Part 3 - Comprehensive Standards
  

3.3.1.5  The institution identifies expected outcomes, assesses the extent to
which it achieves these outcomes, and provides evidence of
improvement based on analysis of the results in community/public service within its  mission, if appropriate,  (Institutional effectiveness - community/public service within its mission, if appropriate)

Compliance
Partial Compliance
Non-Compliance
Not Applicable

Narrative

The University of New Orleans is a student-centered, urban research institution that acts as a public resource for regional, state and international communities.  Community service is an integral part of campus life and an important means through which the University impacts its constituents.  The University identifies public service as central to its mission and vision

Mission

The University of New Orleans is a comprehensive urban research university committed to providing educational excellence to a diverse undergraduate and graduate student body.  The University is one of the region's foremost public resources, offering a variety of world-class, research-based programs, advancing shared knowledge and adding to the region's industry, culture and economy.  The University of New Orleans, as a global community asset, serves national and international students and enhances the quality of life in New Orleans, the state, the nation, and the world, by participating in a broad array of research, service learning, cultural and academic activities.

Vision

The University of New Orleans will be recognized as one of the preeminent urban research institutions in the nation, noted for its commitment to excellence in teaching and in student success; its location in a culturally vibrant city; its innovative and relevant undergraduate, graduate, professional and research programs; and its role as a primary engine of social, economic, intellectual and cultural development in the New Orleans region and beyond.

University Strategic Planning

Two committees composed of faculty, staff, student, and community representatives worked over 18 months to develop the UNO 2020 Strategic Plan.  The plan was published in November 2013 and is intended as a blueprint to guide University work from fiscal year 2014-15 through 2019-2020.  The foundation of the plan is the University mission and vision.  Included are six overarching goals, one of which emphasizes broadening the institution’s image as a premier university at the regional, national and international level while expanding our connection to the community.  The five strategies developed to achieve this are:

1.     Strengthen UNO’s commitment to civic engagement.

2.     Increase pride, engagement, and sense of community among UNO stakeholders.

3.     Promote UNO as a community asset.

4.     Build a culture of philanthropy throughout the UNO community.

5.     Advance UNO’s reputation through initiatives that promote the mission of UNO.

For each of the five strategies, action steps, responsible parties, plans, and assessment measures are identified in action tables [Page: 45] (SP, p 45).  In addition, units across campus have been directed to align their unit strategic plans and/or institutional effectiveness plans with the University Strategic Plan, per a memo from the Office of the President on November 13, 2013.   An April 2014 directive from the Office of the President included detailed instructions as well as templates for alignment planning, and budget planning to facilitate the alignment of institutional effective plans with the University Strategic Plan.  The purpose of this directive was to ensure that each unit on campus is appropriately aligned with the University Strategic Plan, that all units are moving in a cohesive manner toward common goals, and that assessment methods are identified to measure progress over the course of the plan.  Each unit has identified expected outcomes with appropriate assessment methods and targets, so that the University Strategic Plan may be assessed and benchmarked annually.  The overarching goal is to demonstrate that the university is effectively accomplishing its mission.

Unit level associations with the University Strategic Plan are tracked in WEAVE, the institution’s web-based outcomes assessment software package that serves as a university-wide tool and repository to develop and maintain continuous improvement processes.  Entering associations in WEAVE allows the university to effectively manage and track assessment.  The University Strategic Plan by Association Report demonstrates how the selected goal to “broaden the institution’s image as a premier university at the regional, national and international level while expanding our connection to the community” is supported by unit-level expected outcomes, sorted by entity.

External Stakeholder Involvement

Community stakeholders who represent the academy and its varied constituents provide input, feedback, and guidance to the University.  As a result, each of the external entities included in Table 1 represents a significant voice in the development and deployment of university strategy.

Table 1.  External Stakeholders for University Strategic Planning

Stakeholder Membership Description
University of Louisiana System Board of Supervisors

16-member Board of Supervisors:

15 appointed by the Governor for 6-year terms

1 student member selected by UL System SGA Presidents each May

Mission is to emphasize teaching, research, and community service to enhance the quality of life for the State’s citizens. Purpose is to provide high quality education that is cost efficient to both students and taxpayers, enabling students to reach their highest potential.
Louisiana Workforce Commission The Workforce Investment Council is comprised of 41 members from stakeholder groups, which are business and industry, organized labor, state and local government and community organizations. The members must be owners, chief executive officers (CEOs), chief operating officers (COOs) or other high-ranking officials. Focus on transforming the workforce system; strategic partners in education, economic development and communities throughout Louisiana; creating a cost-efficient, demand-driven system that drives employment, improves the business climate and provides excellent customer service.
Louisiana Economic Development Includes Board of Commerce and Industry, Board of International Commerce, Economic Development Cooperation, Innovation Council, Military Advisory Council

Responsible for strengthening the state's business environment and creating a more vibrant Louisiana economy.  Cultivate jobs and economic opportunity for the people of Louisiana.

