Summary of higher education now and future priorities and issues

You know how much I love to read through a summary before deciding to read the full report? Well, if not, I do. Here is one of the best of those.

Please read the highlighted portion.

I believe this is a concise state of affairs in higher education document…one of the most direct and accurate summaries of where we are and what we need to keep in mind in moving forward. My read on this:

STEM/Technology in pre-college years.

Liberal Education core.


Broad, rich, varied and exploratory.

Education beyond high school and a chance for all to go to college.

Engaging families.

Let’s keep the focus

divided we fail report

MAP update DRAFT April 2015

MAP Becoming financially sustainable

Master Academic Plan goal area outcomes
Summary report – highlights
Fall 2013 – April 2015

Becoming financially sustainable

1. All liberal education requirements are available online for distance students, although we could use additional sections

2. Off campus blended/hybrid cohort enrollments at distant sites (headcount/credits)
a. 2012-13: 151 and 1338 credits
b. 2013-14: 227 and 2227 credits
c. 2014-15: 261 and 2552 credits
d. New off campus cohorts

i. Nursing (3)
ii. Biology
iii. Business
iv. SOWK SWIM and LADC certificate
v. Mass Comm, Psychology, and Mathematics in planning
vi. Creation of BSU center Twin Cities in progress

3. Overall enrollment headcount:
a. 2012-2013: +1%
b. 2013-14: +2.5% (highest in history)
c. 2014-15: -.8% (third highest in history and down less than any other MnSCU university)
d. Fall 2015: projected +2%. (only university in MnSCU with increasing enrollment)

4. New programs
a. Leadership Development minor
b. Project Management major
c. Wildlife Management major
d. Engineering Technology (name change/program revamp)
e. Jazz Emphasis
f. International Studies minor
g. MBA online
h. Accounting online
i. Social Work Integrated blended degree program
j. Chemical Dependency minor
k. SOWK LADC certificate blended delivery
l. Post-Bac FasTrac teacher licensure online/blended

5. Percentage of university funds allocated to Academic Affairs increased by 3%; reduced student FTE/faculty FTE ratio from 25:1 to 23:1

Becoming distinctively BSU:

1. Intern Bemidji program renewed with over 75 positions available each year
2. 12 international internships available to BSU students annually
3. 12 teaching slots available for new BSU graduates at Ameri-Can International Academy; expanding annually
4. 50 affordable (less than $1K above cost of staying at BSU) semester abroad slots available each semester
5. Growth in summer credit and non-credit offerings each of the last two years to move BSU to a ‘summer destination’

Becoming internationally competitive: 12 new international partnerships

1. Visiting professor program
a. 2012-13: International visiting professors at BSU: 1 ($32K cost to BSU)
b. 2013-14: 2 ($55K cost to BSU) Program revamped
c. 2014-15: 6 ($52K gross revenue to BSU)
d. 2015:16: 10 expected ($90K gross revenue to BSU)

2. BSU students working abroad
a. 2012-13: 0 BSU students working abroad
b. 2013-14: 6
c. 2014-15: 15 with 2 more going in summer 2015
d. 2015-16: >25 expected to work abroad

3. BSU students education abroad (credit based; not including work abroad)
a. 2011-12: 43
b. 2012-13: 55
c. 2013-14: 90
d. 2014-15: >100 estimated by end of summer 15

4. International student applications for admission
a. 2012-13: 65 international applicants from 16 countries
b. 2013-14: 70 international applicants from 18 countries
c. 2014-15: 176 international applicants from 48 countries; headed to 200+ (highest all time was 2005-06: 175)

5. New partnership with Ameri-Can International Academy in Weifang provides 12 teaching slots for new BSU graduates and is expanding annually

6. BSU faculty abroad
a. 2012-13: 3
b. 2013-14: 5
c. 2014-15: 8

Designing organizational support for MAP goal areas

1. New regional partnerships
a. Watermark Regional Art Center
b. Bemidji Community Theater on BSU campus
c. Bemidji Regional Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center
d. Bemidji High School Academy partnership with NTC
e. Mechatronics programming with NTC

