Registration Opens for the 2016 NAC&U Summer Institute

NAC&U's 2016 Summer Institute will take place on June 22 - 24 at Manhattan College in Riverdale, NY. This year's theme is "Supporting Student Success through Undergraduate Research" and a main focus will be student development through undergraduate research. The skills students develop through undergraduate research -- critical thinking, problem solving, communication, teamwork, questioning, tolerance for ambiguity -- are skills that will be helpful to students in any profession. The Summer Institute will explore possibilities to enhance the educational experience through a holistic approach for educating undergraduate students. 
Highlights of this year's Summer Institute and Pre-Conference Meetings include:
  • Specialized tracks for student affairs and civic engagement professionals
  • Faculty workload workshop with Jeffrey Osborn, Dean of Science, The College of New Jersey
  • Full day of networking and discussions for NAC&U Ambassadors on June 21
  • Convenient access to Manhattan via the #1 train from Manhattan College
Early bird registration (by April 30, 2016) is $325 per person (housing and transportation are separate). After the early bird period ends, registration will be $375 per person. Registration closes on May 25, 2016.

For more about the conference, including speakers, schedule, and travel and lodging, please visit our website.

To register for the Summer Institute, please click here
(Provosts, ambassadors, CEC members, and NAC&U board members should use the links sent to them via email since they will register for pre-conference meetings.)

Liberal Arts and STEM Education are not Mutually Exclusive
Thoughts from NAC&U Leadership

A recent article in the New York Times ("A Rising Call to Promote STEM Education and Cut Liberal Arts Funding," 2/21/16) was a disheartening look at how some politicians are taking a short-sighted view of liberal arts education. Member campuses of NAC&U, which purposefully integrate liberal arts, professional studies and civic engagement, will argue that a successful STEM major has both a strong technical and liberal arts background at graduation. Recently, NAC&U shared this message in Washington, DC, including at a Capitol Hill Briefing where Drury University graduate Evan Melgren said, "Industries need people to ask 'why' as much as it needs people to ask 'how,'" as he reflected on his multidisciplinary undergraduate experience working on a U.S. Solar Decathlon team alongside students in architecture, solar technology, art history, and nursing, to name a few. Read more.

Inaugural NAC&U Science Summit Held at Belmont

Last month, 40 faculty and staff in the STEM and related fields met at
Belmont University for NAC&U's first ever Science Summit. Participating campuses included Belmont University, John Carroll University, Manhattan College, Nazareth College, Ohio Northern University, Roger Williams University, Samford University, St. Edward's University, University of Evansville, University of New Haven, Valparaiso University, Wagner College, and Widener University.

While there, the participants discussed their research and explored cross-institutional research collaboration and proposal development. They talked about transformational education, convergence, incorporating undergraduate research into courses and a potential exchange program within NAC&U. Jim Gentile, past president of the Research Corporation for Science Advancement and former dean for the Natural and Applied Sciences at Hope College, facilitated the summit.

Science Summit participants toured the new science labs at Belmont.
Samford's Stephen Chew Produces Free Video Series on Effective Teaching

Samford University Department of Psychology Chair Stephen Chew, U.S. Professor of the Year in 2011, has produced five new public videos to complement his acclaimed series on How to Get the Most Out of Studying. The new video series - Cognitive Principles of Effective Teaching - calls on current research in cognitive psychology to help teachers improve the design, implementation and assessment of pedagogy. Supporting resources, transcripts and closed caption versions of the videos will be added, but the videos are now available for free public use at Samford's Center for Teaching, Learning and Scholarship. Chew has presented an annual convocation program on effective studying since 2006. The convocations proved to be so popular that Chew developed a public video series on the cognitive principles of learning, first posted in 2011. Learn more.

NAC&U Member News

Michael Austin Named Executive Vice President of Academic Affairs at UE
The University of Evansville has named Michael Austin as the University's executive vice president of academic affairs. He will begin his new duties on July 1. Austin earned his PhD in English literature from the University of California at Santa Barbara. He earned his MA and BA degrees in English from Brigham Young University. Austin has 15 years of experience in higher education administration at both public and private liberal arts institutions. He comes to UE from Newman University, where he was provost and vice president of academic affairs and a professor of English. Read more.

St. Edward's Recognized as Top Producer of Fulbright Scholars Among Master's Granting Universities, Nazareth and Redlands Also Among Top Producers
St. Edward's University was recognized as the top producer of Fulbright students among master's institutions, according to the Chronicle of Higher Education. During the past academic year, 26 students from St. Edward's applied for Fulbright awards. Half of those students were finalists and 10 won. Nazareth College and the University of Redlands were also recognized among the top producers of Fulbright scholars for the 2015-16 year.

More Rankings & Recognition News:

Pacific Lutheran's MediaLab Recognized for Latest Documentary Film about Higher Education
MediaLab, the applied research and media production program at Pacific Lutheran University, has received two recognitions for its most recent documentary film, "These Four Years," which focuses on the value of higher education and the college experience. Learn more.

Toward Student Success
Civic Engagement

Awards and Honors

President Lieberman Contributes to Chronicle of Higher Ed

Recently the Chronicle of Higher Education's "What I'm Reading" section featured University of La Verne President Devorah Lieberman who shared her thoughts about Fareed Zakaria's book "In Defense of a Liberal Education." Read more.
Boyer Recipient to Release New Book

Renowned author, educator, and NAC&U Boyer Award recipient Alexander (Sandy) Astin has written a new book, "Are You Smart Enough? How Colleges' Obsession with Smartness Shortchanges Students" which explores the many ways in which the obsession with "being smart" distorts the life of a typical college or university, and how this obsession leads to a higher education that shortchanges the majority of students, and by extension, our society's need for an educated population. 

The author calls on his colleagues in higher education to return the focus to the true mission of developing the potential of each student: However "smart" they are when they get to college, both the student and the college should be able to show what they learned while there.

The book, published by Stylus Publishing, will be released on April 30, 2016. Click here to enter the giveaway on
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