President’s Council 15-member board, includes community leaders Advises and counsels the President on issues that affect the University.
President’s High School Advisory Committee

19 principals from local public and private high schools

7 UNO vice presidents and directors
Assists the University in identifying the needs of high school students and ways to best help them to reach their full potential.
Industry Advisory Boards and Councils Professional boards and councils relating to select disciplines, such as the Engineering Advisory Council and HRT Advisory Board  Provides counsel and support to specific academic programs; professional communication between industry and colleges/departments.

 

Community Service Expectations for Faculty

As is fitting in an institution for which public service is a core value in its mission, tenured and tenure-track University faculty are required to pursue service activities.  Service activities may include serving in roles such as department chairs or program coordinators, membership on campus-wide committees, participation in community outreach efforts, membership in professional organizations, or other relevant service that advances the University mission.  The centrality of community service in the faculty role is articulated under Duties and Responsibilities, C. Service [Page: 37] in the Employee Handbook.

Members of the academic staff are expected to devote themselves to the accomplishment of the purposes for which the university exists: instruction, research and public service.

Faculty Workload Policy

In addition to instructional duties, each faculty member is responsible for research and service.  Details related to service are provided in the UNO Faculty Workload Policy.  Credit hour equivalence of any service activity must be evaluated within each department on an annual basis and compared against the standards developed within that department and approved by the Dean and Provost.  Credit will only be awarded for activities that directly promote or advance the university. 

Annual Evaluations

Academic employees are evaluated annually in accordance with University of Louisiana System Bylaw Ch 3, Section X, D regarding faculty and staff evaluations as well as UNO’s Administrative Policy BA 45.2:  Performance Appraisal Requirements for Classified, Unclassified, and Academic Employees.  Each faculty member is evaluated annually in relation to an appropriate mix of teaching, research, and service.

Service Learning

The Office of Service Learning was established during the 2013-14 academic year to promote community engagement through service learning.  Service learning is a teaching and learning approach that integrates community service projects with academic studies to enrich learning, teach civic responsibility, and strengthen the communities in which we live and work. Through fieldwork, applied research, and other academic activities, students engage in project-based service initiatives with community partners.  Students, faculty, and partners work together to arrive at desired results, create innovative solutions to challenges, and achieve sustainable outcomes that benefit the partners as well as create a legacy of engagement with the communities served.  UNO has always engaged in service learning, but establishing the Office of Service Learning and a corresponding director position will allow the University to pursue these efforts in a more formalized, structured manner.

The Service Learning Council, composed of faculty and staff members, is dedicated to advancing service learning efforts on campus.  A sample of 2013-14 meeting minutes are presented.  The Council was integral in securing funding through a generous grant from the Joe W. and Dorothy Dorsett Brown Foundation.  The intent of the funded proposal is to implement an ongoing service learning program on our campus.  The University has committed its own funding to this initiative in order to assure that this essential support from the Brown Foundation is sustained by the academic programs of each college and is fully integrated into the University’s efforts to recruit and serve students as well as to engage with partners in greater New Orleans.  The program includes scholastic awards and course credit for students and encourages faculty through stipends, administrative assistance and training.

Institution Level Assessments

National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE)

The University administers the NSSE to all undergraduate students every other Spring semester and the data collected comprise our best evidence of student engagement.  The vast research on college student outcomes shows that student engagement, in its many forms, best distinguishes students who gain relatively more from their college experiences.  The instrument covers the broad range of effective student engagements, and institutional conditions that facilitate those.  For that reason, UNO uses NSSE data as a wide net from which to overview the range of outcomes, and identify a few areas for focus of responsive action. 

In Spring 2014, a subcommittee of the Institutional Effectiveness Committee was charged with reviewing data from the last three administrations of NSSE (2008, 2010, 2012) in order to identify strengths and challenges for the University.  This institution-wide level of analysis offers data upon which to direct our improvement efforts.  A thorough analysis of the data was conducted and the findings of the committee indicated two challenges related to community/public service:

1.  Frequency of participating in a community-based project (e.g., service learning) as part of a regular course.  Both Freshman and Seniors rated this significantly below all three comparison groups in 2012.  The data suggest a strong challenge. 

2.  Participation in community service or volunteer work.  The findings for both Freshman and Seniors trend up slightly, but both lag comparison groups.  UNO Freshman rated significantly below Carnegie and Peers.   UNO Seniors rated significantly below all three comparison groups.

Feedback from a faculty group interview indicated issues with student safety and liability.  Feedback from a staff group indicated that many students are interested in service learning and volunteer work, and would like more opportunities to participate.

