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Provost's Monthy Report
Provost Monthly Report: March 2019

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

  • Continued preparation for the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE) site team visit to the College scheduled for April 7-10, 2019, with numerous presentations and discussions held throughout the campus with various stakeholders.

  • Academic Affairs submitted requests to MSCHE for approval of substantive changes for two fully online certificate programs from the School of Education: the Advanced Certificate in Gifted and Talented Education and the Advanced Certificate in Health Education (CUNY’s only such program for health education teachers). Both certificate programs respond to labor market needs based on New York State Department of Labor’s Long-Term Occupational Employment Projections for 2016-2026 and discussions with the New York City Department of Education respectively.
  • Dr. Casey Green presented data to the Provost/Deans’ Council on the national landscape for the utilization of technology-enhanced learning-TEL (e.g. digital learning platforms such as adaptive learning courseware) to redesign courses in ways that support and improve student learning, especially in courses with high DFW rates, and ultimately increase retention and graduation. Dr. Green served as Project Director of a major digital learning initiative of the national Association of Chief Academic Officers (ACAO) funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The 18-month initiative, which concluded in March 2019, involved chief academic officers from 32 colleges/universities, selected in 2017 through a national competition as Digital Fellows to participate in the project. Dr. Nwosu was one of the Digital Fellows. Academic Affairs has begun a systematic review of courses with high DFW rates with a view to expanding the use of TEL in improving student learning, retention, and graduation, an approach already used by the departments of Chemistry and Mathematics in the School of Natural and Social Sciences. It is expected that this approach will further help to accelerate our 90x30 goal.

  • Participated in the Academic Council meeting of March 13 chaired by Interim Chancellor Vita Rabinowitz, who also serves as the University Provost. Issues discussed include CAO priorities for the Academic Year, presentation of Bronx Community College Academic Master Plan by Kenneth Adams, Dean of Workforce and Economic Development and Alexander Ott, Associate Dean for Curriculum Matters and Academic Programs, and presentation on Women in Technology (WiTNY), by Andrea Shapiro Davis and Judy Spitz, Founding program Director of WiTNY.

  • The Bronx Transfer Affinity Group (BTAG), an association of CUNY’s three colleges in the Bronx (Lehman, BCC, Hostos) plus Guttmann, hosted the group’s first-ever Transfer Advising Summit at Lehman on March 22. BTAG presidents, chief academic officers, several senior leaders, and academic advisors attended the summit, as well as academic officials from CUNY. Issues addressed at the summit included financial aid, articulation agreements, advising technologies, and the hurdles that transfer students face. A panel of current Lehman students who transferred from the BTAG schools also shared their lived experiences with transfer process. The summit’s keynote speaker Dr. Alexandra Logue, presented national data on what researchers describe as the leaky pipeline, a phenomenon that hampers community college students’ ability to experience seamless transfer and completion of their bachelor’s degree programs. She described the summit as “just one more piece of evidence demonstrating the very high-quality work that BTAG is doing,” noting that BTAG is “a marvel and a model for, not only the rest of CUNY, but for all of our nation’s institutions of higher education.” Provost Nwosu welcomed participants to the summit, and President Cruz spoke about Lehman’s commitment to the 90x30 challenge as a critical tool for advancing educational attainment in the borough. Deputy Bronx Borough President, Marricka Scott-McFadden, a Lehman alumna spoke at the summit, and presented Proclamations to the four BTAG presidents (José Luis Cruz-Lehman; Thomas A. Isekenegbe-BCC; Scott E. Evenbeck-Guttman; and David Gómez-Hostos), and to CUNY, represented by Dr. Donna Linderman, Associate Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs. Interim Chancellor Vita Rabinowitz provided special greetings to participants at lunch meeting.
  • CUNY Office of Academic Affairs and the CUNY Advisement Council will hold an advisement summit in early June that will be focused on transfer. Details on the advisement summit will be forthcoming.

