It was great to attend the national conference this week of the Society for College and University Planners. These are folks who, by design (pun intended), think about the future of higher education and the issues that are shaping it. They are also folks who (as my co-presenter Barney Mansavage asked at our session) almost ALL are the ones who want to pack the car for family trips. They’re just organizers and planners.
One of my biggest takeaways was the increasing recognition that these folks and those on the more traditional academic side of the house need to be engaged with each other in consistent ways. As design-thinking across-the-board focuses more on users, universities need to be deeply engaged in how infrastructure reflects and enables our values and visions. Increasingly, I heard participants talk about “seeing the university from the point of view of the student,” whether this was about spaces or services.
I also appreciated keynote speaker Jeffrey Selingo (author of “There is Life After College”) identifying “ambiguity” as a challenge that today’s students will need to face, as they will be living in a world “where change is constant.” Indeed, we might think about “navigating change” as a learning outcome. What would it mean to “teach” how to navigate ambiguity and change? For me, one answer goes back to the ongoing debates about the role of liberal arts courses in today’s tech-focused world. The best way to understand and manage change is to be exposed to strategies of change that are the substance of art, literature, political science, etc. Another key for me would be providing students mechanisms for better understanding their own reactions to change and the discomfort it sometimes causes, helping them discover the linkages between being attuned to one’s own reactions and how that can help with discoveries, learning, and new breakthroughs.
Congratulations to the UW Bothell students who were awarded scholarships to support study abroad. Kudos to Philip Palios for being awarded a Fritz Scholarship, and to Alyssa King, Jessica Khaskhele, Yelena Mishkov, Juan Pena, Jessica Birchfield, Clayton Luis Avalos, and Kaylah Krueger for being awarded GO! Scholarships. International study is one of UW Bothell’s High Impact Practices that makes a significant difference in how students engage with their education.
Congratulations to Dr. Jeanne Heuving, recipient of this year’s UW Bothell Distinguished Research, Scholarship, and Creative Activity Award (DRSCA). Her most recent book, The Transmutation of Love and Avant-Garde Poetics, published in 2016, described as a “ground-breaking work that challenges the theoretical division of sex and love, desire and love that has been formative for work in the humanities and social sciences throughout the twentieth and twenty-first century.” Her 2004 book,, Incapacity, received Book of the Year Award from Small Press Traffic, an award from the National Endowment of the Humanities.
Leader of UW Bothell’s outstanding MFA in Creative Writing and Poetics, Jeanne has had a significant and lasting impact on our campus and the creative writing field.
Very proud to share President Cauce’s commitment to supporting transgender people on all three UW campuses. While national debates take place, our commitments to the UW community are clear and firm. Here is the statement from the President’s blog.
February 23, 2017
Transgender rights are human rights
Ana Mari Cauce
Yesterday, the US Departments of Education and Justice rescinded protections for transgender and non-binary students under Title IX, which prohibits sex discrimination in schools. The University of Washington and our state laws unequivocally recognize that transgender people deserve to be free from discrimination on the basis of gender expression and identity, and we will stand by these bedrock principles of equity and inclusion.
I want to reassure everyone on our campuses that at the UW, our support for trans and all LGBTQ students will not change. For example, working with our Q Center, the UW has undertaken a renovation project to make gender-neutral bathrooms available in most buildings within centralized campus. The Office of the Registrar gives all UW students campuses the option to have their preferred names appear in the UW Directory and other UW systems. The Q Center is also a great source for LGBTQ students and community members looking for resources and community support networks.
This is an issue of human rights and I urge our community to stand together, as well as to remember that each of us is different in countless ways but that our rights as people must be respected.
In the face of national pressures to counter Cybersecurity threats, UW Bothell has made a commitment to expanding our Cybersecurity efforts. We are proud to be home to the Center for Information Assurance and Cybersecurity (CIAC), a national resource center for Cybersecurity, under the leadership of Barbara Endicot-Popovsky, a recognized national leader in Cybersecurity Education and policy. We recently had the chance to host Lynne Clark, Director of the National Security Agency’s National Information Assurance Education and Training Program, who oversees the national resource centers and broad Cybersecurity education efforts for NSA. It was great to hear her perspective on the national need to increase graduates who are prepared to work in government and industry to address Cybersecurity risks. We’re proud to be part of that national effort through our academic programs, CIAC, and industry partnerships.
Here’s more information about Director Clark’s visit and CIAC’s work: http://www.uwb.edu/news/february-2017/cybersecurity-careers
As we honor Martin Luther King, Jr. today, I am reminded that, of his many inspirational truths, perhaps this one is most timely: “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”
Many thanks to the Coca-Cola Foundation for their generous gift of $100,000 to support ten First Generation UW Bothell students to achieve on-time graduation. Congratulations to Nora Abdi, Pedro Suarez, Xie C. “Tiger” Song, Michelle Cauich, Dureti Bilal, RebekaMekenon, Xuan D. Nguyen, Denisse Gonzalez, Janessa Agpaoa and MidhaduKedir.
In addition to receiving $2,500 a year for four years from the Coca-Cola Foundation, these students will benefit from the support infrastructure of UW Bothell’s First Year and Pre-Major and be required to participate in high-impact activities that have been shown to contribute to retention.
Another great story about the Digital Future Lab and its great work in preparing students for their work after graduation: http://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/education/uw-bothell-video-game-lab-helps-new-grads-on-nongeek-paths/
I am so proud that active duty soldiers, veterans and their families will be able to play the Digital Future Lab’s Ghostlight game for free this holiday season. Through a donation made to the non-profit organization Stack-Up, the DFL is making it possible for 10,000 military personnel to play this game. This gift is the largest single donation to Stack-Up since it was founded.
For the full story see https://www.uwb.edu/news/december-2016/digital-future-lab-donation