Provost’s Updates and Memos

Provost Update - November, 2014

Sun, 11/23/2014

Good morning! Even after decades in academics, I still find it amazing how fast the end of each semester comes up on us. We’ll soon have Thanksgiving in our rear view mirror, and we will be organizing the last few lectures with hopefully grand effect! In the meantime, I want to update you on several activities around campus.

DEPARTMENT EVALUATIONS:  There has been much buzz ― as well there should be ― about the process of department...

Excellence in the Classroom III: Going Out Like a Lion

Sat, 11/01/2014

Dear UNT Faculty Member,

As many of you are aware, this year Academic Affairs is emphasizing a theme of “Excellence in the Classroom.” In August I wrote of the importance of getting a good start in the classroom, while in mid-September I indicated the importance of providing timely feedback to your students. I’m hopeful that you have been focusing on your own version of “excellence in the classroom”, and I am sure that our students appreciate it, as do I.

Now, we find...

URGENT: Departmental Evaluation and Chair Survey

Mon, 09/01/2014

Dear Deans and Chairs,

As some of you may have very recently heard, we have been tasked by our Board of Regents to compile data on our academic departments for a Board Retreat being held October 19th. The Board of Regents have specifically requested that all academic departments be assigned an overall ranking of “high”, “medium”, or ”low” based on effectiveness and productivity.  Importantly, there were no metrics...

Excellence in the Classroom I: The First and Last Day

Fri, 08/01/2014

Dear UNT Faculty Member,

This is the time of year, just before the start of the Fall semester, when many of you are preparing syllabi for your courses.  Some of you are dusting off a well proven product, some are doing a major rework, and some of you are preparing a syllabus for a course you are teaching for the very first time.  As you prepare each syllabus, please keep in mind trying to further enhance the student learning experience at every turn.  In this memo, I...

Summer Wrap-Up

Tue, 07/01/2014

Good morning! It’s scary how fast summer passes, isn’t it? As we in administration are offering orientations, and as students move in, I find myself saying to others “How WAS your summer?”, as if the tree leaves were about ready to start falling!  In fact, I hope the last gasp of your academic summer still has enjoyable and productive days in it. 

Now, what’s been going on around UNT?

Summer Activities:...

Spring has Sprung

Sat, 03/01/2014

Good morning! While we aren’t exactly in the “home stretch” for the Academic year, more and more of the spring semester is behind us (and winter, I hope!). Out of curiosity I read what I wrote in a Provost’s Update written at this point last fall, and it holds doubly true…..”It’s that time of year when the first doubts about finishing that “to do” list for the (academic year) start creeping into your mind (at least, into MY mind), to be temporarily pushed aside with thoughts of...

Update on the Library

Fri, 11/01/2013

This week, there have been pockets of discussion on campus about the necessity of beginning to directly fund staff benefit costs related to library personnel. And there now is a call to “Save the UNT libraries.” While I appreciate the important sentiment of this call, I need to emphasize that it is highly premature. While there is in fact an ongoing funding issue with how library staff benefits are funded, there have not yet been any specific discussions within the Division of Academic...

Budget, Enrollment, Raises - the Usual Suspects

Tue, 10/01/2013

Good afternoon! Hard to believe that we are about half way through this semester, isn’t it? It’s that time of year when the first doubts about finishing that “to do” list for the semester start creeping into your mind (at least, into MY mind), to be temporarily pushed aside with thoughts of “I can still get that done”. So, what are we trying to get done in Academic Affairs this semester?

THE BUDGET: We had a good outcome from the Legislature this year, as I’ve...

A New Semester, A Fresh Start!

Sun, 09/01/2013

Provost's Update: A New Semester, A Fresh Start!

Good morning! During this last week I’ve been caught in several “traffic jams” in various buildings across campus as students are changing classes. Isn’t that wonderful? Students everywhere who are talking, laughing, texting and studying (hopefully not in that order)! Their presence reminds me of one of the key reasons we are here to educate future generations. It doesn’t get any better than...

Mid‐Summer Update

Mon, 07/01/2013

Good morning!  It’s nearing the middle of the summer, with all the signs of summer on campus: cheerleader and band camps, quiet Fridays, broken water mains….  I know many faculty are either hunkered down in studios, library, laboratories, etc., or are off campus.  And, many of our staff are very busy taking advantage of the summer to prepare for the upcoming year (and for taking a well-deserved vacation).  Yet, I do want to update you on a few things that continue full...