  • The CUNY Consortium on Food and Housing Insecurity hosted a major gathering at Lehman to release its 2019 Report. Faculty, staff, and students, as well as CUNY officials attended the event hosted by Lehman’s Office of Student Affairs led by Vice President Joseph Magdaleno. Research author and leader, Dr. Sara Goldrick-Rab, Professor of Higher Education Policy and Sociology at Temple University, presented the Report, which included Lehman data. Provost Nwosu welcomed participants to the event on behalf of President Cruz.

  • Engaged in several exploratory discussions with campus stakeholders and potential external partners focused on NYC’s success and inclusive growth with the goal to expand the footprint for career pathways, internship and job placements opportunities for Lehman students and graduates.

  • Joined President Cruz and Dr. Teresita Levy, Director, Office of Global Engagement, in a meeting on March 15 with President Carlos Andujara of the University of Puerto Rico.

  • Continued planning for the launch of Lehman’s involvement with the 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 this 15-month project to refine and validate an institutional transformation process that advances students’ success.

  • Thrilled to join President Cruz and members of the campus community at the School of Arts and Humanities Conversations at 50 event on March 19 celebrating the history of the school. Several alumni of the school participated in the celebrations, which included a presentation by Dean James Mahon reflecting on tradition and change as critical anchors and drivers for the school’s accomplishments in the last 50 years.

  • Participated in the Deans’ On-Boarding: Accelerating Success Series, which focused on the following: Overview of Student Affairs and its services, Workload and E-Processes, and Overview of Lehman’s Chapter of the PSC.

  • Provided welcome remarks at the Women’s History Month event celebrating the life and legacy of African-American Poet Ntozake Shange at the Library North Atrium on March 6. The Women’s Studies Program, the Urban Male Leadership Program, and the Leonard Lief Library hosted the event, with Maria Teresa “Maroposa” Fernandez, serving as special guest and keynote speaker.

  • Attended the 101st Annual meeting of the American Council on Education (ACE), as well as the ACE Council of Fellows annual meeting, held from March 8-12 in Philadelphia. Participated in the focus group discussion with select academic leaders on re-envisioning ACE’s leadership development programs, facilitated a session on leadership transitions, and served as mentor to a select group of emerging higher education leaders. President Cruz and Provost Nwosu also attended the ACE Closing Plenary Session on March 12, where Lehman student, Jonathan Yubi Gomez, an Art Major joined a diverse student panel, which included three students from other institutions, to engage in a conversation on a human-centered approach to how public policy and institutional practice could be designed from the bottom up to enhance student outcomes and get students across the completion finish line. John B. King, Jr., former Secretary of Education, U.S. Department of Education, and President and CEO, The Education Trust, moderated the session attended by presidents/chancellors, chief academic officers, and other university/college leaders.

  • Participated in the final convening in Philadelphia on March 8-10 of the Digital Fellows Project (DFP), an initiative of the Association of Chief Academic Officers (ACAO), funded through a major grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and designed to improve student success outcomes in gateway courses with high DFW rates, and presented a discussion paper on embedding assessment of student learning intentionally in course redesign involving technology enhanced learning platforms.

  • President Cruz and Provost Nwosu participated in the March 21 meeting of the Academic Assessment Council (AAC), where the President formally charged the council regarding its role and responsibilities. Provost Nwosu presented an overview of Assessment at Lehman and Across the Country, while Interim Dean for Academic Affairs Dan Lemons led a discussion on challenges and opportunities for assessment at Lehman. AAC members comprise the following: Samira Bahrami (SCPS), Stanley Bazile (Student Affairs), Raymond Galinski (OIRPA), Claudette Gordon (Education), Sharon Jordan (Art), Donna McGregor (Chemistry), Zoila Morell (Education), Vincent Prohaska (Convener), Evan Senreich (Social Work), Donald Sutherland (OIRPA), and Devrim Yavuz (Sociology).

