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This Week At Lehman Graphic
Provost Monthly Report: February 2019

This Provost's Monthly Report for February 2019 provides highlights of a select number of activities and initiatives within the Division of Academic Affairs and Student Success and the College to advance our institutional mission and the President's priorities.

  • Our Self-Study and Compliance Certification Reports were successfully submitted to the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE) on February 26; thanks to the exceptional work done by the campus community, the MSCHE Steering and Executive Committees, and the leadership and staff in both the Office of the President and the Division of Academic Affairs and Student Success. MSCHE's site visit to the campus is scheduled for April 7-10, 2019.
  • Participated in the Student Success Council meeting held on February 27. SSC's work is informed by the 90x30 challenge, with a focus on enhancing access and engagement, retention, graduation, and post-graduation experiences. SSC members include associate deans and key staff from academic affairs, enrollment management, institutional research, and student affairs.

  • Participated in the Enrollment Management "funnel huddle" team meeting designed to address issues related to enrollment. Collaboratively, the team proactively engages students during enrollment periods while simultaneously addressing enrollment bottlenecks as they arise. The team includes leadership from Administration and Finance, Enrollment Management, and Student Affairs.

  • Participated in the ACE (Accelerate, Complete, and Engage) Program launch meeting held February 25, 2019 to review program requirements and finalize development of two and four year degree maps. VP of Enrollment, Interim Dean of Academic Affairs, Associate Deans, chairs of ACE majors and members of the ACE Core Planning Team participated in the meeting. ACE is Lehman's baccalaureate completion program designed to improve four-year graduation rates. The program, funded by the Robin Hood Foundation, with support from CUNY, will begin in Fall 2019, and will support an initial cohort of 250 students (125 first-time, full-time freshmen, and 125 full-time transfer students who enter with an associate degree). Participating academic units are Anthropology, Biology, Chemistry, Business Administration, Computer Graphics and Imaging, Dietetics, Foods, and Nutrition, Economics, English, Film and TV Studies, History, Journalism, Media Communications Studies, Philosophy, Sociology, and Therapeutic Recreation.
  • Participated in the Academic Council meeting of February 13 chaired by Interim Chancellor Vita Rabinowitz, who also serves as the University Provost. Issues discussed include University Budget Requests to State/City; Report from CUNY's Provosts' Retreat held in November 2018; University policy on student evaluation of teaching; and Course Equivalencies as they relate to transfer. Chancellor Rabinowitz welcomed two new members to the Council: Lehman's Provost Nwosu and Provost Michael Parrish from College of Staten Island (CSI). The Academic Council also learned the following: CUNY joined a national network supporting Public Interest Technology; and CUNY Law School will host a conference on social justice and emerging technologies on April 12.

  • Joined President Cruz and Interim Dean Pamela Mills in the February 6 meeting of Alliance Presidents and Deans Council participating in the newly funded New York City Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (LSAMP). Interim Chancellor Vita Rabinowitz hosted the meeting, which was held at CUNY Central. The following institutions are in the alliance: Lehman College (lead institution, with President Cruz as PI), Brooklyn College, College of Staten Island, NYCCT, Queens College, BCC, Guttman Community College, Hostos Community College, CCNY-GSOE, Baruch College, and Medgar Evers College. LSAMP is funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF), and the program provides support to universities and colleges in diversifying the nation's science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) workforce by increasing the number of STEM baccalaureate and graduate degrees awarded to populations historically underrepresented in these disciplines.
  • Thrilled to join the campus community on February 20 in a very warm community reception for the Provost hosted by President Cruz. The quality of the reception, the number and stature of the attendees, (which included faculty, staff, students, trustees, alumni, legislators/council members, Mrs. Judith Dimon, wife of Jamie Dimon of JP Morgan, a number of CUNY Presidents and Chief Academic Officers, and CUNY leadership represented by Interim Chancellor Vita Rabinowitz), as well as the extraordinary feelings in the room, were all evidence of the goodwill that Lehman College has garnered from across our nation and our city under the leadership of President Cruz. I was touched by the note I received from Interim Chancellor Rabinowitz the day after the reception: "The highlight of the program for me, and, I suspect, for many others," she wrote "were your own moving words and your remarkable personal journey, symbolized humbly and beautifully by your shoes. As you well know, many of our students have stories like yours, and for a moment yesterday, I imagined them all, each with a personal symbol of how far they have come in their education, their identities, their aspirations." I was touched and humbled by the reception, and I thank the campus community for this remarkable welcome. Also, was delighted to join the welcome reception for the Provost on February 8 with members of the President's Cabinet and the Provost's Search Committee.
  • Represented President Cruz in a meeting with a visiting delegation from Japan's Toyohashi University of Technology (TUT) on February 10. The five-member delegation, led by Professor Atsunori Matsuda, TUT's Vice President for International Affairs, was at Lehman to discuss potential collaboration opportunities between TUT and Lehman. The visit was coordinated by Dr. Teresita Levy, Director, Lehman's Center for Global Engagement and Dr. Andrei Jitianu, Chair, Department of Chemistry.

