UPDATE 8: Students First: Academic &Student Affairs

This is the eighth in a series of emails about student success work in the Capital-East Region and in Connecticut overall. In this issue, we’ll provide some updates about the work of the Students First Academic and Student Affairs Consolidation Committee  (SF ASA CC), including the General Education, Shared Governance, and Curriculum Alignment Work Groups.
Previous emails are available online.


News and Updates

The Connecticut Board of Regents for Higher Education (BOR) approved the Students First plan in March of 2018, and the Revised Students First plan in June of 2018. The Students First Academic and Student Affairs Consolidation Committee (SF ASA CC) is focused on providing guidance to the faculty, staff, and administrators of the 12 community colleges as they work together to develop a general education core and a shared governance proposal as well as align academic programs, policies, institutional data, websites, catalogs, and other relevant matters for the One College.


General Education (Gen Ed)

The Gen Ed work group of the SF ASA CC is creating a Gen Ed core curriculum proposal that will align well with Framework 30. The work group created an initial proposal that was sent to the colleges and to FIRC for feedback. The Gen Ed work group is currently incorporating that feedback, revising the language, and finalizing the proposal. The goal is for the revised proposal to be presented to SF ASA CC by October 2019. Once the proposal is approved by SF ASA CC, it will be sent to the individual colleges for endorsement by their governance bodies. The SF ASA CC will receive the endorsement vote tally and feedback, and will subsequently either return the proposal to the Gen Ed work group for further revision or forward to the College Consolidation Implementation Committee (CCIC) (and subsequently the BOR) for approval.


Shared Governance

The Shared Governance work group of the SF ASA CC is developing a common definition of shared governance and a proposal for shared governance for the One College.


Curriculum Alignment

Faculty are developing common, aligned programs for the One College. The discussions kicked off in November 2018 with a round of 22 faculty work groups, the second round followed with 11 work groups, and the third and final round will meet and begin their work in October 2019. Over 300 faculty are involved in program alignment for the One College. A major part of the alignment work will require faculty work groups to develop common curricula, outcomes, pre-requisites, and course numbers. The first round is expected to have completed the work by February 2020 and the second and third rounds are expected to be completed by December 2020. View the programs in each round of alignment (pdf).
The approval process for curriculum alignment, including the common general education core, is based on the governance process followed for the CSCU Transfer and Articulation Policy. More details about the approval process can be found on page 17 of the NECHE update.


Additional Work Groups

An Academic and Student Affairs Policy work group of SF ASA CC has begun reviewing the current policies, procedures, and processes for the 12 colleges and will work towards alignment of these for the One College. SF ASA CC is also forming additional work groups to evaluate community connections, dual & concurrent enrollment, learning outcomes & assessment, and specialized accredited programs for the One College.

Program Alignment Team

Pat Bouffard and Mike Stefanowicz are leading the SF ASA CC group. Susan Barzottini and Kim Sorrentino, both faculty from the community colleges, have recently joined the SF ASA CC team to facilitate the work on course alignment and assist the faculty work groups.
Susan Barzottini is a Professor of Information Management and Technology at Manchester Community College (MCC). She has been teaching in the Business, Paralegal, and Technology department at MCC since 2004. Professor Barzottini served as the Interim Division Director for MCC Social Science, Business and Professional Careers Division last year and has been the MCC New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE) liaison since 2011.
Kim Sorrentino is an Associate Professor in the Diagnostic Medical Sonography (DMS) Program at Gateway Community College (GCC). She has been teaching at GCC as the DMS Clinical Coordinator since 2015. Kim is a tri-chair for the GCC NECHE Committee and a member of the GCC Achieving the Dream Committee. She serves as a site visitor for NECHE and the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs.

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In CSCU Student Success Update #9, which we’ll email in October, we’ll present the annual Student Success Key Performance Indicators data.

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