As NCC Prepares to Align with the Mason Vision, NCC Faculty Head to Portland for Innovative Curriculum Development

New Century College (NCC) is proud to announce that a team of its faculty members was selected to attend one of three Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) Summer Institutes on General Education and Assessment General Education. The team will be attending the Institute on Integrative Learning and the Departments at Portland State University in Portland, Oregon, July 10–14, 2013. 

Attending the institute are NCC faculty Al Fuertes, John O’Connor, Julie Owen, Lesley Smith, Kristin Scott, and Wendy Wagner. This team represents a variety of disciplines: Conflict Analysis, Cultural Studies, Digital Humanities, English, Education, and Leadership Studies. Additionally, the team members are active on multiple university task forces, including several related to civic engagement, social justice, and general education reform. Most team members are also involved on the national level with efforts to promote integrative studies, liberal education, the scholarship of teaching and learning, and portfolio-based assessment. 

The team’s application letter emphasized NCC’s continued commitment to innovation as highlighted in the Mason Vision: ‘We (at Mason) do not cling to old ways just because they have worked in the past. We honor time-tested academic principles while we strive to create new forms of education that serve our students better and new paths of research that can help us discover solutions to the world’s greatest challenges.’ NCC has long been a driver of this kind of innovation. It is in this spirit of ‘serving our students better’ that we seek to re-imagine our courses.”

Following the institute, the NCC team will lead a shared meaning-making process with other members of the New Century College faculty, as well as with university-level leaders such as the Associate Provost for Undergraduate Education and the Associate Provost for Faculty Development (both NCC faculty members). Agreed upon curricular changes will be enacted beginning in Fall 2014. The team will work closely with NCC’s assessment committee to monitor student learning outcomes and other institutional indicators of success, and to anchor new initiatives firmly in the College.