  • Met with CEO and Founder of Braven, Aimee Eubanks Davis, to discuss potential career pathway opportunities for Lehman students. Provost's Chief of Staff Melissa Kirk joined the meeting. Braven works with colleges to ensure that underrepresented students develop the critical skills, experiences and networks to secure strong first jobs following graduation.

  • Joined President Cruz in a meeting to discuss the launch of the college's student success partnership with the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU). Lehman is one of six institutions selected by AASCU to participate in a 15-month project to refine and validate an institutional transformation process that advances students success. In collaboration with five participating AASCU member institutions (Austin Peay State University, Bowie State University, California State University-San Bernardino, Henderson State University, and Northwest Missouri State University), our campus will have the opportunity to connect, share tools and expertise, and exchange promising practices to promote our 90x30 challenge and other student success initiatives. In attendance at this convening were Reine Sarmiento, Jonathan Gagliardi, Richard Finger, and AASCU colleagues, Robin Ellis, George Mehaffy, Bao Le, Cameron Smither and Nyala Watkins.

  • Met with Beth Lief of the Petrie Foundation and Donna Linderman, CUNY's Associate Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, to discuss additional funding in support of Lehman's ACE (Accelerate, Complete, Engage) program expected to launch in fall 2019. Vice President Susan Ebersole hosted the meeting. In attendance were Daniel Lemons and Reine Sarmiento.
  • Visited The APEX, Lehman's state of the art sports and fitness center, on February 1 and was taken on a tour of the facility by the Director of Athletics, Dr. Martin Zwiren, accompanied by Dr. Reine T. Sarmiento, Associate Provost and Vice President for Enrollment Management, Mr. José Magdaleno, Vice President for Student Affairs, and Ms. Maria Camaj, Administrative Executive Assistant to the Provost. This $57M impressive facility designed by Rafael Vinoly, and built in 1994, houses an Olympic-sized swimming pool, a main gymnasium and an auxiliary teaching gymnasium, a basketball and volleyball arena, racquetball courts, ballet studio, jogging track, aerobics studio, fitness center, free weight and locker rooms, and saunas, as well as offices and classrooms. The facility is open to all Lehman students at no charge. CUNY students, faculty, staff, alumni, with valid ID cards are eligible to become members of The APEX at a charge.

  • Visited the Testing and Scholarships Office and the Pathways to Student STEM Success Program, and met with program director, Raphael Gonzalez, and several students enrolled in the program.
  • Provost Nwosu was cited in the February 15 issue of The Washington Post on a feature story, which focused on adjunct faculty. The article is titled "`It keeps you nice and disposable': The plight of adjunct professors." The link is provided below: http://tinyurl.com/y548hpk2
  • Participated in the Labor-Management meeting held on February 20. Esdras Tulier, Interim Counsel to the President and Labor Designee, led the management team, while Robert Farrell, Associate Professor and Coordinator of Information Literacy and Assessment at the Leonard Lief Library, led the labor team.

  • Participated in the President's Leadership Retreat on February 21 and 22, along with other Cabinet members, and all five deans. The two-day retreat was held on campus and was facilitated by Dr. Jolene Koester, former President, California State University, Northridge.

  • Participated in the Funnel Huddle meeting of directors and lead staff from Enrollment Management, Student Affairs, and Finance and Administration on February 25. The team works together to manage and streamline processes and practices that support and enhance student outreach and admissions to the College. President Cruz joined the meeting and thanked team members for their work.

  • Participated in the first FP and B Committee meeting on February 19; presented the Report of the Provost. Summarized six (6) Thematic Priorities that emerged from Provost's direct reports: curricular renewal and innovation; enrollment and student success; research and entrepreneurship; building and developing the team; external engagement; and funding support and telling our story. The three takeaways from the emerging thematic priorities focused on: 1) strengthening Lehman's long-term health and financial sustainability; 2) transforming lives and igniting new possibilities through education, empowerment, and engagement, and 3) enhancing Lehman's regional and national reputation as the major anchor institution in the Bronx and a national engine of economic mobility and opportunity.

