101 Kern Graduate Building
University Park, PA 16802
DATE: January 12, 2016
FROM: Mohamad A. Ansari
TO: Ann Taylor – email@example.com
Beth Seymour – firstname.lastname@example.org
Brent Yarnal – email@example.com
Martha Aynardi – firstname.lastname@example.org
Keith Shapiro – email@example.com
Andrew Ahr – firstname.lastname@example.org
Robert Kubat – email@example.com
Nick Rowland – firstname.lastname@example.org
Renata Engel – email@example.com
Shawn A. Lichvar – firstname.lastname@example.org
Careen Yarnal – email@example.com
Dan Hagen – firstname.lastname@example.org
SUBJECT: Special Senate Committee on Engaged Scholarship
The Engaged Scholarship Initiative (ESI) began in 2012 with a goal of elevating the role of engaged scholarship in undergraduate education, including providing more opportunities for students to have engaged scholarship experiences. The primary body charged by the University’s leadership with advancing the initiative is the Council on Engaged Scholarship (CoES). The CoES comprises 35 sitting members, including University-wide student, faculty, staff, and administrator representation. Five committees, consisting of 70 individuals, undertake the work of the Council.
Closely related to the work of the Council on Engaged Scholarship and Engaged Scholarship Initiative, the University Faculty Senate has taken leadership on offering out-of-class academic experiences to Penn State’s undergraduate students. In April 2014, the Senate passed an Advisory/Consultative Report––put forward by a partnership of nine standing committees––that gave the University guidance on how it should proceed with the Engaged Scholarship Initiative. Soon after taking office, President Barron endorsed this report.
At the same time, the President introduced his “Six Imperatives” to frame priorities for the Penn State community and to provide an important basis for the University’s next strategic plan. While each has a unique focus, these imperatives—Excellence; Student Engagement; Demographics and Diversity; Student Career Success and Economic Development; Accessibility; and Technology—are clearly intertwined, particularly with regard to their impact on student success. “Student Engagement,” defined by President Barron as “out-of-class activities that promote student success,” is a clear example of this interconnectedness.
Penn State defines engaged scholarship, a specific form of student engagement, as “out-of-class academic experiences that complement in-class learning.” Engaged scholarship experiences include, but are not limited to:
• Undergraduate research
• Study abroad, study away, and embedded travel courses Service-learning and community-based learning
• Capstone courses with an out-of-class component
• Clinical experiences
• Self-directed engaged scholarship
In follow up to the Informational Report that was presented by the Council on Engaged Scholarship at the Senate plenary meeting on December 8, 2015, The Special Senate Committee on Engaged Scholarship is appointed and is charged to:
• Establish a graduation requirement that all students complete an engaged scholarship activity during their baccalaureate degree program.
• Establish broad parameters of what an engaged scholarship experience is.
• Identify and establish reward and recognition strategies for faculty and staff involved in engaged scholarship.
• Prior to submission to the Senate Council, forward report for consideration and
approval to the University Faculty Senate Standing Committee on Curricular Affairs.
The Special Senate Committee on Engaged Scholarship will be expected to present its work as follows:
• Prepare a Legislative Report for the University Faculty Senate Plenary meeting of April 19, 2016.
Please indicate your willingness to serve on this Special Senate Committee by contacting Nickie Schlegel at email@example.com by Thursday, January 14, 2016. The charge meeting is scheduled for Thursday, January 14, 2016 at 11:00 a.m. in 101A Kern Building.
Thank you in advance for your participation in this important Special Senate Committee.
Mohamad A. Ansari, Chair
University Faculty Senate
CC: Eric J. Barron
Nicholas P. Jones