Comments and Questions from Listening Session with Bruce
Chemistry Department Comments
Began with slide presentation prepared by the department that illustrates some of the comments below.
Majors in Chemistry have doubled since 1985
Recognize the need to generate external dollars to support growth
1/5 of students do summer research full time, supported by grants. 25% work 2-3 summers.
We need to get the word out on the experience our students get. We recognize that students are our product.
Involving students in presenting accomplishments to the legislature is important – we need to invite legislators here.
The number of students has increased, and the welcoming and patient staff are part of the reason.
Early involvement with the foundation and a biotech advisory board was very useful for shaping the curriculum and producing research & internship stipends. It was dependent on individual faculty effort to keep it going. We need to reactivate it, and could use an endowed effort to sustain it such as the UW with Gates Foundation.
What do you think about the idea of Centers of Excellence, like those in Wisconsin?
I hear about growing resources by growing enrollment. Because of this, feel that Chemistry department support is being diluted.
I hope we look at returns on investment. The return on the Murdock grant was very good. The department is poised and ready to continue growth.
Our biochemistry classes are too large (due to success!).
How can we account for the time we spend in research with students and other efforts in a compelling way so other units understand. We need to fill two positions.
We need the new Provost to communicate about the relative priorities across the institution.
Given how long it takes to get in the queue for and complete capital projects, what are the prospects for new, more accommodating buildings? By the time we get them built, they are already maxed out.
We hear you talking about data-driven strategic decision making. As chair, I welcome that. It will make my job easier.
We can provide our departmental goals for your use with donors and legislators.