Faculty Senate approves changes

By Victoria Shea

Dec. 10th, 2018

At the final meeting of 2018, the Cleveland State University Faculty Senate approved to change the name of the Music Department to the School of Music.

University Curriculum Committee head Joan Niederriter, Ph.D., said the name change will “better reflect the scope of what the current Department of Music is producing.”

The School of Music currently offers 13 programs -- six undergraduate, three graduate and four post-graduate.

Despite the change, the music program will remain part of the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences and will have a director, rather than a chair person.

Other name changes approved include the Bachelor of Arts degree in Urban Studies to Bachelor of Arts in Urban and Regional Studies, and Studio Arts and Design to Visual Studies.

The senate also approved changes to the English minor and General Business major, Bachelor of Business Administration; and the creation of two minors: Graphic Design and Studio Art Minors.

The curriculum committee also presented future motions that will come for a vote at the first meeting in 2019 for changes in the Accounting major, American Studies minor, Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies, the Manufacturing Management Certificate and the Bachelor of Arts in Sociology.

During his report, Cleveland State President Harlan Sands said the Forward Together fund raised more than $160,000 during his investiture in October.

“Those funds,” Sands said, “will go toward what we always try to put our resources — to the students most in need.”

During October, Sands visited Mayfield, Parma and St. Edward high schools for recruiting purposes. He said students were excited that he took the time to come.

“The goal here is to really show that when the president goes out and talks to a bunch of students, or to a principal, or to folks at a local high school it really makes a difference, Sands said.”
In the spring semester, Sands said he hopes to visit three or more of the high schools in the Cleveland Metropolitan School District and hopes that faculty and students will join him.

“There is nothing better than having a faculty member or a student go talk to other students,” he said.
In concluding his report, Sands said the sudden resignation of Athletic Director Mike Thomas caught the administration off guard but that he has met with coaches and staff to help them through the transition process.

Jianping Zhu, Ph.D., provost and chief academic officer, shared academic highlights of the fall semester. First year retention rates indicate that 71.5 percent of students are returning after their first full year, and 45.3 percent of students are graduating within six years of starting at Cleveland State University.

Zhu said that these numbers may seem low, but they have gone up in the last several years.

“Eight, nine, 10 years back we’re talking about the upper ‘50s. The retention rate was 58, 59 percent,” Zhu said. “Now we’re over 70 percent. For the six year retention rate we were at 28 percent, now we’re at 45.3 percent. We have come a long way.”

Zhu said that in this semester, more than 94 percent of faculty who were teaching level 100 and 200 classes reported midterm grades, the highest percentage to date.

Zhu also noted some program enhancements with the addition of the Bachelor of Fine Arts in Film and Digital Media as well as the creation of doctoral programs in occupational therapy, nursing and engineering.

Samia Shaheen, the Student Government Association president summarized SGA activities during the fall semester and noted that SGA is still processing the survey results on textbook affordability.

Shaheen said she hopes she will have the results at the first meeting of 2019. She encouraged all faculty present to consider open access textbooks for the spring semester.

Shaheen said that SGA has also been working with Career Services to make students aware of the many resources it provides for the service fees they pay every semester. SGA has also encouraged students to complete course evaluations for this semester, and said the organization appreciates all the faculty who have also encouraged students to complete them.

Shaheen also said with finals coming up, faculty should encourage students to go to the library during finals week where SGA will be working from midnight to 2 a.m.


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