To CFR Faculty:
I wish to thank each of you for helping us make substantial progress on our undergraduate curriculum transformation project this academic year. A quorum majority of the faculty voted to adopt the CTRANS proposal at our June 7, 2002 all-college faculty meeting. Our next step is to begin implementing the proposal. More information on this topic is provided later in this message.
The tremendous progress we have made as a faculty is especially gratifying to me and important to all of us. Reflect back to just one year ago and compare the state of our College. We have progressed from being polarized and uncooperative to conducting meetings as a College faculty where we have collegial discussions covering a variety of sensitive topics. At last Friday's faculty meeting, we adhered to a process and eventually made a really hard decision.
I am especially grateful to Professor Steve West for the outstanding leadership he provided and for the entire Elected Faculty Council for their contributions. They were instrumental in keeping us from a "free for all" several times over the past six months. Thanks also go to the College Planning Committee for their assistance early on in the curriculum revision process.
I also wish to thank all members of the CTRANS for the many hours they spent and for the excellent report they provided to us in mid-May. I wish to thank members of ALTTRANS for the many hours they spent in developing their alternative proposal. Some of their suggestions were adopted by CTRANS as reflected in the mid-May report. Other components of the ALTTRANS proposal will be further considered by our Curriculum Implementation Team as they work to craft a structure that will move the curriculum toward actualization. I will be working with Professor Linda Brubaker, Chair of the Implementation Team, and the Elected Faculty Council to develop the most productive approach to implementation and will keep all of the faculty informed as we move forward.
The 20-16 vote in favor of adopting the CTRANS proposal is not popular with all faculty. Yet the 25-1 quorum majority faculty vote concerning our willingness to make the CTRANS proposal work is most heartening. We did explore many options prior to taking the "final" curriculum vote. The votes leading up to the "final" vote indicated that the majority of our faculty were ready to choose rather than continue the discussion or remand the issue to another committee.
We had the majority of the faculty talking and we made a decision. I am confident that we, as a faculty, are capable and willing to make additional decisions to build toward a high quality undergraduate experience that all can be proud of. We have a chance to develop an undergraduate experience around our world class laboratory that spans issues from urban to wild lands. Our College will develop and deliver programs that provide a comprehensive, integrated educational experience to serve society generally and our respective natural resource professions in particular. Our new graduates will be able to contribute to discussions and solutions to the complex resource problems facing the region and the world. These will be exciting times to be teaching at CFR and our programs may emerge as a model for undergraduate education in natural resources.
B. Bruce Bare, Dean