  • Held 1:1 breakfast meeting with Dr. Claudia Schrader, President, CUNY's Kingsborough Community College (KCC) to discuss Bronx Transfer Affinity Group (BTAG) and related student success matters. President Schrader previously served as Provost, Bronx Community College (BCC). Also held 1:1 meeting with BCC President, Dr. Thomas Isekenegbe.

  • Participated in Deans' On-Boarding: Accelerating Success Series held on February 7. Ms. Susan Ebersole, Vice President for Institutional Advancement (IA) and Executive Director, Lehman Foundation, presented an overview of IA to the group, and spoke about what deans can do to advance "friend raising" and "fund raising." Also, Ms. Rene Rotolo, Assistant Vice President for Campus Planning and Facilities and Executive in Charge of the Division of Administration and Finance, provided an overview and update of the College's proposed Teaching and Learning Center (TLC) to be located in the Old Gym.

  • Met with Carl Mazza, Chair, Department of Social Work; Anne Rice, Chair, General Faculty and Assistant Professor, Africana History and Women's Studies; Penny Prince, Associate Professor of Music and Graduate Program Coordinator on February 14 to discuss re-entry pipeline opportunity for prison inmates as part of Lehman's social justice agenda. Jane MacKillop, Dean, School of Continuing and Professional Studies and Daniel Lemons, Interim Dean of Academic Affairs participated in the meeting.
  • Continued weekly 1:1 meetings with President Cruz; and monthly joint meeting with President Cruz and Dr. Dan Lemons, Interim Dean for Academic Affairs.

  • Daily 1:1 meetings (twice) with Melissa Kirk, Chief of Staff, Office of the Provost.

  • Met with Dr. Joe Fera, new Chair, College Senate Governance Committee on February 6, and attended the meeting of the Committee as a designee of President Cruz.

  • Participated in the first spring 2019 meeting of the Sub-Committee on Tenure, Promotion and Certification of Continuous Employment (TPCCE) of the College Senate Committee of Faculty Personnel and Budget (FP&B) held on February 6. Provost formally charged the committee as it began its review of the portfolios of seven (7) faculty members up for promotions for this academic cycle. Provost requested the committee to be guided by College and System policies in their reviews and to utilize the framework provided by Ernest Boyer (Scholarship Reconsidered: Priorities of the Professoriate) in their review and discussion of each faculty portfolio. The TPCCE is comprised of nine (9) department chairs, and is chaired by Dr. Janette Tilley, Chair, Department of Music, Multimedia, Theater and Dance. Other members of the committee are: Kevin Sailor (Psychology); Cheryl Smith-Gabig (Speech Language-Hearing Sciences); Danna Ethan (Health Sciences); Haiping Cheng (Biological Sciences); Kofi Benefo (Sociology); Nancy Dubetz (Early Childhood and Childhood Education); Sean McCarthy (Art), and Wesley Pitts (Middle and High School Education). Ms. Debbie Rhem-Jackson in the Provost's Office provides administrative support to the committee.

  • Also participated in Deans and Chairs meeting with TPCCE held on February 27 to discuss candidates for promotion. Participating deans, chairs and senior P&B members were: Pam Mills (NSS); James Mahon (A&H); Gaoyin Qian (Education); Paula Loscocco (English); Cecelia Cutler (Early Childhood and Childhood Education); Mary Rogan (Economics and Business); Nancy Dubetz (Early Childhood and Childhood Education); and Janette Tilley (Music, Multimedia, Theater and Dance).

  • Held 1:1 meetings with a number of staff in the Provost's Office as part of the Provost's "Get to know you" initiative: Nestor Montilla, Manager, Adjunct Affairs; Edna Norman, Faculty Workload Specialist; Deborah Rhem-Jackson, Administrative Officer for Academic Personnel; and Alison Abreu, Faculty Development and Communication Specialist.

  • Held 1:1 meetings with the following members of the President's Cabinet: Dan Lemons, Interim Dean for Academic Affairs; Gladys Maldoon, Deputy to the President; José Magdaleno, Vice President for Student Affairs; Susan Ebersole, Vice President, Institutional Advancement; Jonathan Gagliardi, Chief of Staff to the Cabinet and Assistant Vice President for Strategy, Policy, and Analytics; Reine Sarmiento, Associate Provost and Vice President, Enrollment Management; Ron Bergmann, Vice President and Chief Information Officer.

  • Held 1:1 meeting with Vincent Prohaska, Interim Vice Provost for Academic Programs.

