SCSE in 2015
Prepared by the SCSE Executive Committee: Andrea Schokker (Chair, Civil Engineering), Erik Brown (Geology), Christopher Carroll (Electrical and Computer Engineering), Allan Chromy (Aerospace Studies), Alec Habig (Physics), Kathryn Lenz (Math), Richard Lindeke (Mechanical and Industrial Engineering), Keith Lodge (Chemical Engineering), Allen Mensinger (Biology), Elizabeth Minor (Chemistry, Fall 2008), Bilin Tsai (Chemistry, Spring 2009), Hudson Turner (Computer Science), and Aaron Stoko (Student Representative from Mechanical and Industrial Engineering)
The Swenson College of Science and Engineering has an established tradition of providing a quality environment to support the SCSE community (students, staff, and faculty) in leading efforts to benefit the world through science, math, engineering, and transdisciplinary work branching into these fields. Inherent in this environment is a climate of inclusion and diversity, support of teaching and research infrastructure, a commitment to continued support of established programs, and service to society. More detail is given below about how SCSE envisions continuing to improve on this tradition of excellence.
Undergraduate Program and Undergraduate ResearchSCSE will continue its nationally recognized leadership in providing close student-faculty interaction in teaching, advising, and undergraduate research opportunities. The strong undergraduate academic and research programs will be highlighted through increased publicity to current students, prospective students and to the public. SCSE provides a unique opportunity to redefine boundaries between science, math and engineering disciplines. Students and faculty will be encouraged to continue development of interdisciplinary efforts in these areas, as well as efforts crossing college boundaries.
As part of the continued development of SCSE programs, efforts will focus on evaluating and addressing the issues resulting from preparation of incoming students, increasing enrollment demands, and efforts to maximize resources for support of undergraduate research and education. Recruitment and retention of a diverse student body and faculty will continue to be an area of emphasis with specific recognition of the increased need for female and minority faculty role models in engineering, math and science disciplines that have been known for their very low percentages of female or minority faculty and students nationwide.
Graduate Program and Graduate Research
SCSE houses a number of established, successful graduate programs. These programs will continue to be supported and grown appropriately. A major focus will be aimed at increased efforts to recruit outstanding graduate students and researchers. SCSE is also positioned well to thrive in system-wide programs and in collaboration with campus affiliated Institutes.
SCSE will support immediate efforts aimed at the development of a professional Masterís degree program to meet the needs of practicing and future practicing engineers. Graduate programs in each of the areas of engineering will be added over the course of four years with full implementation prior to the next strategic planning phase. Transdisciplinary Masterís degree programs between engineering, math, the sciences, medicine and pharmacy will also be investigated. In line with the needs of these programs and other programs within SCSE that have large-scale experimentation needs, SCSE will actively pursue a plan for additional infrastructure to be used primarily for advanced research efforts. One option is to obtain facilities that can serve transdisciplinary research activities with shared resources including technicians and equipment.
Faculty Research and Outreach
Faculty will be encouraged to be at the leading edges of the state-of-the-art in their disciplines and to further their national and international presence through journal publications, use of updated web information, conference attendance, professional committee work and related activities. Resources for faculty research (access to graduate students through an established graduate program, infrastructure, information and scholarly electronic publications, and funding opportunities) vary by discipline. Each faculty member is encouraged to develop a high quality research program through appropriate means available to them (UROP, graduate programs, post-doctoral advisement, interdisciplinary research, etc). The expanding graduate programs will support faculty research development and collaborative research efforts. Outreach that utilizes a faculty and staff memberís professional expertise will also be encouraged, particularly if it involves communities in Northern Minnesota and our region.
SCSE Administrative Services
SCSE administrative and technical staff (at both the college and department levels) has significant additional time constraints due to the need to support the growing academic and research programs in SCSE. The workload of staff will be reviewed for potential reallocation with a focus on use of existing resources combined with additional demands as a result of new engineering programs and new graduate programs. Significant staff time for training and continuing education will be considered in this workload review. Dedicated computer technician support for SCSE will continue in line with needs.
In light of increasing demands for assessment of all programs (particularly the documentation requirements of ABET for the engineering and computer science programs), faculty and staff will be encouraged to establish and coordinate long-range plans for data collection, assessment, and continuous improvement utilizing existing tools (such as E-Portfolio) where applicable.