Academic Affairs

Text: Provost's Perspectives, An Update from Provost Sheerer

February 10, 2017                                                            NEWSLETTER ARCHIVE

Dear Colleagues,

The semester is well on its way as signified by our full classes, Homecoming activities, faculty grant awards and Seahawk basketball! UNCW is definitely a happening place! 

Provost's Advisory Council

I’d like to remind everyone of the membership and purpose of the Provost’s Advisory Council. The Council is appointed through Faculty Senate and meets monthly to bring a variety of issues to the table for review and discussion. Faculty sign up for this experience, and the Provost then selects the members from the provided list in an attempt to reflect the different units on campus. The Provost works to bring more information on the topics to subsequent meetings and often invites special guests who are more expert on the topic. The members are:

  • James DeVita – Educational Leadership
  • Jorge Figueroa - SHAHS
  • Philip Gerard – Creative Writing
  • Nathan Grove – Chemistry and Biochemistry
  • Tammy Hunt - Management
  • Steve Meinhold – President, Faculty Senate
  • Anne Pemberton – Randall Library
  • Jeanne Persuit – Communication Studies
  • Scott Simmons – Anthropology

Recent discussions have included the lack of a specific excused absence policy, particularly for athletes; enrollment projections; scheduling of classrooms; indirect costs from grants; and supplemental pay.

Please feel free to contact a faculty member or me if you wish to have the group discuss a particular issue.

Process Improvement Initiative (PII)

As the University of North Carolina Wilmington continues to grow and change, one constant remains:  excellence.  To maintain that excellence we need to continually be identifying opportunities to examine processes that contribute to such achievement and adapt to the ever changing university landscape.  For example, if communication needs to be improved between units within the university, we want to bring the latest tools and techniques available to design better ways to communicate.  In doing so, it is important to simultaneously maintain flexibility to ensure new approaches can be incorporated as conditions change and to be ‘user friendly’ to those who have to work within the system.  These processes need to be efficient and effective.

The Process Improvement Initiative (PII) Task Force was formed with the purpose of improving and enhancing the various academic and business processes in the academic units and at the university level. Our goal is to make the processes efficient – minimizing the resources used; making the processes effective – producing the desired results; and facilitating
successful implementation; and adapting to changing needs.  In the coming weeks, Peter Nguyen, Provost Faculty Associate, from the Process Improvement Initiative (PII) Task Force will solicit ‘process improvement requests’ from the various units’ staff, chairs, directors, and deans.  Subsequently, the task force will prioritize and choose several issues to address.  We hope you will join us in this initiative as we continue to strive for excellence

Task Force members:

  • Sharon Boyd – Associate Vice Chancellor, Business Services
  • Kathy Browder – Associate Dean, College of Health and Human Services
  • Ann Glossl – Assistant Vice Chancellor, Office of Student Affairs
  • Sharon Lindgren – Executive Assistant, Academic Affairs
  • Tracy Meyer – Chair, Department of Marketing
  • Sharyne Miller – Chief Information Officer, ITS
  • Peter Nguyen – Professor, School of Social Work
  • Richard Ogle – Associate Dean, College of Arts & Sciences
  • Donyell Roseboro – Chair, Department of Education, Instruction Technology, Foundations and Secondary Education
  • Drew Rosen – Professor, Department of Information Systems and Operations Management
  • Marilyn Sheerer – Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs

Optimized Academic Scheduling Task Force

I have charged the Office of the Registrar with developing an optimized academic scheduling plan that will go into effect in fall 2018. The timeline for developing this plan is 12 months, since departmental schedule builders begin developing their fall schedules in early February 2018. This plan, while still in its infancy, will include changes to the scheduling of classrooms and potential changes to the policies surrounding academic scheduling. A task force has been mobilized to review every aspect of how academic space is used and to develop a plan to optimize the best use of that space. More details will emerge as the group moves forward. Jonathan Reece, University Registrar, plans to visit with each academic department in the fall to provide updates and get your input on departmental priorities. If at any time you have suggestions or comments, reach out to Jonathan or any other member of the task force. The development of this initiative is meant to be transparent and inclusive. 

The task force membership follows and I extend a special thank you to each of them for their involvement in this very important task. 

  • Kathy Browder – CHHS Rep
  • Diane Evans – WCE Rep
  • David Webster – CAS Rep
  • David Glew – CSB Rep
  • Lori Messinger – Community Engagement/Summer Rep
  • Stephen Meinhold – Faculty Senate Rep
  • Matthew TenHuisen – Faculty Senate Rep 
  • Colin Chapman – IT Support
  • Tina Strickland – EMS Manager
  • Woody Sutton – Space Planning
  • Jonathan Reece – Registrar
  • Freeman Whitney – Registrar

First-Generation College Students at UNCW

I call your attention to a report on first-generation college students here at UNCW completed by Dr. Eleni Pappamihiel when she served as a faculty fellow in the Provost’s office. Some of her conclusions can be found in the column on the right.

So, into spring we go! Enjoy the beautiful weather to which we are so accustomed.  I wish you the very best for this semester.


Marilyn Sheerer signature

Marilyn Sheerer
Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs