THE FIVE YEAR GOAL
Stony Brook will continue to improve undergraduate education and the recruitment and retention of students. In the last five years, the undergraduate program has been enhanced with initiatives ranging from increased mentoring, to special programs that engage undergraduates' interest, through programs that encourage pedagogical experimentation, to the establishment of several exciting interdisciplinary teaching and research units. To continue this development and accommodate the expanding undergraduate student body, the University will review what has been accomplished thus far to ensure that students' curricular needs are met, and continue carefully planned innovation.
Develop curriculum-based new-student seminars as an alternative to the current transition course (USB101). (1.2, Provost)
Beginning in fall 2004 all new freshmen will take SBU101 within their undergraduate college, and the curriculum has been redesigned to incorporate the colleges' academic themes throughout the course. Curriculum-based seminars will be offered in the colleges in the spring semester. For example, the College of Science and Society will offer a seminar focused on the influence of science on culture and thought and designed to improve students' written and oral communication skills.
Expand initiatives to develop mentoring relationships between faculty and students. Increase programs in academic departments that foster interactions among undergraduates, graduate students and faculty. (1.2, Provost)
Beginning in fall 2004, all freshmen will be members of undergraduate colleges that are designed to promote mentoring relationships. Each college will have a faculty director who will interact with the students and arrange the participation of other faculty. Students will also have increased contact with their SBU 101 instructors, who will serve as their academic advisors. The ongoing Mentor Program pairs about 100 faculty and staff with mentees, and students also develop mentoring relationships with faculty in their majors, through undergraduate research projects for example. The 2003-04 Year of Community theme was “Mentoring for Success” to promote mentoring relationships.
Academic Peer Advising Program fosters student relationships. In 2003-04, the College of Engineering and Applied Sciences successfully piloted a program providing tutoring by advanced undergraduates to students in key introductory mathematics and science courses, which may provide a model for other initiatives.
Create a new tradition by dedicating a day in April to the celebration of student achievements. (1.2, President)
An “Celebration of Undergraduate Research and Creativity” was established in 2001 as an annual April event. It features student poster presentations, displays, demonstrations, live performances, films, and art exhibits.
Track and increase the number of undergraduate students who are admitted to professional and graduate schools and/or who receive external scholarships and fellowships. Use these data in academic department reviews. (1.2, Provost)
A 2003 Wall Street Journal article (“Want to go to Harvard law?”, 9/26/03) reported results of an independent evaluation of the students' success in gaining admission to top graduate schools in medicine, law and business. Stony Brook ranked eighth nationally among all public colleges and universities, and 86 th among 3,000 public and private institutions. Maintaining that strength is an ongoing effort. In 2003 pre-professional advising services were reorganized into the Academic and Preprofessional Advising Center within Academic Advising to further strengthen these services and increase their visibility to students. More than 700 students now receive weekly email updates, and the prehealth advising website is consistently among the top Google search results for “prehealth advising” and “premedical.” The number of application letters written by the Committee on the Health Professions has increased 57% in the last five years.
Create a visible program of student surveys to identify academic and quality-of-life issues of concern to undergraduates. Use the results of these surveys to develop action plans and track the effectiveness of actions taken. (1.2, President, Provost, Vice President for Student Affairs)
Stony Brook conducts the Residence Hall Quality of Life Survey every semester, an annual alumni survey, the SUNY Student Opinion Survey every three years, and other surveys as needs arise. Recent examples include surveys to collect information on the student experience—conducted to support the Middle States Self Study—graduate student housing, the bookstore, academic integrity issues, and campus climate. Survey results are used in program planning. For example, the undergraduate college program responds to students' concerns about making academic and social connections on a large campus.
Implement the strategic plan for internationalization and evaluate its effectiveness. (1.3, Provost)
The Provost's International Council, convened to develop a plan for integrating and expanding international activities, recommended appointing an academic dean for international programs. This position was filled in fall 2003, and the former Study Abroad Office was reorganized into an office of International Academic Programs. Significant steps have already been taken to expand Stony Brook's presence in Asia through new exchange agreements with Indian, Chinese, and Japanese universities. In a novel two-plus-two program, Korean students will complete their first two years at Ajou University and their second two years at Stony Brook. Undergraduate Admissions has launched a recruitment initiative to enroll a growing number of freshmen and transfer students from China , beginning in fall 2004. Marine Sciences Professor Minghua Zhang traveled to China in 2003 to develop contacts and initiate contracts.
Increase the number of students who study abroad. Identify and reduce impediments to participation. (1.3, Provost)
The number of Stony Brook students studying abroad has increased slightly, and new programs have been added in Montpellier , France ; St. Petersburg , Russia ; Auckland , New Zealand , and Deakin University , Australia . The main impediment to student participation has been lack of information about study abroad opportunities. To address this problem, information and application forms are now provided on the Study Abroad website, and International Academic Programs has expanded its outreach activities by participating in general University information sessions and targeting smaller audiences such as the most relevant undergraduate classes.
Ensure that all administrative services, as well as relevant academic support services such as help with writing, are readily available to Health Sciences students. (1.5, Vice President, Health Sciences Center ; Provost)
The HSC Office of Student Services provides student administrative services and supports a student-life environment conducive to learning and student development. Specific responsibilities include admissions, recruitment, academic advising, student records, registration, financial aid, and general student services including student government and activities. Recent improvements include an online admissions applications and inquiry/recruitment system for the Schools of Nursing, Social Welfare and Health Technology and Management; implementation of the PeopleSoft system for all areas of student administration, and an improved website including self-service options. The School of Medicine has expanded academic advising, and the School of Dental Medicine has added programs to help students enter residency programs and professional practice. In response to student requests the University Counseling Center is opening a satellite office in the Health Sciences Center in summer 2004.
Develop a plan to establish mandatory health insurance for all undergraduates. (1.5, Vice President for Student Affairs)
A plan to establish mandatory health insurance for all undergraduates is under review by the campus administration.
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