NIU faculty, staff and students may now submit nominations for membership on two task forces that will evaluate academic and administrative programs. Nominations will be taken from March 16 to April 10, and may be submitted online at www.niu.edu/program-prioritization, or printed and sent to the Office of the Provost, 215 Altgeld Hall.
The Academic Programs Task Force will consist of tenured faculty and instructors, with representatives from all seven colleges. The Administrative Programs Task Force will consist of staff, tenured faculty and instructors from all 10 university divisions. Each task force will have 20 or fewer members. Students will be invited to participate in a series of focus groups, the details of which will be announced at a later date.
While qualifications differ slightly between the two task forces, the following characteristics are sought for nominations to either group. Successful nominees will:
- Understand and embrace NIU’s mission as a student-centered research and teaching institution with a strong commitment to engagement with our region.
- Enjoy the respect of their peers and will have achieved a high level of credibility.
- Have participated in university-wide initiatives such as service on committees, task forces, shared governance bodies, etc.
- Have a reputation for getting things done and meeting commitments within a specific timeframe.
- Have the ability to consider the university’s long-term vision and participate as a representative of the entire university, not just his/her own department or unit (i.e., have a “trustee mentality”).
- Be committed to the principle of confidentiality in all task force work.
- Willingness to take the time needed to fully participate in all task force activities.
“Program prioritization is about matching resources with goals and vision,” explained Lisa Freeman, executive vice president and provost. “It is a painstaking process that requires individuals who can weigh many different variables while maintaining a focus on NIU’s mission and unique identity,” she added.
Among other challenges, Freeman says task force work will be very time-consuming, requiring at least 6-10 hours per week during the most intensive part of the process, from mid-October 2015 to mid-March 2016. The university will provide support to departments for this temporary loss of service and to individuals for additional work hours.
Questions about the nomination process may be directed to Carolinda Douglass, Coordinating Team facilitator, at [email protected].