The University Record, September 19, 1994

Goldenberg details LS&A accomplishments, points to challenges

By Mary Jo Frank

More than one-fifth of LS&A’s regular faculty of 936—204 in all—have been hired over the past five years, Dean Edie N. Goldenberg told the College’s faculty at their first meeting of the 1994–95 academic year.

“We have attracted and continue to attract extraordinarily strong faculty colleagues to Michigan,” noted Goldenberg.

Reflecting on the College’s achievements during the past five years, Goldenberg ticked off a long list in the areas of undergraduate education, building improvements, and other commitments to support scholarship.

In the area of undergraduate education, Goldenberg said, the College has:

  • Increased research opportunities for first- and second-year students through the Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program from 14 to 650.

  • Approved and implemented the race and ethnicity and quantitative reasoning requirements.

  • Increased the number of first-year seminars from 30 per year to 126 this year, most of which are fully enrolled and are taught by regular members of the faculty.

  • Established new concentrations in physics, biology, biochemistry and classical civilization, and built a major in psychology as a natural science that has grown to the third largest natural science concentration in the College.

  • Launched the first half-dozen Language Across the Curriculum courses and revised the curriculum in most of LS&A’s language departments.

  • Expanded support for instructional technology, helping 69 faculty members revise classes and build in sensible technology, about one-half of them in the humanities.

  • Revised and restructured the Inteflex Program for pre-medical education in collaboration with the Medical School.

  • Established two new learning communities, the 21st Century Program and the Women in Science and Engineering Program.

  • Revised introductory science courses in chemistry, mathematics, geology, and the physics labs that affect 30,000 student credit-hours per term.

  • Established a writing portfolio system for improved admissions, placement and advising.

  • Expanded the summer program with such creative new offerings as the Anthropology Field School.

  • Completed four successful theme semesters, the latest on the Theory and Practice of Evil.

  • Transformed the Natural Science auditorium from a “pedagogical nightmare to a highly sought-after teaching space,” and upgraded a large number of other classrooms and auditoria.

  • Established a Science Learning Center and several other heavily used instructional labs.

  • Received commitments for the Undergraduate Initiative from the provost for nearly $5 million in new base funding in addition to individual gifts, government, corporate and foundation support.

    Goldenberg said in the coming year the College will be concentrating on all of the areas where it already has achieved success and the following:

  • Evaluating and improving teaching assistant training.

  • Improving the climate of academic honesty and procedures to handle academic misconduct.

  • Rethinking LS&A’s systems of academic advising.

  • Improving and expanding writing experiences for students.

  • Strengthening Honors Program offerings.

    “I think that our faculty should feel proud of what you have accomplished and pleased by the momentum in the undergraduate area,” Goldenberg said.

    Citing the Central Campus construction, Goldenberg said, “We are remaking the Central Campus and it’s long overdue. We have to survive the noise and dust and disruption, but the payoff will be substantial and sweet. Better facilities will enable everything we do, especially our scholarship.”

    Goldenberg cited a number of commitments the College has made to support scholarship within its three divisions—the humanities, social sciences and natural sciences—and the College as a whole, including:

  • Increased the number of Collegiate Chairs by 50 percent and the number of University chairs.

  • Increased the number of endowed chairs.

  • Established faculty awards to support scholarly activity. Twelve have been awarded, with more to come.

  • Established the International Institute.

    In just a few weeks at the University’s mid-campaign festivities, Goldenberg said LS&A will announce that the College is well on its way to a $110 million goal, one of the most ambitious liberal arts fund-raising goals in the country.

    “We’ve raised more than $60 million plus $13 million in new bequest intentions,” she said.

    Goldenberg concluded her upbeat presentation:

    “It’s the beginning of a new year, and we have a chance to welcome a new set of minds into the world of higher education, to launch a new set of graduate students in their studies and their careers, and to discover—to develop new ways of looking at the world and new ideas and principles to guide our understanding, and I don’t think there is a better place to do any of these things than right here in Ann Arbor. I find the prospect exciting and want to wish all of you every success in the coming year.”