2. NTC organizational changes and accreditation process underway

3. Tribal Colleges/BSU Consortium with high definition audio/video connected classrooms in place and program planning in progress

4. Global Learning Center classroom and English Language Center partnership with Winona State in place

5. Expanded cabinet and academic affairs council membership; posting of meeting notes; blog and email updates; open forums; reorganization of administrative structure planning

BSU 2020

1. Free first year tuition/engagement program
2. Flattening and distributing administrative leadership
3. Affordable semester away or work abroad for all students
4. Passport program/global certificate for all students
5. Expansion of BSU Twin Cities and distance education for adults

Post China trip things to do and questions to address

To do and follow up for each site visited this trip:

1. Shanghai: Zizhu Park will have an AASCU office there that we can use for anything we wish to schedule. Cost per year will be $3K-$5K. We will need to sign on with AASCU when the office is open later in April if we wish to do so. I think its a good idea.

2. Hunan Polytechnical College: They plan to send visiting professors to BSU who will have time at NTC each day while here. Mark and Bob will follow up with a plan for this. We will need to bring them to BSU on our J1 visa. The program plan and costs need to be set as soon as possible. Mark will go back to deliver a short course on site, but not sure of the date/plan for that. We need to follow up with the Polytech to set that date and what the course will be.

3. Jinhua U: Carolyn Townsend will go to Jinhua in mid-May for 4-5 days. She will spend time on campus and in the city to see what we can do with them in the future for nursing programming. She will go through our office for travel arrangements to and from China and CIBT for inside China arrangements. Jinhua is interested in joint nursing program and non-credit certificate programs for their students.

4. Wuhan U: They plan to send two more visiting professors to BSU next year and 5-6 students.

5. Guanggang U: We need to sign the exchange agreement with them. They may plan to send 1-2 visiting professors to BSU next year.

6. NIT High School: Amna may attend their college fair next September to recruit.

7. Jilin Teachers College: They are interested in joint programs. We need to start with an exchange agreement and go from there.

8. Jiatong U and Haibin College: They want to set up course equivalencies for BUAD…I have their course listings to pass along to Sanjeev to see if we can establish equivalencies for them. They need to sign an exchange agreement with us. They will send 1-2 visiting professors to BSU next year. They want us to visit Haibin College next trip.

9. EXPO: We need to ship over more giveaways for the booth next time. We need to send the artist copy of our viewbook to them so that CIBT can translate it into Chinese and print it locally for the booth. We should plan a pre-Expo hosting at a local hotel next fall and provide provisional admission to students recruited to the pre-Expo event.

10. We need a one week program for Chinese university leaders to come to BSU to learn about US public and higher education.

Questions we need to answer and to do list in general:

1. Summer camp for high school students. Angie is getting the information for that.

2. Contract for Shuai.

3. Revise agent agreement for CIBT.

4. We need to look at how we can provide conditional admission on site in Beijing pre-Expo.

5. Get original viewbook file to Lisa (I think it is Lisa?) so that she can get it translated and printed in China.

6. Follow up with Bemidji Superintendent about bringing Chinese students to Bemidji High School as tuition paying students. Lisa said there it makes sense to create a pipeline, bringing Chinese high school students here for their last two years where they take AP courses and earn college credit then come into BSU after they graduate from the high school. 10-15 students a year coming here could easily be worked out.

7. Need to set up the BSU/NTC visiting professor program and get off campus housing arranged for visiting professors for both the North Star program and BSU/NTC program.

8. Need to set up a one week program for Chinese university leaders to come to BSU and learn about US public and higher education. Several universities are interested in sending professors and administrators here for that.

Last day in Beijing

Chris Brown at the BSU booth in the Expo…Beijing.

bsu booth

A bit dark, but this is the crowded isle near the booth. There were 32 aisles of universities, colleges, and high school booths…each about 100 meters long.

expo isle

Scooters on the way to the scrap heap in Beijing…I just couldn’t resist a picture of the stack doing down a major freeway.

scooter truck

Today was the last day in Beijing. The entire day was spent at the expo. Thousands of students and parents visiting University and high school booths from all over the planet. It is hard to describe the size and crowd.

