Kenneth Van Treuren.
As many of you know, in 2020 Baylor joined the 18th cohort of the ACE Internationalization Laboratory, a guided and collaborative strategic planning process that takes place over two years (August 2020-July 2022). This campus internationalization effort aims to prepare the Baylor community to engage meaningfully in an increasingly interconnected world. During the Fall Faculty Meeting, Vice Provost Jeff Hamilton, co-chair of the steering committee, shared some of the goals circulated in the final report that was produced in the summer of 2022.
Also shared at the Fall Faculty Meeting was a sampling of President Livingstone’s goals for the year, news about the future of the Bear program (spoiler alert: we may be getting new cubs in the future!), and the status of our capital projects. President Livingstone is positioning Baylor well as a leader in higher education. I am so grateful for her leadership.
In my report to the faculty, I celebrated the arrival of the most talented and diverse new faculty cohort Baylor has had, as well as new endowed chairs. I am incredibly grateful to our search committees and faculty for their work in recruiting faculty committed to Baylor’s mission. The forthcoming academic year hiring plan includes 165 faculty, eight endowed chairs, and the Vice Provost for Global Engagement. Keep up the great work! Hiring well is essential to the complete implementation of Illuminate.
We concluded our Fall Faculty Meeting by reviewing our new Strategic Enrollment Management (SEM) Plan. This initiative clarifies our undergraduate enrollment goals and is key to enabling us to more intentionally plan for our new students and to develop strategies that will enable our students’ success. Thank you to those who shared your time with us at the Fall Faculty Meeting.
With gratitude for the work you are doing,
Readers Meet the Author
Kickoff Event with Jonathan Tran
September 23, 12:00-1:00 pm, Cox Auditorium, Armstrong Browning Library
Come and join us for this special in-person kickoff event for the Readers Meet the Author series as we listen and learn from Jonathan Tran’s book, “Asian Americans and the Spirit of Racial Capitalism.” Lunch will be provided. To register, click the event title above.
Please ensure that you review the updated University COVID protocols for the Fall 2022 semester, as communicated in the BU Digest of August 23rd. We would ask you to continue treating your students with grace when they report that they must isolate due to COVID. Above all, we hope you will take the necessary precautions to protect yourself and your family.
Cherry Award Nominations
The Cherry Award Committee is soliciting nominations for the 2024 Robert Foster Cherry Award for Great Teaching. Three finalists will receive $15,000 for themselves and $10,000 for their home department. The award recipient, who will join us at Baylor for a semester-long teaching residency, will receive an additional $250,000 with $25,000 going to his or her home department. The committee seeks your help in identifying exceptional classroom teachers and encourages you to make a nomination. Learn more about this award by visiting the Baylor Cherry Awards website, or by contacting the Cherry Award Office.
New from the Baylor Group Health Committee
Baylor is pleased to inform you of an important and exciting update to the administrator for our Baylor Health Plan. The network and administration of our medical insurance plans will transition to UMR/UnitedHealthcare (UMR/UHC) from BlueCross BlueShield of Texas, effective January 1, 2023.
The Baylor Health Plan is staying the same with no changes to deductibles, out-of-pocket maximums, and copays. Other benefits, such as pharmacy, vision and dental coverage, will also stay the same. An email with detailed information was sent to all faculty and staff on June 15, 2022. For more info, please visit the UMR website, view the FAQs, and watch this video.
Welcome to the New Assistant Vice President of Provost Initiatives
The Office of the Provost is delighted to welcome Jeff Strietzel, Ph.D. to his new position as Assistant Vice President of Provost Initiatives. Jeff begins his role September 12th.
Vice Provosts' Corner
Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs
- University Distinguished Professor Policy
The University has recently adopted a new policy on University Distinguished Professors at Baylor. This policy, BU-PP 722, establishes a process for recognizing faculty who have achieved exceptional national and international recognition in their respective disciplines. The policy describes criteria for this honor and procedures for nomination and selection.
