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Action Team Charge

Charge: The Center for Immersive Learning and Engaged Teaching will be a dynamic place, a centerpiece, where students, faculty, staff and alumni come together and where resources are available to discover and share best practices and support new ideas.

Rather than detailing the structure of the Center at this early point in its evolution, a steering group made up of 6-9 faculty and staff will begin the Center’s work by setting in motion specific pilot projects to demonstrate how the Center will contribute to the mission of the College in the future.

The College will support these projects and ask that each one produce evidence of progress in one year. In time, such work will be supported by funds for the Center that result from a fundraising campaign. The evidence of success these pilot projects produce will greatly increase our success at that important stage.

Each project should advance one of the Center’s new goals. Those goals are to:

  • Support undergraduate research, thesis writing, and fellowship proposals, where faculty from across the disciplines will mentor thesis, fellowship and/or summer research students in creative ways.
  • Develop the Office for Field Study to support faculty in all disciplines as they design and implement local and regional field trips.
  • Create in-residence programs for artists, scholars, social entrepreneurs, journalists, postdocs, filmmakers and others, building on the block and extending our reach to fully engage our alumni and parents, as well as others, who are experts in their fields and interested in sharing their experiences with students. Projects in this area could work with the Alumni Office to help faculty identify and build connections with alumni resources.
  • Study the Block Plan by delving deeper into its unique academic experience and sharing these findings internally and externally. To boost the pedagogical approach of the Block Plan, projects might feature visits from higher education scholars who want to study learning on the Block, a workshop on teaching summer and January courses for colleagues at other institutions, a workshop on best practices in teaching in the field, or preliminary steps toward a national conference on language immersion study or a journal on innovative pedagogical approaches,
To make progress on each goal, the steering group will call campus-wide for project proposals that address these goals. The team will develop criteria that uphold CC’s priorities to increase focus on engaged teaching and learning, emphasize our distinctive place in the world, and extend our reach and well-deserved reputation; and use those criteria to evaluate the proposals. Each proposal should describe how the project will meet the criteria and include a list of the participants, a timeline and a budget.

Each project should report concrete progress to the action team in one year. The group will report on progress at the end of the 2013-14 academic year and again when the one-year reports are received from the participating faculty. At that time, we will evaluate progress overall and determine the next year’s work.

When the Center is organized formally, it will include the offices of sustainability, community engagement, international, and academic technology as well as the Help Desk, the Crowne Center for Faculty Development and Colket Center for Academic Excellence. The steering group is encouraged to consult with leaders in these areas as the projects move forward. Proposals that involve collaboration with these offices should be encouraged.

Action team members

  • Anne Hyde, Chair
    [Director of the Crown Faculty Center]
  • Inger Bull
    Director of International Programs
  • Drew Cavin
    Director of Field Study
  • David Harker
    Director of the Collaborative for Community Engagement
  • Jared Richman
    Assistant Professor of English
  • Tomi-Ann Roberts
    Professor of Psychology
  • Carrie Ruiz
    Assistant Professor of Spanish
  • Tracy Santa
    Director of the Writing Center
  • Chad Schonewill 
    Help Desk Team Lead
  • Kris Stanec
    Lecturer in Education
  • Naomi Wood
    Assistant Professor of Spanish

Staffed by Caitlin Apigian, President’s Office