The Bemidji State both looked great. We had a large banner in the background showing the campus on the lake. We had the tablecloth with the Bemidji State name and logo. The handout was one we typically give at recruiting fares but translated into Chinese. Chris Brown used a prezi from Amna to present BSU. He also had a Bluetooth speaker hooked up to some upbeat music. There were always people stopping and talking and asking for more information.

Some individuals from our partner universities also stopped by to chat. I visited several other university booths to talk with their international folks about how they are recruiting here and to basically steal some ideas. Virginia Tech works with an agency in Beijing that recruits for them. Their international team arrives here two days before the expo. They host students and parents at receptions in the local hotel. They process their initial application materials and enter them into their system at those receptions giving the student conditional admittance. Every booth I visited does something similar and uses agents or an agency in Beijing.

Toby Chu was here and spoke with me about the need for US teachers in international schools worldwide. Within their network he said they need about 200 a year. And that is just within CIBT’s network. We talked about him putting together something to distribute to the other system universities.

The Northeastern State booth was next to ours. It was fun to visit with old friends while working our booth. They are doing some interesting things now that has led to a large increase in the number of international students coming to their campus. We are going to borrow a few of those ideas.

Sunday morning I get on the plane and fly back to Washington DC for the Minnesota delegation to the middle eastern embassy events. 14 hours to Detroit and then another couple of hours to Washington.

I feel like I could sleep for a week.

Day 5: Beijing

Today began with breakfast at the hotel with Mark and Bob. We caught up on our thinking from the week and went through the plans for the day. Mark and Bob were picked up by Gary from CIBT and taken to the Forbidden City and Tianamen and the silk market.

Shuai and David picked me up and we were off to visit that NIT Education Group’s International School. The school is a K-12 school that runs an Australian, British, and U.S. curriculum after elementary levels are completed. Parents choose which curriculum their child will move into in high school. The place is incredible. There are 3,200 students, going to 5,000. They have been in operation for 10 years. The focus is on college preparation and high achievement. The Chinese students there score in the 6.5 range on the IELTS and are admitted to top universities all over the world.

The kindergarten ratio is 5 students in a class…and each class has a Chinese teacher, a Western teacher, and an assistant teacher. The ratios after kindergarten are still in the range of 10/1 all the way through. The school has an 18 hole golf course and all students take golf. All students take art and music. All students get physical education daily. The school offers fencing if you can believe it…along with a pool, recreation center, fantastic library, and residential halls for over 90% of the students who are in residence. We talked about BSU and some of our programs…and I stressed high academic expectations we hold across all programs. I also talked with them about some distinctive features of BSU, including the setting and recreational opportunities, small town environment, attention to student success, international efforts, etc. They are interested, want promotional material, and someone to visit in September when they have their annual university fair for their students.

We then had lunch…

Then we were off to visit with Beijing Jiaotong University and the vice president from Haibin College, which is part of Jiaotong U, but 90 minutes south by bullet train, on the coast. They want to sign an exchange agreement and talk about a 2+2 in business. They plan to send 4 visiting professors to BSU next year as well. I have the initial information about course work in business and general education.

Next we went to CIBT’s office to visit with Jilin Teachers’ Institute of Engineering and Technology who was visiting from Changchun City. They wanted to talk about exchanges and joint programs. There seemed to be a match in TAD areas in particular, so that may come up at a later date. For now, we simply do the standard exchange agreement with them and then enter into further conversations. It was a good meeting; Bob and Mark were there and Chris Brown was as well. Chris is up to work the Expo this weekend along with others from Weifang, staffing the BSU booth starting tomorrow morning.

We all went to dinner afterwards and had Peking Duck.

I am back in the room, it is 1030, and I am going to bed. Tomorrow starts at 8 at the Expo.