  • Held 1:1 meeting with Jeffrey Mathew, President, Student Government Association (SGA) on February 28. Discussions focused on several student success issues such as student participation in senate governance, university hour, textbook costs, and class scheduling.

  • Continued 1:1 meetings with the following Deans and the Chief Librarian: Pam Mills (NSS); James Mahon (A&H); Elin Waring (HSHSN); Gaoyin Qian (SOE); Jane MacKillop (SPCS); and Kenneth Schlesinger (LL).

  • Meeting with Interim Dean Pam Mills and Dr. Donna McGregor, Assistant Professor of Chemistry to discuss course redesign, innovative pedagogies, and student learning, and the potential opportunities of course redesign with technology for scaling up and scaling out our College's student success agenda and the 90x30 challenge. Dr. McGregor's work on course redesign has garnered national recognition. Her General Chemistry, a gateway course required for many science and medical-related majors with 35% pass rate was restructured in 2015 as a lecture-less hybrid course, incorporating the use of clickers and workshops. These modifications allowed students to complete most instruction outside class, and leverage freed-up class time to collaborate, resulting in a pass rate of more than 80% exceeding Lehman's pass rates for even its most effective lecture classes.

  • Met on February 14 with Christina Chiappa, CUNY Deputy Chief Financial Officer, and Bethania Ortega, Director, Budget and Planning in the Division of Administration and Finance, to discuss College and Academic Affairs Budgets.

  • Held 1:1 meeting with Dr. Olena Zhadko, Director, Online Education, on February 26, to discuss Lehman's online education and strategic direction.

  • Provided closing remarks at the New Faculty Orientation Seminar hosted by the Provost's office. The seminar, held at the Leonard Lief Library on February 25, included welcome remarks from Dan Lemons, Interim Dean, Academic Affairs, and presentations on tenure and promotions by Janette Tilley, Chair, TPCCE and Rosa McCutchen, Associate Professor (SOE). Information on Middle States Commission on Higher Education campus visit for Lehman's re-accreditation by Maria Camaj, Office of the Provost, Donald Sutherland, Institutional Research and Sarah Ramsey, Media Relations. Ms. Alison Abreu, Faculty Development and Communication Specialist in the Office of the Provost coordinated the new faculty orientation seminar.

  • Participated in the Joint Senate Budget Committee meeting held on February 27. Dr. Haiping Cheng chaired the meeting, with budget update from Bethania Ortega, Lehman Director of Budget and Planning, Christina Chiappa, CUNY Deputy Budget Officer, and Rene Rotolo, Executive in charge for Administration and Finance; Academic Affairs report from Provost Nwosu and Chief of Staff Melissa Kirk; and Lehman Foundation report from Susan Ebersole, Vice President for Institutional Advancement.

  • Attended the General Faculty meeting held on February 27, and provided updates on Academic Affairs. President Cruz also provided campus updates; Associate Dean Karin Beck provided updates on expectations for MSCHE site visit, and Robert Farrell, presented on funding for higher education. Anne Rice, Chair, Executive Committee of the General Faculty, presided over the meeting.

  • Convened meeting of the Deans/Provost Council on February 28 at CUNY on the Concourse, Lehman's facility on 2501 Grand Concourse, Bronx, with presentations from Dean MacKillop, Directors Samira Bahrami, Ludmila Ellis, Lawrence Fauntleroy, Goher Murtaza, Fanny Soriano, Clarence Stanley, John Frias, Manny Garcia, Associate Director, Hicania Gomez and Brenda Perez, of the School of Continuing and Professional Studies (SCPS). Two entrepreneurs who have benefitted from the services provided by SCPS's small business administration unit also presented to the Council.
  • Continued the search for a permanent director, Office of Research and Sponsored Programs (ORSP), with three finalists visiting the campus and meeting with the Search Committee, the Provost, and other members of the campus community. Dr. Elin Waring, Interim Dean (HS2N), is chairing the search committee.

  • Interviewed finalists for the full-time faculty positions in the Department of Mathematics and the Department of Economics and Business (Accounting position).

  • Completed the following full-time faculty searches and appointments: Monica Duncan, Assistant Professor in Music, Multimedia, Theatre & Dance (A&H) and Nicole Barreras, College Laboratory Technician (CLT) in Art (A&H).
The Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs is the College's chief academic officer and senior member of the Cabinet. The Provost is responsible for all educational programs, as well as for academic issues that relate to the faculty, including appointments, promotions, and evaluations. He also is responsible for preparing accreditation reviews, strategic planning, and the review of division and departmental budgets. Questions? Email alison.abreu@lehman.cuny.edu or call 718-960-8222.