The Graduate School Annual Report, 2007-2008

  Significant Activities in the Division during 2007-2008

Achievements

  • For the first time since 2003-04, we met (and exceeded) our FTE target, earning 968.63 with a target of 952.

  • For the first time since 2003-04, our grad student headcount went up. In fall 2007 it was 1686.

  • Our 2007-08 application numbers went up by 441 over 2006-07, from 2303 to 2744.

  • The GS spent $50,000 on marketing and recruitment: Online: Gradschools.com, Hobson's Gradview.com; Print: new engineering master's programs brochure, Women's Digest ad; Newspapers: Every college and university newspaper in Florida and southern Georgia (except UF); Magazines: UNF Journal, Hobson's International Guides for Europe, Asia, and South America; Grad School Fairs & Expos all around Florida and southern Georgia; UNF Grad School Expo; Letter Campaign to select UNF seniors; CD-ROM marketing piece.

  • We are developing the means to handle the admissions referral process electronically. The effect will be a shorter time between when we receive an application and when we notify the applicant of an admission decision.

  • This year we added the ability of an applicant to check his/her application status electronically and in real time, through a checklist accessible by applicants through the mywings portal. This same checklist is available to Graduate Program Directors, as well.

  • The amount of funding for stipends and scholarships went from $781,571 in 06-07 to $1,029,208 in 07-08. We distributed two LAC scholarships to each (eligible) college.

  • We distributed $45,000 in scholarship funds to recipients of the Auzenne Scholarship. The Auzenne is a state program focused on funding graduate students in particular disciplines when it is found that they are underrepresented in those disciplines.

  • The Graduate School participates in the Special Summer Graduate Program administered by the Division of Student Affairs and the PEACE Center.

  • We increased the funding for the Graduate Scholars Program from $5000 to $14,000. A Graduate Scholar is a graduate student who, upon winning an award through a competitive process, is given $500 to pursue a self-initiated/self-directed scholarly project.

  • The Grad School launched a year long set of Graduate Assistant educational programs called the "Graduate Educational Development Series." We offered nine different programs.

  • The Grad School developed a comprehensive guide to the thesis and dissertation process.

  • We enhanced communication with graduate students by developing a regular "Graduate Student Update."

  • We launched five new degree programs in 2007-08 — Doctor of Nursing Practice, Doctor of Physical Therapy, Masters of Science in Civil Engineering, Masters of Science in Electrical Engineering, and Masters of Science in Mechanical Engineering — and we are in discussions about a wide range of potential proposals for new degree programs, including some PhD programs.

  • UNF launched its first fully online degree program, a Masters of Education in Educational Leadership with a concentration in Instructional Technology.

  • Eight Graduate TLO awards, each of $5000, were made: Mina Baliamoune-Lutz/Developing new activities to enhance a Graduate Study Abroad (Brazil) Course; Michael Francis/Spanish Paleography and Florida History Online; Christopher Janson and Carolyn Stone/ Urban Education in America; Origins of Democratic Equality in Schools; Judy Rodriguez & Julia Watkins/A TLO in Belize CA for Graduate Nutrition Students; Sherry Shaw/Graduate Study Abroad and Mentored Interpretation Research; Jeff Steagall/ GlobalMBA Scholarships; William Voorhees Nonprofit Strategic Planning; Mei Zhao and D. Rob Haley/Health Care and Culture in China: The Qingdao Experience.

  • The GS and the Office of Institutional Effectiveness received, reviewed, and responded to 2006-07 GLO assessment data and improvement plans for all graduate programs; we will do the same for 2007-08 data and plans.

  • The GS participated in a range of Program Reviews and Re-accreditation pursuits.

  • SACS narratives for 3.6.1, 3.6.2, 3.6.3, and 3.6.4 were written and submitted to UNF's SACS liaison.

  • We hired and trained new and replacement staff members.

  • In 2007-08 we implemented a new process for reviewing and reappointing members of the graduate faculty. 24 graduate faculty members were reviewed and renewed as members of the graduate faculty.

  • We developed plans for creation, publication, and distribution of a UNF Graduate School report to the community.

  • We are now in data-collection mode about our alumni; in 2008-09, we expect to develop a survey instrument to send them.

Strengths 

  • We have a vibrant, professional, dedicated staff.

  • We are beginning our third year with a full time dean.

Weaknesses 

  • We are understaffed in secretarial and reception support.

Opportunities

  • The Graduate School is still in its infancy; there are plenty of opportunities and challenges left. These are identified in some measure in our Strategic Plan and the anticipated outcomes listed in the Grad School's website.

Threats – MINOR

  • Budgetary constraints limit us as they do every unit at UNF.

  • A reversal of growth to enrollment restriction may have unexpected consequences.

  • A move to the periphery of campus may have unexpected consequences.