Thoughts from the Provost
The works of the Lord are great, studied by all who have pleasure in them. His work is honorable and glorious, and his righteousness endures forever. He has made His wonderful works to be remembered; The Lord is gracious and full of compassion. Psalm 111:2-4 (NKJV)
We enter the 2017 year with many testimonies of the great work of the Lord in 2016. Each experience has brought new learning opportunity to the work and power of the Lord’s plan in our lives, the lives of our students and all the Vanguard community. I look forward to our Spring 2017 semester and the way our work together will influence the success of a new generation of learners. Gilbert K. Chesterton states that education is simply the soul of a society as it passes from one generation to another. As Christian professors we have the opportunity to advance the Christian perspective of each discipline and with conviction engage our students in the eternal kingdom value of their learning success and contribution to society.
We have a great opportunity this year as we look ahead to our accreditation visit February 28th through March 2nd. On January 19th we will have a Mock visit in preparation for our WSCUC Team. The members of our Mock will include Dr. James Appleton, President Emeritus of University of Redlands and past Chair of WSCUC Commission; Dr. Mignon Jacobs, Associate Provost for Accreditation and Educational Effectiveness & Accreditation Liaison Officer, Fuller Theological Seminary; and George Latter, CFO, Point Loma Nazarene University.
We transitioned in leadership in the Graduate Education department. Dr. Deanna Brady resigned as Director of the Graduate Education department. She worked diligently to transition our credential program to the new CTC credential program. She transitioned out for personal reasons and we appreciate her service to the Graduate Education Department. Dr. Mikki Gil and Dr. Sylvia Kane will serve as Interim Co-Directors for the remainder of the academic year.
Additionally, Dr. Vivian Mun will resign as faculty and coordinator of Multiple subject credential at the end of the Spring 2017 term (May, 2017). Dr. Mun has been a tremendous asset to the Graduate Education Department. As the Multiple Subject cohort leader, Dr. Mun has done an excellent job of preparing our teacher candidates, as is evidenced by her students’ TPA scores and students’ comments. They adamantly proclaim how much they’ve learned through her exemplary instruction. Dr. Mun played an integral role in creating the Transition plan to assist with our credential program’s alignment with the CTC’s new regulations, and has brought much expertise in the area of educational technology. We appreciate the work of Dr. Mun and know that she will be greatly missed . Both positions will be opened with plans to hire for Fall, 2017.
News from Dean of the College
Happy New Year!
Chair Nominations. From the Faculty Handbook: “Departmental Chairs serve a two-year term…. Departmental Chairs may serve consecutive terms on the recommendation of their Departments and the dean of the College with the approval of the Provost” (240:133).
The following departments need to nominate a chair for the 2017-2019 term, beginning in the fall:
I recommend that the nomination process take place early in the spring semester so that new chairs have time to shadow current chairs. Please let me know if you would like me to facilitate the nomination process in your department.
Course Syllabi. Please have your spring course syllabi uploaded to the shared drive into the “Course Syllabi” folder. Per the Faculty Handbook 632:020, this is to be done before the end of the first week of the semester
News from the Registrar
- January 16 – last day for students to add/drop courses on myVU.
- January 17-20 – add/drops must be done in the Registrar’s Office with adds requiring the signature of the professor. Freshmen also need their academic advisor’s signature to add or drop.
- January 20 – last day to drop without the course appearing on the student’s transcript.
News from Academic Resource Center
What an amazing semester we had in the Tutorial Center. We ended the Fall 2016 semester with over 325 requests for tutors being filled! In the entire 2015-16 school year, we had just over 400 requests filled. If this trend continues into the Spring 2017 semester, we could easily fill over 60% more requests this year than we did last year. God was so faithful in providing the tutors we needed; we could not have done it without Him and the help we received from our excellent faculty. It was due to their suggestions and recommendations that we were able to find the tutors we needed to cover the requests we received. Sometimes I just stand at the door of the Tutorial Center and marvel at the diligent and dedicated tutors we have and what they do to help our students thrive at VU. I am truly humbled and so grateful to be a part of this program.
Our new Supplemental Instruction (SI) program launched in August 2016, and with the steadfastness and enthusiasm of eleven of VU’s best and brightest math and science students serving as our SI leaders, this program has thrived as well. When the SI leaders were asked if they felt the SI program was valuable, one of the them replied, “Yes, when a student hears a Stats lecture for the first time, it’s like hearing something in a foreign language and it can be overwhelming. Going over the material again as a group in our SI session supports and reinforces what was heard in the lecture, and then it doesn’t seem so foreign. That’s when I see the light bulb come on in people’s heads!” Again, we could not have done it without the support and participation of the phenomenal faculty who have allowed us to be a part of their classes.
From all of us here at the Tutorial Center – Have a Blessed New Year!
News from Academic Writing and Research Office
The Summer Undergraduate Research Program (SURP) initially launched in 2007 and has expanded over the years. The program supports collaborative Undergraduate Research (UGR). Research at Undergraduate Institutions is dynamic, but drastically different from the type graduate research that occurs at major research institutions. It allows students to learn the conventions of research through imitation and practice, and is an essential part of the internal transformation that takes place as a student begins to understand what it means to be a scholar and a researcher.