Day 4…Wuhan to Beijing

Today is a short entry because it was more travel than anything else. We left Huanggang at 8 a.m. and drove the 90 minutes to the Wuhan airport. It was raining again, as it has every day during this trip. The road near the airport was under construction and there was a detour with a lot of traffic which slowed us down a lot. The thin margin of time to get to the airport got suddenly thinner. We arriived 30 minutes before the flight…rushed to check in…and to security. Fortunately security was not a long line so we got to the gate in time to board.

In Beijing, we checked into the Holiday Inn at 3:30 and met up with Bob and Mark. We debriefed the Hunan Polytechnic visit they made and the Wuhan and Huanggang visits we made. They had a great visit, and Hunan wishes to send several faculty members to BSU/NTC this summer or fall. We will know more as the detail are worked out via Mark and Bob with them.

We then walked to an old weapons factory that has been converted into art studios and cafes for dinner. It was interesting to go into some of the art galleries and look around. Quiet…uncrowded…not like what you would expect in Beijing because its in the middle of a highly populated section of the city. Was a nice time to continuing talking about the visits, unwind, and get something to eat.

We returned to the hotel at 8, where I caught up email, called home, and went to bed.

Tomorrow…today…is Friday. We meet for breakfast soon, then Mark and Bob will be taken to visit Tianeman area, Olympic area, and the forbidden city for a bit of sightseeing. I will be taken to visit a private high school that is very selective and interested in BSU as a place for their graduates to attend, and a college interested in sending transfer students to a good university like BSU.

We will all then meet for a large dinner gathering at 5 with representatives from Haibin University to talk about what they are interested in doing with us, CIBT leadership, and some of our folks from Weifang. Haibin U asked to meet with us after seeing information on BSU at the last Expo.

That will be our day. Tomorrow Mark and Bob fly home while I spend the day at the Beijing Expo before leaving Sunday to go to D.C. for the Minnesota delegation visiting with the Saudi Mission and middle eastern delegation to talk about higher education collaboration and opportunities.

Day 3 of trip…Wuhan to Huanggang

Good evening. It’s 10:30 PM and day three is now over.

David An and I had breakfast this morning at eight then were picked up by folks from Huanggang Normal University. They drove us the one and a half hours to their city and university.

The city is small. It is just barely over 1 million people. The roads are wide and the traffic is very reasonable. It is much more relaxed and laid-back than Wuhan or Beijing or Shanghai. The university is the only one in the city. It has a little over 20,000 students. It is a regular four-year public university. Teacher education is still their number one program.

The campus was laid out well and easy to get around. They have about 30 foreign professors working here. They also have agreements with 30 international universities.

We had a tour of campus and then a very long meeting going over the standard exchange agreement. We talked about what could happen later after exchanges began. They are interested in 2+2 and 3+ 1 programs later down the road. They are interested in coming to visit our campus this summer. They are also interested in having a delegation of faculty come spend a week learning about higher education and K-12 education in the US.

They will have some students ready to come on exchange next fall. It sounds like two or three. They may have one or two faculty members interested in coming as visiting professors as well.

They wanted the agreement signed today since they must turn it in by the end of March in order to meet the government deadline for funding for next year. The funding will provide them what they need for visiting professors and to come visit our campus.

Their vice Pres. spent three months as a visiting professor at North Carolina State so we talked quite a bit about that since I was born and raised in North Carolina. We got along very well. I am sure this place will follow up and use funding to make things happen with us as a partner.

It took all day to meet, tour, go through the agreement, revise it, have the signing ceremony and then the typical three hour dinner. We got back to our hotel around nine.

And some it was extremely productive today. This will be a very good place to work with. I think it will be a productive partnership just like we have with two or three other places here. This could be one of those few core places that produces opportunities on both ends.

I heard that Mark and Bob had a good visit at the Polytechnic today as well but I don’t know any details yet. We all fly to Beijing and get together tomorrow to go over the days and plan next steps. We will also meet our students from Weifang who will come up for the booth at the expo. I think we will also have dinner with them tomorrow evening.

Time for sleep so that is all you get tonight.

Enjoy your day.