Provost's Messages


TO:         Academic Affairs Faculty and Staff

FROM:     James J. Winebrake, Ph.D., Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs 

RE:          Task Force on College Structure - Call for Nominations

DATE:      November 4, 2021

Call for Nominations Memo


This memo calls for nominations to serve on a task force to provide input on potential modifications to the college structure of the university. The task force will consider a college with a strategic focus on computing, technology, and/or engineering, as well as, exploring other potential opportunities. 


In a recent communication to the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) faculty and staff, I provided background and context related to the college structure at UNCW (here). In particular, I shared with CAS a charge that I provided to former Interim Dean Rich Ogle in January 2021 to evaluate the pros and cons of different organizational structures for CAS (here). That charge resulted in a report from the CAS Organizational Committee that was shared with me and the Chancellor (here). 

Since receiving that  report, a proposal was also delivered to my attention, submitted by chairs on behalf of faculty from three departments – Computer Science, Mathematics and Statistics, & Physics and Physical Oceanography – to establish a new College of Computing and Engineering at UNCW (here). The faculty in these departments voted to continue the conversation regarding establishing such a college. 

Overview of the Task Force Charge

Given this background, I am establishing an institutional task force to address the following questions relative to standing up a new college with a strategic focus on computing, technology, and/or engineering: 

  • Evaluating Opportunities
    • What opportunities would such a college create for student, faculty, and staff success (both within the new college and in other colleges)?
    • What opportunities would such a college bring to UNCW’s teaching, research, and service missions?
  • Designing Alternatives
    • What departments/schools and programs would be a part of this new college?
    • What additions or modifications to existing structures should be considered to maximize the effectiveness of the new college, while maintaining success across UNCW’s other colleges?
    • What challenges might emerge and what strategies might be used to overcome these challenges?
  • Resource Implications
    • What are the potential resource implications (revenues and costs) for the design alternatives?
  • Implementation Considerations
    • What are some of the critical components that will need to be addressed in standing up a new college (e.g., institutional documents, shared governance, etc.)?

Rationale for a Task Force

It is beyond doubt that computing, technology, and engineering have profoundly changed almost every aspect of society; and the impact of innovations in these areas continues to affect our lives daily. I believe UNCW can play an even more consequential role in these technological innovations. Further, UNCW is at an important time in its evolution – we are engaged in a strategic planning process and initiating a search for a new Chancellor. We should take this opportunity to consider how the college structure of our university supports the future of computing, technology, and engineering programs and fosters success across our entire portfolio. 

Nominations for Task Force Membership

The task force will be comprised of faculty, staff, and administrators from across the university. To begin identifying the membership of the task force, I invite members of the Academic Affairs faculty and staff to participate in a nomination process for service. Self-nominations can be submitted through the nomination e-form (here). The nomination process will close on Monday, November 17, 2021. 

The task force will be expected to engage with impacted stakeholders on campus to help inform their deliberations. 


Thank you in advance for your consideration to serve on this task force. I will keep the division updated as the membership of the take force is finalized and as the group progresses in their work.