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Academic Senate discusses nursing program, provost search at Jan. 15 meeting


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Academic Senate meets Jan. 15 in the College of Education and Human Services' French Auditorium. 

The Central Michigan University Academic Senate approved changes to multiple degree programs and the Graduation with Honors policy and received an update on the search for a new provost.

At its Jan. 15 meeting in French Auditorium, the Academic Senate approved changes to several programs, including advertising, journalism, photojournalism and nursing.

For the advertising, photojournalism and journalism: public relations concentration programs, students will now have the ability to choose from three different degree programs: a bachelor of arts, a bachelor of science and a bachelor of applied arts.

The Academic Senate approved motions to add the bachelor of applied arts degree to these three programs. 

According to CMU’s website, a BAA “is designed to prepare students for the creative work force.” 

A bachelor of science or a bachelor of arts requires coursework in humanities, natural sciences and social sciences beyond what is in the university program, whereas the bachelor of applied arts requires students to choose a major and at least one minor.

After a lot of discussion, the Academic Senate approved multiple changes to the nursing program. The online RN-BSN (Registered Nurse to Bachelor of Science in Nursing) program will have its first class of students in the Fall 2019 semester. 

Changes include eliminating the English 303WI technical writing course from the program and converting a nursing course to a writing intensive to meet degree requirements.

Senator Tracy Davis, of English language and literature, questioned the elimination of the technical writing course. 

Kechinyere Iheduru-Anderson, director of the RN-BSN program, explained that the students in the program will be practicing registered nurses who already have technical writing experience. Also, most of the nursing courses will have technical writing components.

Other changes to the nursing program include eliminating the requirement for a letter of recommendation when applying and changing retention requirements from a 3.0 GPA to a C or higher in all nursing courses. Senator Tom Masterson, dean of the College of Health Professions, said these changes will make the program more appealing to applicants.

President Robert Davies updated senators on the search for a new executive vice president and provost.

Provost Michael Gealt announced in December his plans to step down.

Davies said his goal is to have final candidates on campus in mid-April. Davies has appointed a 16-member search committee and chose the search firm Witt/Kieffer to assist.

“When I talk to the candidates, I will be looking at how they combine teaching and research, undergraduate and graduate, and very importantly the humanities and STEM,” Davies said.

Senators approved a motion to change the Graduation with Honors policy and procedure. Currently, students must file paperwork to request the honors classification be included on their diploma. The motion suggested removing that step because the Registrar’s Office can automatically add the classification.

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