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A Note from the President

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Fall 2014 A Note from the President When I left WITC a few years ago I remember talking to a few people about what the College might look like in a year or two. Without thinking about it very much, I commented
Fall 2014 A Note from the President When I left WITC a few years ago I remember talking to a few people about what the College might look like in a year or two. Without thinking about it very much, I commented that I'd be disappointed if there weren't recognizable changes every few months. My experience at the College told me that there would be internal and external challenges to the status quo, and that the tension the challenges caused would almost always be used to make WITC a better place. I observed the positive results of your desire to continually get better time and again, and being part of the improvements was something I knew I'd miss. Fast forward nearly four years, and I can point to specific examples of how the College has improved. The Educational Technology Center concept was created and implemented, bridge instruction has 1 been piloted with great success, student engagement and student satisfaction have improved and are at the high end of national benchmarks, our IPEDS cohort retention and graduation rates are above the 95 th percentile nationally, various re accreditation activities have successfully occurred, a new employee engagement tool has been implemented, WITC has been recognized for a meritorious budget award, and there are many other institutional, departmental, and individual achievements that I'm not listing that I'm sure could fill this page. Many of our most significant challenges are addressed through AQIP action projects. We put our accreditation on the line as we tackle major issues such as assessment, communication, college and divisional metrics, and culture. We don't always get to a perfect end point, but we consistently get better and, at minimum, we understand our issues in a more meaningful way. I think our work through AQIP also sets the stage for our institution to take risks in its strategic plan, in departmental goals, and in the important work that each of us does to make WITC a special place. As I've gotten up to speed on what has happened at WITC since I left, I'm reminded of that conversation a few years ago. I'm proud to see continuous improvement throughout so many areas of our College. I'm looking forward to being part of the next stage of WITC's journey and am especially excited to be working with all of you again. Strategic Planning Strategic Planning Summit On July 29, 2014, several staff members from every college division met at the Superior Campus to review the draft strategic planning action items. The action items were developed by each division from the Goals, Objectives & Themes finalized by the Quality Improvement Steering Committee (QISC) and approved by President's Cabinet and the Board of Trustees. Many excellent comments and suggestions were discussed and documented for the next step of the planning process finalizing the action item outcomes and metrics for a final review by QISC in 2 February The strategic plan will go into effect July 1, Stay tuned for further updates Strategic Goals, Objectives & Themes... Continuous Improvement Highlights 8 Stage Needs Analysis: This analysis is a new tool used to help the Continuing Education division plan and offer the right courses. The eight stages in this order are: Brainstorm Ideas, Research, Narrow down the options with a focus group, Model, Survey, Try It, Decide, and Evaluate. Click here to learn more about the stages and how the Continuing Education division is using them. Champion: Continuing Education Faculty Quality Assurance System: In March, 2013 the Wisconsin System Board of Trustees authorized amending Chapter TCS3 of the Wisconsin Administrative Code (certification) to implement a more flexible and effective system, Faculty Quality Assurance System (FQAS), with local involvement that will continue to ensure colleges hire high quality faculty who will be supported by ongoing professional development. The proposed changes are currently under review and will require final approval by both the Governor and the Joint Committee for the Review of Administrative Rules. The WTCS is operating on a business as usual basis as far as the certification process is concerned until the new system is finalized. Further information related to the FQAS can be accessed at: MyWTCS.edu: Faculty Quality Assurance System and Legislative Reference Bureau: Administrative Code & Register. Champion: Human Resources The Connection Redesign: After meeting with staff throughout the college, Technology Services listened to your requests and we are excited to share the newly designed Connection! Coming soon will be a drop down mega menu for each division that will list the most visited, important content for each division. Please take the time to check it out! Your comments and further ideas to approve would be appreciated. Please post them at Talk to Us . Champion: Technology Services Advertising Online: The Marketing department hired STAMATS, a leading higher education market research and integrated marketing communication company, to implement a plan for advertising online and SEO (Search Engine Optimization) Strategies, Implementation and Analysis. The goal of this test engagement was for WITC to obtain more and higher quality leads (prospects) via online techniques, while also creating a larger footprint in our online marketing of programs, program areas and general brand awareness. Champion: Student Affairs 3 Accreditation Updates Specialized Program Accreditations Emergency Medical Technician Paramedic, reaffirmation 2014 to 2018 Medical Assistant, reaffirmation 2014 to 2024 Occupational Therapy Assistant, reaffirmation 2014 to 2024 Health Information Technology, initial accreditaion visit September 2014 Nursing Associate Degree, accreditation visit September Academic Quality Improvement Program (AQIP) Cycle In August WITC received its official new AQIP Pathway eight year cycle. The next steps in our AQIP cycle are: Summer 2015 Begin work on WITC Systems Portfolio November 2015 Strategy Forum Fall 2016 Systems Portfolio Submitted to HLC View WITC's eight year cycle... 