  • Joined President Cruz in welcoming this year’s Sweeny Lecturer, Dr. Joseph Francisco at his office on March 22. Also joined faculty, staff, and students in attending the Sweeny Lecture at the Music Building Auditorium, moderated by Andrei Jitianu, chair, department of Chemistry. Dr. Francisco, a graduate of MIT is a highly respected chemical physicist, a recipient of numerous national awards (e.g. John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship, Percy L. Julian Award for Pure and Applied Research), a Fellow of the American Chemical Society, American Physical Society, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and a member of the National Academy of Sciences. He served as member of the President’s Committee on the National Medal of Science during the Obama Administration serving the term from 2010-2015.

  • Administered and completed the survey of department chairs designed to identify topical areas for leading and managing the academic unit for which professional development opportunities will be provided to support department chairs. This is part of the Provost’s Professional Development Series (PPDS), an initiative in Academic Affairs designed to empower academic leaders for success.

  • President Cruz announced the formation of a 13-member Task Force on reimagining the School of Continuing and Professional Studies (SCPS). Co-chaired by Dr. Jane MacKillop, Dean of the SCPS and Dr. Dene Hurley, Chair of Economics and Business, the taskforce will examine SCPS’s current role at the college and identify strategies to align it more closely with the schools of Arts and Humanities, Natural and Social Sciences, Health Sciences, Human Services and Nursing, and the School of Education. The taskforce has 45 days to complete its work, and submit a formal report, which includes recommendations, to the Provost in May 2019.
  • Continued weekly 1:1 meetings with President Cruz; and monthly joint meeting with President Cruz and Dr. Dan Lemons, Interim Dean for Academic Affairs.

  • Continued 1:1 meetings with School Deans and members of the Provost’s Council and the President’s Cabinet.

  • Chaired the President’s Senior Leadership Team (SLT) meeting, with coordination from Jonathan Gagliardi, Assistant Vice President for Policy, Strategy, and Research and Chief of Staff to the Cabinet. SLT consists of members of the President’s Cabinet (excludes the President), and serves as the platform for strategic conversations designed to advance college goals and the president’s priorities.

  • Met with the leadership of the Student Government Association (SGA) on March 18, and discussed several issues and answered questions on student success at Lehman.

  • Joined Dr. Cruz on March 20 in Pizza with the President, a forum where students ask questions of the President on issues of concern to them. The forum was held at the Student Life Building, and was well attended by students.

  • Attended the College Senate meeting on March 6, and a meeting of the Senate Committee on Governance as a designee of President Cruz.

  • Met with Dr. Janette Tilley, Chair, 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 March 1 to discuss Spring 2019 candidate promotion files.

  • Participated in the Faculty Personnel and Budget (FP&B) Committee meeting held on March 26, and chaired the meeting on behalf of President Cruz. Esdras Tulier, Executive Counsel and Labor Designee, presented information on adjunct notification and department scholarship statements. Provost announced a pause in the use of scholarship statements developed by departments for faculty personnel review, and will initiate a consultative review process for guidelines developed by departments across the schools. In the meantime, existing College and CUNY policies remain the standard for reappointment, promotion, and tenure.

  • The School of Education (SOE) led by Interim Dean Gaoyin Qian, hosted the March 28 rotating meeting of the Provosts/Deans’ Council. Department chairs and program directors presented overviews of their units, which were followed by discussions and questions from council members. SOE also took council members on a tour of some of its major facilities, which included the edTPA lab, Student Academic Success Office, and the Leap to Teacher Office. The rotating meetings are designed to inform and educate campus leaders about each other’s work, minimize silos, improve efficiencies, and increase opportunity for collaboration among units.

  • Continued meetings with Christina Chiappa, CUNY Deputy Chief Financial Officer, and Bethania Ortega, Director, Budget and Planning in the Division of Administration, to discuss College and Academic Affairs Budgets with a focus on improving efficiencies.

  • Announced the appointment of Brandon Begarly as permanent director, Office of Research and Sponsored Programs (ORSP), following a national search. Dr. Elin Waring, Interim Dean, School of Health Sciences, Health Services, and Nursing, chaired the search committee.

  • Interviewed finalists for full-time faculty positions in the following academic units: Economics and Business (Accounting), Social Work, Philosophy, and Africana Studies.

  • Completed full-time faculty searches and appointments in Economics & Business (NSS), and Social Work (HS2N).
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.