Vice Provost for Global Engagement
- Learn more about Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL)
COIL can enhance any class by bringing in perspectives from students at another geo-location. Help foster skills in cross-cultural dialogue and engagement by providing this unique global dimension to your existing courses. Global Baylor and the Center for Global Engagement will be offering short virtual information sessions and helping to answer questions.
COIL Information Sessions (click to join via Zoom):
Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education and Institutional Effectiveness
- McNair Scholars Program Awarded Federal Grant for Five More Years
Baylor’s McNair Scholars program is delighted to announce that it was recently awarded a 5-year renewal from the U.S. Department of Education to continue providing programming to Baylor’s diverse student population. During the program’s first five years, McNair Scholars from Baylor have been accepted into doctoral programs at universities across the country and have been awarded fellowships from the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship program, the Fulbright Scholar Program, and the Goldwater Foundation.
- Applications Now Open for the 22-23 Cohort of McNair Scholars
The application for this year’s cohort of McNair Scholars is now open, and we would like your assistance in reaching out to students who could benefit from this life-changing opportunity. Please help us to spread the word! To learn more about the McNair Scholars, visit their program website.
- Progress Report Campaign to Take Place September 26—October 10
Progress Reports are an essential tool in providing feedback to students who are in danger of not performing well in one of your courses. Please help us by submitting progress reports on your students. Instructions are available online, and a Progress Report Workshop hosted by Ron English will be available on September 20 from 3:00 to 3:45 pm on Zoom (link available here).
- Majors Fair Hosted by the Major Exploration and Success Advising Office (MESA)
October 24, 3:00-5:00 p.m., Foster 250
We would love to see representatives from all academic departments explore this great opportunity to share information about majors and minors with students who are exploring their path(s) to success. Refreshments for faculty, staff, and students will include Dr Pepper floats! Questions? Please contact Bob Shipp at Robert_Shipp@baylor.edu.
- News from the Academy of Teaching and Learning
- 2023 Summer Faculty Institute (SFI) applications are due Monday, October 3. SFI 2023 will run from May 30 to June 30, 2023. Learn more about SFI and download the application form at www.bayor.edu/atl/sfi.
- Digital humanities, affordable course materials, social issues in STEM courses, evaluating changes you make to your teaching or course: these are some of the topics that will be addressed in the fall docket of eight Seminars for Excellence in Teaching (SET). Check out the schedule, read session abstracts, and register at www.baylor.edu/atl/set. Don’t miss this opportunity to explore creative teaching strategies with other faculty!
- In collaboration with the Center for Global Engagement, the Academy for Teaching and Learning invites you to two seminars this fall on working with international students.
Important Academic Deadlines
Additional deadlines are available on the Academic Units Deadlines calendar.
- September 14- Faculty of Color Welcome.
- September 16-17- Family Weekend.
- September 19- Constitution Day Lecture.
- September 23- Readers Meet the Author: Jonathan Tran.
- September 26- The provost’s office will send a notification of each Regular Lecturer/Clinical Instructor/Clinical Assistant Professor’s current year of consecutive, full-time service to the faculty member and his or her department chair and Dean.
- September 30- Chairs (or Dean in schools in which the Dean acts as department chair) will inform Regular Lecturers/Clinical Instructor/Clinical Assistant Professors that applications for the next rank must be made and inform them of any materials that must be submitted in addition to the notebook.
- October 3- Tenure notebooks for 2nd-year tenure-track faculty due to chair. Chair distributes Colleague Evaluation Forms to tenured faculty and schedules the meetings.
- October 1-31- Reviews for 2nd-year tenure-track faculty (must be done by October 31).
- October 1-7- Summer sabbatical applications due to the dean (first week of October).
- October 4- All-Chair Training.
- October 20- Readers Meet the Author: Holly Oxhandler.
Spotlight on the Academy
- Laura Blanche Jackson Lectureship in World Issues
The Honors College is hosting the Laura Blanche Jackson Lectureship in World Issues on October 3 at 7:00 p.m. in Cashion 506. Professor Hal Brands, the Henry A. Kissinger Distinguished Professor of Global Affairs at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, will be speaking on the topic: “The Twilight Struggle: What History Can Teach Us About America’s Rivalries with China and Russia Today.”