4 Register Now for the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) Annual Conference March 28 31, 2015 Chicago, IL HLC invites faculty and staff from its member institutions to attend its Annual Conference. The conference highlights best practices in higher education from around the country with over 200 general program sessions on topics such as assessment, organizational change, quality improvement, faculty development, learning environments, technology tools, pedagogy, collaboration, and retention to name just a few. Over 4,000 higher education professionals attended from approximately 850 institutions. View the program schedule and register at HLC Annual Conference Collection of Papers Each year, the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) publishes their annual conference's collection of papers. The 2014 Collection of Papers reflects an increased focus on student persistence, retention, and success. Issues of leadership and accountability are also well represented. Presenters share learning, tools and strategies, innovations, best practice, and research. Chapter 3 contributes another set of case studies to the Collection's twenty five year chronicle of institutional progress in Assessing and Improving Student Learning. As well, HLC members offer their recent experiences in the Commission's accreditation processes with those just beginning those processes. View the 2014 Annual Conference Collection of Papers... AQIP Action Projects 5 Fostering a Culture Where All Employees Are Valued The Tenet of the Month recently came to a close in October as we have cycled through all of the college's tenets. The College Culture Task Force hopes you found the monthly newsletters encouraging as well as a vehicle for you to be introspective of how each of us demonstrates and practices the tenets. Please continue to share your best practices on the tenet blog on the Connection. Thank you for your excellent discussions, reflections and sharing over the last year of our journey of It begins with me! The action project team coordinated and planned the student and employer panel at the October 14, 2014 inservice. This activity highlighted the successes that we have enjoyed as a college and shows we are committed to serving our students, employers, and communities within our district and beyond. The panel reinforced that which we may not acknowledge to ourselves often enough; that the work we do here reaches far beyond the walls of the college and it sometimes requires validation from people outside of WITC to remind us of our vital role for so many. Based on your input on the employee satisfaction survey, the College Culture Task Force collaborated with the Human Resources department in the formation of the Benefits Advisory Committee. The newly formed committee now provides the HR staff with additional insight on employee benefits. Lastly, the Noel Levitz College Employee Satisfaction Survey (CESS) will continue to be the survey tool utilized as the college's employee satisfaction survey. This survey will be administered every 3 years starting in the Fall of The data will be analyzed and compared against our baseline survey that staff completed in the Spring of Once the results have been compiled, the team will analyze those and recommend next steps. It Begins With Me! And Continues With Us! Submitted by: Co chairs: Craig Fowler (VP, Continuing Education), Dan Cooper (Economics Instructor) Team Members: Jennifer Bednarik, Aleesha Drost, Sharon Duthie, Shane Evenson, Leslie Larsen, Barb Lundberg, Barb Malom, Jim Melin, Jodi Saliny, Jerry Secord, and Dave Shipley Aligning our Student Learning Assessment Initiatives 6 This AQIP project team identified and started to unpack each of the major processes identified with academic assessment. These processes are Collegewide Outcome assessment (CWO), Technical Skills Attainment assessment (TSA), and Academic Program Review. For each process the team is charting the path of the process, defining strengths and weaknesses, and cataloging a list of suggested improvements to the process. The CWO process was put through this in depth review last fiscal year. The team chose to start with this process because it is the one that causes the most frustration to faculty. The Higher Learning Commission (HLC) systems appraisal reviewers also highlighted some issues with this particular process. They identified the structural timeline as too lengthy, and they noted that the college could improve how it uses CWO assessment to make documented changes to programs. The CWO process is vital to the fulfilling the tenet that all decisions are data driven; thus was a logical starting point for the team. As noted above, the team completed a self education about the CWO process this past spring, researched best practices for assessing CWO, and compiled a list of suggestions for change. In mid October, the team reviewed and started an evaluation of the TSA process; as well as discussing possible suggestions for streamlining the processes. This included a discussion with the College's assessment team. As determined in our original goal, in December, we will be reviewing and educating ourselves on the Academic Program Review process. A project timeline has been agreed upon by the team going forward. Please watch your s for updates! Submitted by: Co chairs: Bonny Copenhaver (VP, Academic Affairs), Steve Miller (Industrial Maintenance Instructor) Team Members: Laura Schulte, Kari Merritt, Alesha Hladilek, Trudy Kroeger, Sara Noreen, Phil Drazkowski, Laura Wassenaar, Cindy King, and Andrea Schullo Developing Divisional and Collegewide Measurements WITC's College Effectiveness Measures were shared with all staff at the August 14, 2014 inservice. The high level version of these measures is shown below and is also available on The Connection at the home page for Institutional Effectiveness. 7 Measurements and the levels for green/yellow/red (called signal values ) were recommended by appropriate College departments/teams such as WITC's Retention Team. Examples of benchmarks are the Wisconsin Technical College System (WTCS) and the National Community College Benchmark Program (NCCBP). The measures were also aligned with the new WTCS Performance Based Funding system, where applicable. A link to the detail of all measurements is provided above the chart on the Institutional Effectiveness home page or at this link. Coinciding with the overall College Effectiveness Measures, all seven of the College's divisions have been drafting, reviewing, and testing metrics that are specific to their divisional operations. The target date for completion of these metrics is the end of the spring term with a plan to link to each division's metrics off this same page on The Connection. Submitted by: Chair: Ellen Riely Hauser (VP, Institutional Effectiveness) If you have any questions or suggestions regarding this newsletter, please contact Becka at 8 9
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