Like most Americans, I was both saddened and disturbed by the recent tragedy in Charlottesville. While these events left me feeling aghast and somewhat speechless, I nonetheless felt compelled to write in solidarity with college, university presidents and leaders nationwide, and especially with President Teresa Sullivan and our nearby neighbors at the University of Virginia and greater Charlottesville. The violence and atrocities, including the death of an innocent bystander, are reprehensible. There is no place for hatred and violence of any kind on our campuses or in our communities and, in fact, these actions are contrary to the core values we value and uphold as both educators and as citizens.
Teamwork, professional development, assessment. What links these concepts? The APUS assessment team recently attended the Association for the Assessment of Learning in Higher Education (AALHE) Annual Conference in Louisville, Kentucky. Participating in this event as a group allowed us to build and enhance team connections and share daily feedback on new ideas, alternate processes and innovative methods and how we might apply those learnings to our ongoing initiatives at APUS. With our assessment initiatives in mind (e.g., rubric integration into our classrooms using iRubric, rebuilding and reshaping the university assessment committee, continuous improvement through triennial program reviews, and several others) we went forth to attend the daily sessions.
Editor’s Note: From time to time in this space, we want to share stories from our alumni as they relay their experiences with APUS and how they have impacted their careers and personal lives. This week, we feature the story of AMU Emergency and Disaster Management student and military spouse Melanie Binversie. We encourage you to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to share your own APUS journey with us as well.
New places, faces, streets, neighbors, houses, new schools for your kids and for you. I like to think I am pretty unique, but the truth is, I am a lot like every other military spouse. We have moved seven times in eight years. The challenges that we face as a military family extend further than just having to get new curtains each time you move and having a stack of them taller in your linen closet, none of which work for your current house!
The American Council of Education (ACE) Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C., earlier this week brought together presidents, provosts, and university and higher education leaders from around the world. On opening day, the attending presidents discussed such issues as academic freedom, alongside student freedom of speech, in a session titled “Navigating the tension between freedom of expression and campus inclusion.”
All new university presidents are required to attend the Department of Education’s (ED) Fundamentals of Federal Student Aid (FSA) Administration course. It is comprised of a mandatory online pre-requisite course, followed by a five-day, in-person class conducted onsite at an ED location. These sessions are conducted regularly in various regions nationwide; and I completed my training last month in Seattle. The online component was rigorous, informative, and required a pass rate of 80% to ensure eligibility for the in-person segment. This portion was equally instructive and included sessions exclusively for presidents and CEOs, alongside the regular training provided to directors of financial aid.
Does higher education prepare students for the workforce? Should it? If so, how? These questions, resounding clearly across higher ed, government, and employers over the past few years, have existed for as long as I can remember. On a decision tree, they would branch off from the trunk of the question, how is the quality of higher education defined?