- Honors College featured on the Discovery Channel
Research led by Honors College professors Davide Zori, Ph.D., and Colleen Zori, Ph.D., was explored on Discovery’s primetime adventure series “Expedition Unknown,” which premiered August 31. In the episode titled “Finding Italy’s Lost Empire,” the Zoris shared their findings from the San Giuliano Archaeological Research Project. The full announcement regarding the episode is available on Baylor’s Media and Public Relations website.
Robbins College of Health and Human Sciences
- Robbins College Online OTD Program Receives Accreditation
Congratulations to the entry-level Online Occupational Therapy Doctoral Program for receiving full accreditation through the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA). Fantastic work has been done to grow and support this program successfully and we are grateful for the team’s hard work
School of Education
- Ph.D. in School Psychology Earns Accreditation
Baylor School of Education’s recently established Ph.D. program in School Psychology has earned accreditation on contingency from the American Psychological Association (APA). Administered within the Department of Educational Psychology, the program’s inaugural cohort is projected to graduate in 2023, rendering the program eligible for full accreditation in 2025.
- Congratulations to Nicholas Benson!
Nicholas Benson, Ph.D., associate professor and director of the Ph.D. program in School Psychology, was inducted into the National Society for the Study of School Psychology during the American Psychological Association’s annual convention on Aug. 4, 2022. Membership is restricted to 150 renowned scholars and represents a significant academic achievement.
- Baylor’s Online Ed.D. Program Ranked on Fortune Online Program Listing
Fortune magazine has ranked Baylor’s online Ed.D. in Learning and Organizational Change, offered in the Department of Curriculum & Instruction, as No. 4 in its Best Online Ed.D. Programs for 2022. This program honor comes on the heels of recognition as a Carnegie Project on the Education Doctorate (CPED) Program of the Year 2022 winner.
School of Engineering and Computer Science
- Computer Science Online Program Recognized in Fortune National Rankings
Baylor’s online Computer Science program was recently recognized by Fortune magazine as the 12th ranked Best Online Master’s in Computer Science Degrees in 2022. This recognition puts Baylor in the company of other stellar programs across the nation. Congratulations to the faculty and staff for your continued efforts to deliver a quality program that ensures students are able to successfully meet their career goals and capitalize on the demands of a growing computer science market.
School of Music
- Graduate Student in Music Wins Grand Prize
Congratulations to Max Winningham, composition, double bass, for winning the grand prize in the International Society of Bassists/David Walter 2022 Composition Competition. Max performed his original composition, “Tabula Rasa,” which he also performed in Carnegie Hall as one of three winners of the Semper Pro Musica Solo Competition in May.
- Upcoming Concerts
- Thursday, September 15: The Wind Ensemble, under the direction of Dr. J. Eric Wilson, and Symphonic Band, under the direction of Dr. Isaiah Odajima, present a spectacular concert. Jones Concert Hall, 7:30 p.m.
- Friday, September 16: Family Weekend Choral Concert featuring A Cappella Choir, Bella Voce, Concert Choir, Men’s Choir, Women’s Choir, VirtuOSO, and Chamber Singers. Jones Concert Hall, 5 p.m.
- Saturday, September 24: Bella Voce Alumni Concert celebrating more than ten years of choral music. Jones Concert Hall, 7:30 p.m.
- New Resources Available from University Libraries
Welcome back for the fall term! While the campus was quiet (and hot!) this summer, the Libraries were active, making improvements and securing additional resources. Learn more here: www.baylor.edu/library/fall2022update
- Virtual Reality Interest Sessions: Explore, Imagine, Design
Baylor University’s new Extended Reality Lab offers two interest sessions this month that will explore VR’s endless possibilities in the classroom. Through hands-on experiences, learn how you can leverage VR to teach difficult concepts and prepare your students for the emerging metaverse. All faculty are welcome to join. Click the title above to learn more and register!
Previous issues of the Provost's Newsletter can be accessed on the Office of the Provost website.