Results from the Spring 2014 NSSE administration will be available in early Fall 2014, after which detailed information will be presented to the Institutional Effectiveness Committee.  The committee will then compose and submit formal recommendations to the Office of Academic Affairs.

Faculty Survey of Student Engagement (FSSE)

The University administered the FSSE for the first time in Spring 2014.  Institutions often use FSSE to corroborate NSSE results and gain a better understanding of student engagement on their campuses.  Results of this first administration are expected in early Fall 2014 and may be used to inform some of the following initiatives:

·       Accreditation self-studies

·       Assessment and improvement

·       Curricular reform

·       Faculty development programs

·       Faculty workshops and retreats

·       Grant proposals/applications and progress reports

·       Institutional research

·       Scholarship of teaching and learning initiatives

Special attention will be paid to results related to faculty encouragement and perceptions of emphasis on civic engagement.

Student Involvement and Leadership

In alliance with the University mission and strategic plan, and operating under the guidance of Student Affairs and Enrollment Management, the mission of the Office of Student Involvement and Leadership is to foster student success and lifelong learning by providing all students with meaningful opportunities for involvement in campus and community life. In addition to coordinating multiple leadership development initiatives, the office oversees approximately 140 student organizations.  The student organizations include student governance, Greek life, campus activities, and service initiatives.  Seven student organizations are identified as community-based. 

The Office of Student Involvement and Leadership is committed to instilling in students the importance of civic engagement by providing a list of non-profit organizations, volunteer opportunities, and through service opportunities coordinated by the University-sanctioned, student-led Service Coalition.  Service opportunities hosted by the Service Coalition include, but are not limited to:  monthly service days, alternative breaks, a campus recycling program, and Campus Beautification Day.  In 2013, the Office of Student Involvement and Leadership and Service Coalition volunteered with over 20 nonprofits in the city and volunteered 456.25 hours.

Other

Finally, a University-sponsored Research and Technology Park is adjacent to the main campus and houses technology, information systems and engineering corporations.  The Research and Technology Park is managed by the UNO Research and Technology Foundation.  Through public and private partnerships, the Foundation links the private sector to academia and various partners in the public sector.  Tenants have opportunities to engage in joint proposals, collaborative research projects with university researchers, and to supplement their workforce through internships for undergraduate and graduate students.

Supporting Documents

Document Description
Document IconBrown_Foundation_WebsiteJoe W. and Dorothy Dorsett Brown Foundation
Document IconBudget_Plan_TemplateBudget Planning Template
Document IconCommunity_Service_Organizations_WebsiteCommunity Based Student Organizations
Document IconFSSE_WebsiteFaculty Survey of Student Engagement website
Document IconIE_Strategic_Plan_InstructionsIE and Strategic Planning Instructions
Document IconIE_Strategic_Plan_TemplateIE and Strategic Planning Template
Document IconLA_Economic_Development_WebsiteLouisiana Economic Development website
Document IconLA_Workforce_Commision_WebsiteLouisiana Workforce Commission website
Document IconMemo_Office_of_the_President_20131113Memo from the Office of the President describing strategic plan and institutional plan alignment
Document IconMemo_Office_of_the_President_20140428Memo from the Office of the President with specific instructions regarding strategic plan and institutional plan alignment
Document IconNonprofit_Organization_ListNon-Profit Organization List
Document IconNSSE_WebsiteNational Survey of Student Engagement website
Document IconOffice_of_Service_Learning_WebsiteOffice of Service Learning Website
Document IconService_Learning_Council_MinutesSample of Service Learning Council Meeting Minutes
Document IconService_Learning_Council_WebsiteService Learning Council Website
Document IconSPA_Goal_6_Image_Community_201415University Strategic Plan By Association Report: Image and Community Goal
Document IconULS_Board_of_Supervisors_WebsiteUniversity of Louisiana System Board of Supervisors
Document IconULS_Bylaw_Chpt_3_X_Faculty_RankUniversity of Louisiana System Bylaw: Ch 3, Section X, D, Faculty Evaluation
Document IconUNO_2020_Strategic_Plan_Action_TablesUNO 2020 Strategic Plan Action Tables
Document IconUNO_AP_BA_452_Performance_AppraisalUNO Administrative Policy BA 45.2: Performance Appraisal Requirements for Classified, Unclassified, and Academic Employees
Document IconUNO_Employee_HandbookUNO Employee Handbook
Document IconUNO_Faculty_Workload_PolicyUNO Faculty Workload Policy
Document IconUNO_Mission_and_VisionUNO Mission and Vision
Document IconUNO_Strategic_Plan_2015-2020University of New Orleans Strategic Plan: UNO 2020
Document IconUNO_Student_Invol_Lead_WebUniversity of New Orleans Office of Student Involvement and Leadership Website
Document IconWEAVE_BrochureWEAVE brochure