Information for Faculty

2015-20 Strategic Plan: Mission, Goals, and Objectives May 20, 2016

As a liberal arts college within a Catholic and Jesuit University, The College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Scranton offers a wide range of academic programs based upon an understanding of transformational education as a means to academic excellence, personal and spiritual fulfillment, and thoughtful service to the human community. The College is a community of learners dedicated to providing a liberal arts education for all of the University’s students, to the pursuit of wisdom and the dissemination of knowledge, and to addressing the critical problems of the world.

Key Commitments:

  • Liberal Arts College

  • Catholic and Jesuit Traditions

  • Transformational Education

  • Academic Excellence

  • Personal and Spiritual Fulfillment

  • Thoughtful Service

  • Community of Learners

  • Pursuit of Wisdom

  • Dissemination of Knowledge

  • Addressing the Critical Problems of the World

    Engaged:

I. We will form men and women for and with others, providing education shaped by the service of faith and the promotion of justice and emphasizing the development of adult faith.

A. We will prepare students to articulate the content of and reasons for their faith and make connections among faith, reason, and the demands of justice.

  1. We will continue to develop the Ignatian Values in Action (IVA) Lecture as an introduction for our students to the University’s Catholic and Jesuit mission and identity, and as an opportunity for our campus community to reflect on this identity.

  2. We will support faculty teaching the First-Year Seminar as a community of vocational discernment and in their efforts to introduce students to Ignatian pedagogy and the Jesuit tradition.

  3. We will continue to develop events and programs related to the IVA Lecture: e.g., Royal Read, Community Breakfast.

  4. We will expand opportunities for students to explore and articulate the connections among faith, reason, and the demands of justice in the context of their academic programs.

B. We will offer forums for debate and exploration of current issues important to the University, Church, and society.

  1. We will continue to create forms for discussion and reflection, on campus and in the larger community, related to the Ignatian Values in Action Lecture.

  2. We will support a variety of forums, including those sponsored by Education for Justice and Catholic Studies on current issues important to the University, Church, and society.

  3. We will collaborate with the Jesuit Center on forums related to faith and justice, particularly involving faculty who have participated in programs sponsored by the Jesuit Center: e.g., Ignatian Colleagues Program and mission trips.

II. We will challenge students and the University community to engage with the stark realities of the world.

A. We will offer community-based learning and service-learning curricular experiences that give students a way to learn about common challenges and problems facing humanity.

1. In collaboration with the Center for Service and Social Justice and other partners, we will systematically introduce students to service and engagement opportunities in the First-Year Seminar.

  1. We will increase the number of academically rigorous community-based and service-learning experiences each year.

  2. We will increase the number and variety of internships and other experiential learning opportunities as appropriate to students’ academic and career goals.

III. We will commit ourselves to remaining an affordable, accessible education that meets the needs and addresses the challenges of students from enrollment to graduation and beyond.

  1. We will implement bold strategies and initiatives developed through the University’s Comprehensive Resource Review (CRR), strategic enrollment planning and related activities to provide access to an affordable Scranton education with special emphasis for students in our local region.

    1. We will continue to develop programming for middle school and high school students in the region and utilize these programs more effectively in student recruitment.

    2. We will develop productive articulation agreements and partnerships with two-year schools in the region.

    3. We will increase participation in 5-year combined undergraduate/graduate programs.

    4. We will develop new combined and/or compressed programs with graduate programs at highly regarded and strategically selected universities.

    5. We will seek external funding to make programs accessible to underserved students with special emphasis on students in our local region.

  2. We will develop and implement a comprehensive and cohesive system to monitor and improve retention and graduation rates.

    1. We will analyze retention, graduation, dismissal, and probation rates over the past three years.

    2. We will develop methods of regularly tracking key factors in retention.

Integrated:

  1. We will improve processes and collaborations with various academic support groupsincluding SBCC, CTLE, and financial aidfor support and early intervention with at-risk students.

  2. We will continue to assess student learning and revise academic programs, where appropriate, with a focus on improving retention.

  3. We will consult with CTLE on Academic Development Program and consider revising and/or expanding it to meet current student needs.

I. We will facilitate the formation of students by developing a more holistic and cohesive academic and co-curricular learning experience that is marked by coordinated residential social, and athletic activities and by strong and integrated spiritual career, and other academic and student support services.

  1. We will strengthen and streamline academic advising and student support services, integrating access to these resources with career services and personal development offerings, to create a community of support that enables students’ individual success.

    1. We will implement the “Personal and Professional Development” component of CAS Passport Program.

    2. We will continue to support and develop department and program-based extra-curricular and co-curricular activities: e.g., Esprit, The University Players, The Aquinas, WRSU.

  2. We will support and invest in our students’ progressive participation in scholarly research conversations, from observers and apprentices to contributors and creators of knowledge.

    1. We will increase funding for student research and travel to conferences, including external funding.

    2. We will expand venues for promoting student research: e.g., websites, research prizes, local and regional presentations.

    3. We will expand formal opportunities for faculty student research mentorships.

Global:

II. We will use input from our faculty, our students, and those who support them to encourage the development of new mission-based and market sensitive programs and courses.

A. We will implement a more comprehensive approach to reviewing current programs by linking academic program reviews with financial and market analyses.

  1. We will review cost of education analysis annually for all programs.

  2. We will include review and goals for cost of education in Academic Program Reviews.

  3. We will develop a market analysis for potential new programs that facilitates good decisions about new programs and development of existing programs.

  4. We will assure that tenure-track faculty are prepared to teach a full range of courses, including introductory courses and laboratories in their disciplines.

I. We will present students with curricular opportunities and academic programs that lead them to the learning outcomes that form the vision of global learning at the University of Scranton.

A. We will establish a University committee, which includes faculty, staff and students, to develop and complement a global learning profile for students demonstrating the global character of their Jesuit education.

1. We will assure effective CAS representation on University committee.

B. We will enhance global engagement by developing interdisciplinary strategic partnerships with international universities and other international organizations.

  1. For each academic program, we will identify an effective exchange program and a grid for incorporating the program into the curriculum.

  2. We will develop more innovative models for incorporating international experiences into the curriculum, including opportunities attached to semester courses.

3. We will support and develop partnerships and programs linking global and local, particularly those engaging immigrant groups in Northeastern Pennsylvania.

II. We will be recognized for our internationally diverse body of students, faculty, and staff and will be characterized by a well-developed interdisciplinary, global awareness that is integral to our academic and social structure.

A. We will identify and implement those support systems deemed critical to the recruitment and retention of international students, faculty and staff, including an ESL program and social structures, programs and learning communities that support culturally diverse populations and facilitate cross cultural interactions.

  1. We will contribute to the establishment of an ESL program.

  2. We will continue to collaborate with Student Affairs to integrate academic courses and residential Living and Learning Communities, including LLCs facilitating cross-cultural interactions.

  3. We will explore the further development of academic programs that include language requirements.

  4. We will continue to develop language partner programs.