Provost’s Updates and Memos

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...

More Commentary About Hiring Lecturers

Wed, 05/01/2013

Good morning!  I recognize that this is a second Provost’s Update fast on the heels of an Update sent several days ago and, unusually, this one is a single-topic Update.  However, I wanted to provide a little more explanation about our project for hiring lecturers next year.  So….

HIRING LECTURERS NEXT YEAR – NOT A CHANGE IN UNT RESEARCH FOCUS! In my last Provost’s Update, I spoke about how hiring Lecturers, Senior Lecturers or...

First MOOCs, now MOOAs!

Mon, 04/01/2013

Good afternoon! Spring Break has now rapidly receded in the rear view mirror, and many around the campus are realizing that there is still a lot to fit in before the end of the semester. Additionally, we have many wonderful celebrations, award ceremonies, and other recognitions that pay tribute to the excellence of our students, faculty and staff.  As a result, this time of year also is a pretty “intense” one.  In fact, I’m reminded of T.S. Eliot’s poem “The Waste Land”, that...

Enrollments, Budget, Research and the March of the MOOCs

Fri, 02/01/2013

Hopefully you are all well settled into the Spring 2013 semester at this point in February. I’vebeen reflecting upon what’s going on these days that might interest you……

ENROLLMENT UPDATE. This semester we are serving a slightly larger student body (up 0.6% compared to the same time last year) who are taking even more courses (SCH up 1.2% compared to the same time last year). Remember, we are funded by the state on the basis of SCH, not headcount, so this is better...

How the Academic Year is Shaping Up

Mon, 10/01/2012

I’ve been meaning to sit down to write about the “new” semester, but here it is well into October already, so I can only talk about the 2012/13 academic year as still being relatively new and full of promise. And, as in the last few years, it is turning out to be a jam-packed year with manifold opportunities to move forward, but also places to stumble if we aren’t careful. So, here’s what’s on my mind these days…….

HIRING FREEZE. The hiring freeze continues, although...

Welcome to the 2012/13 Academic Year!

Wed, 08/01/2012

A NEW ACADEMIC YEAR! I sometimes feel that I’ve lived my professional life in an intertidal zone – the tide flows out (summer), but always flows back in again (the start of the new academic year). And this year’s incoming tide carries much with it: a record crop of ever more talented freshmen (more on that below), new faculty and staff hires of stunning quality; wonderful energy and enthusiasm at every turn on the campus. It’s a great time to be at UNT.

But, we have...

Mid-Summer Activities

Sun, 07/01/2012

July is, for many faculty, time for travel, scholarship, renewal, immersion in summer school, etc. Staff are busy preparing for the next academic year, and taking well-deserved vacation time, as well. However, to those around to read this email, I did want to share a few announcements.

ADMINISTRATIVE APPOINTMENTS: UNT has recently made two superb administrative hires into key academic affairs positions. Yolanda Flores Niemann has joined us from Utah...