SURP is the embodiment of the undergraduate research experience at Vanguard and invites students to engage in an intensive research immersion experience in which selected students live on campus for ~9 weeks during the summer and engage in collaborative research on your project and in your lab! The program pays a modest stipend for the students’ stipends and faculty. Although each discipline is different, it is expected that this immersion experience be authentic. SURP welcomes all forms of collaborative faculty-student projects across any and all disciplines, knowing that the format maybe slightly different from one another. All projects, however, are to have a research proposal, a formal Poster, and a brief summary from the faculty at the conclusion of the project.
The first week (this year, the program runs May 15- July 14, 2017) is typically filled with Orientation, library training, ethics lectures, an introduction to research methods, safety training (especially for the empirical students), and one-on-one time with a mentor to formulate a project. The student spends time in the library and at home preparing a research proposal that they submit to BOTH their mentor and the Research Coordinator.
During the rest of the time, the student works one-on-one or in small groups with a faculty mentor. All SURP students and faculty meet jointly once a week for a Collaborative group research meeting, and at the end of the program there is a poster session in which students may present their research for their peers and the public.
If you are interested in becoming a SURP faculty mentor this year, please fill out a simple form on the IFD website with your research project title and description. All inquiries should be made by January 20th, 2017. For additional information, please contact either Tara Sirvent (email@example.com) or Philip Newlin (firstname.lastname@example.org) in the Office of Academic Writing and Research.
News from Educational Technology
As you look toward leveraging Canvas this semester, here are some resources that will help you in that endeavor:
Canvas Guides (instructor, student, polls for Canvas, SpeedGrader, etc.)
Get inspired by our colleague through these Creative Uses of Canvas
If you haven’t used Canvas yet, getting started doesn’t mean you have to use each and every feature. Start small by creating your assignments (papers, tests, etc.) in Canvas, so students can have a centralized calendar of when everything in your course (and all their other courses) is due. Then, input student grades and provide feedback on those assignments using SpeedGrader.
Students will then be better able to know where they stand in your class. They can even manually enter what they predict they will score on future assignments and save what-if grade scenarios around if they do particularly well/poorly on remaining assignments.
News from Faculty Development
The funding has been completely restored for this academic year’s professional development funds. Take advantage of the opportunity to receive reimbursement for your faculty development activities by submitting your application to Irene Israel in the Institute for Faculty Development no later than Friday, January 31, 2017.
News from the Office of Institutional Diversity and Inclusion
January’s event will feature our own David Vasquez and a special guest leading a discussion on what might be in store for our country and students under the new presidential administration. Do you have insight to share on the topic? Please come out and join us!
In February we will host a Courageous conversation entitled: “They will know us by our love.” This conversation will focus on what our role is as Christians in support of people from LBGTQ communities.
President Beals has explicitly communicated it is time for Vanguard to step up and genuinely care for members of our community seeking answers regarding LGBTQ issues. Do you have a heart for young men and women wrestling with issues related to sexual identity and same sex relationships? Do you know of a local ministry that does well in caring for people wrestling with LGBTQ related issues? If so, please contact Dr. April Harris Akinloye at email@example.com.
March is Women’s History Month! Come join our Courageous Conversation that will focus on powerful women throughout the ages and how to harness the tools required to significantly impact this world for Christ!
News from Disabilities Services
Our Living Well Committee is a co-curricular collaborative fosters a Christ-centered community that promotes physical, emotional, spiritual and relational wellness for students in their personal and academic development. Our Disability Services Office has been on the committee and has hosted the “Finals Retreat” student event for several years. For our students, finals week one of the busiest and most stressful time of the year. It was important to Disability Services and the Living Well Committee to continue hosting such a fun and relaxing event. The Committee provides the opportunity for students to do an art activity, physical activity, grab healthy snacks, and even pet one of the therapy dogs from BARK. We also have many faculty and staff stop by each semester to pet a dog, even our own President Beals loves to stop by an enjoy the festivities. This year’s theme was: Coffee, Study, Finals, BREAK!
News from Nursing
Concordia and Vanguard University partnered to become an honor society (Orange County Christian Nurses Honor Society) to foster the professional growth of our nursing students. After several years of chapter development, we recently became a formal Sigma Theta Tau Internal (STTI) chapter. Our chapter name is Psi Theta-at-Large Chapter. Our chapter name is Psi Theta-at-Large Chapter; at-large means that more than one school has partnered to become an honor society (Concordia University and Vanguard University). STTI, the only international nursing honor society worldwide, is a global community of nurse leaders with members belonging to more than 486 chapters who live in over 90 countries. Through this network, members lead in using knowledge, scholarship, service, and learning to improve the health of the world’s people.
We held an Induction Ceremony on Saturday, December 10th from 10am to 12pm at the Concordia University, Irvine campus. A picture of the inductees and chapter leaders is provided below. The day was a fun celebration and many thanks to Dr. Mike Wilson for being there to share in the excitement of the day with the Vanguard and Concordia nursing students and faculty.