Message from Chancellor Ford: An Optimistic Future
"The society that builds a new university assesses the future optimistically. It bets that the future will be better than the past and that the university will help make it better."
-- Dr. Irvin Wyllie, First Chancellor
Colleagues, Alumni, and Friends of the University:
Welcome to the 45th academic year of high quality public education in southeastern Wisconsin at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside. Upon opening this campus, our first chancellor, Dr. Irvin Wyllie stated, "The society that builds a new university assesses the future optimistically. It bets that the future will be better than the past and that the universitywill help make it better."
I am very proud of the tremendous advancements under way at the university. Last week during my Convocation address, I shared many recent accomplishments. During the presentation, two recipients of the Stella C. Gray Teaching Excellence Award and eight recipients of distinguished faculty and staff awards were recognized for their achievements. All of these are strong evidence that the current campus community remains truly optimistic about our mission to advance knowledge and learning in our region.
It was a great pleasure to reconnect with our first graduate, George Becker ('70), and his granddaughter Charley Becker who begins classes today at UW-Parkside. Yes, we are a vital part of the fabric of the communities we serve. Our steadfast commitment to education is grounded in our mission and defined by our four hallmarks. Our mission and hallmarks are the fundamental beliefs and attributes of our university. They are enduring and resonate with our past, inform our present, and lead us into the future.
As we move into this anniversary year, we find a society accelerating on a global scale. Our university must continue to adapt and grow in order to sustain the success of our learning community, our graduates, and the region we serve. The UW-Parkside Pillars of Excellence that I discussed at Convocation represent a set of standards shaped and defined by our collective contributions. The Pillars address the opportunities to discover flexibilities and new pathways in learning, as well as build a working culture around high collaboration to share ideas and resources. The UW-Parkside Pillars of Excellence enable us to solidify a culture of continuous improvement, today.
It is a privilege to serve in higher education. I am proud to serve this diverse and vibrant university and look forward to a wonderful anniversary year.
UW-Parkside Pillars of Excellence in 2013-2014:
Academic Excellence and Quality: This defines our main reason for being a university and demonstrates our focus on delivering our educational mission. We support this pillar through:
Student Success: This pillar embodies our most important stakeholder, our students and soon to be graduates. Student Success is supported through:
- Implementation of our academic plan
- Educational collaborations across campus and with partner institutions
- Alignment of academic programs with regional needs
- Accreditation of academic programs
- Quality of our graduates
- Enrollment growth
- Implementation of our Strategic Enrollment Management plan
- Increased participation in high-impact learning practices
- Successful outcomes from Graduate Parkside, the PACE program, the Provost's Retention Task Force and Faculty Learning Community for Student Retention
Partnerships and Pathways:This pillar illuminates the strength of our commitment to the communities we serve. We are a stronger university as a result of our partnerships. Our goal is to continually build high-quality and sustainable partnerships that contribute to the excellent educational experiences of our students.
Stewardship and Operational Excellence:At their essence, universities are people pursuing a common vision and mission. Our shared focus on stewardship and operational excellence is a way to rally around this sense of connection and includes;
Telling our Story: This pillar represents not only the great stories we have to tell, but the importance of sharing those stories with a broader community and with one another. In the age of rapid and expansive communication, we must engage in rich and compelling storytelling with our stakeholders. They include;
- Our campus working within strategic and measurable goals
- Owning our roles in well-designed plans, policies and practices
- Owning our roles in continuous improvement
- A shared commitment to use our human, financial, physical, and capital resources to full capacity in alignment with our mission
- Launch of the new UWP.edu (January 2014)
- Implementation of our new content management system across campus
- Review and adoption of new brand and communications standards and policies to facilitate efficient business and community communications