Thursday, September 22, 2011

The QEP: What will it be?

Members of Daytona State’s Quality Enhancement Plan topic selection committee are moving forward in the meticulous process of arriving at a final focus.
Dr. Evan Rivers, co-chair of the QEP Leadership Team,
speaks with workshop participants during Fall Planning.
More than 200 faculty, staff and administrators turned out for three working sessions during Fall Planning 2011. Their task was to rank a list of nearly two dozen proposed QEP topics originally derived from brainstorming sessions held this past spring, as well as from requests for pre-proposals sent out to key constituents in the Volusia and Flagler communities. The result thus far is a diverse range of topics: enhancing instructional technology and curriculum standards, cultivating student engagement and motivation, and strategies for improving retention, to name just a few.
 “It was evident from these workshops that there was a lot of passion at the tables,” said Prof. Joy Colarusso, who is leading the topic selection effort.
The topic selection committee now has a framework to begin refining, filtering and possibly combining those topics in order to come to a short list of five by January. Meanwhile, the committee will distribute a survey to the entire college community in October, which will help members further gauge sentiment among constituents regarding what they feel are the most pressing institutional needs that can be targeted through the QEP.

Dr. Ted Sofianos facilitates QEP
workshop discussion

Devising, developing and implementing a future course of action to enhance student learning are the main objectives of the QEP, which is a required element of the reaccreditation process defined by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. It is an opportunity for Daytona State to build upon its quality and effectiveness by focusing on a single issue considered critical to student success. While the SACS compliance recertification review looks at current institutional practices, the accrediting body added the QEP component to the reaffirmation process to encourage colleges to launch initiatives that aim even higher.
Colarusso is pleased with how the college community is responding to the topic selection initiative, particularly with the participation during the Fall Planning workshops. “As the process went forward, people began to see that maybe the thing they were most fervent about was not pinnacle, but could be part of the solution. That’s the kind of collaboration that SACS wants to see as topic development progresses.”
During the next phase of the selection process, the QEP team will review the proposed topics to determine if they can be supported and measured by research, are fiscally feasible, and whether they have previously been supported by academia and are relevant to SACS expectations. The five topics that meet these criteria will be refined in focus and further developed during the first half of 2012 before a final topic is selected.
The QEP will be submitted to SACS in the summer of 2013.
Visit the college’s SACS website at for regular updates and more details about the reaffirmation process and its participants.

Planning Council sets course for the year

Daytona State College’s Planning Council kicked off its annual orientation for new and returning members this month with a call to put students first as it sets priorities for the coming year.
“This is our chance to define our own future,” said college President Carol Eaton in welcoming Council members to the orientation. She emphasized the importance of the group’s work in helping to identify measurable institutional outcomes. “We want to be able to answer the question that this is how we know we have accomplished what we set out to do.”
Part of the college’s institutional effectiveness process and structure, the Planning Council identifies and prioritizes critical areas of need and makes recommendations to the president’s executive staff. Membership among its 11 committees is comprised of 50 percent faculty, plus administrators, professional staff, career employees and students in order to ensure fair representation and foster consensus building.  In existence at Daytona State for more than a decade, the Planning Council has been recognized by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools as an exemplary model of effective participatory governance.
One of the Council’s most important responsibilities is to validate the annual institutional plan developed by the Strategic Planning and Assessment Committee. The Council forwards the draft plan to the president and executive staff for approval and submission to the District Board of Trustees. The plan is key to helping unit managers develop their budgets based on annual college objectives and priorities.
In setting the tone for the year, Council Chair Angela Falconetti, associate vice president of Planning and Institutional Effectiveness, said, “We want to ensure that our work focuses on how well each recommendation will contribute to the overall achievement of students and the institution as a whole.”
Michelle McCraney, associate vice president for the Division of Library and Academic Student Services, is co-chairing the Council this year.
The Council also is charged with recommending how the institution will spend dollars left after fixed expenditures. In good times, this translates into finding innovative programs and initiatives to fund, while during lean times, it means finding innovative ways to save.
Last year was among the more austere times for the Council, when 11 proposals were submitted and approved with no required funding.  In contrast, in 2009, more than $1 million was allocated to fund 26 proposals.
The 11 Planning Council Committees include: Teaching and Learning; Administrative Unit Review; Institutional Technology; College Life; Enrollment Development; Faculty and Staff Development; Institutional Advancement; Operational Effectiveness and Accountability; Instructional Program Review, Strategic Planning and Assessment; and a new Grants committee.
Find out more about the Planning Council, its membership and its charge at

SBDC at Daytona State to host Marketing Mondays and Technology Tuesdays Lunch and Learn sessions

Learn about the latest in Internet marketing techniques and new technologies that can improve your business’s bottom line during a new series of monthly brown-bag learning lunches hosted by the Small Business Development Center at Daytona State College beginning in October.
Marketing Mondays and Technology Tuesdays will feature guest presentations by industry experts about how to leverage virtual technologies and strategies - from social media and mobile business productivity applications to digital integrated marketing and “cloud” computing.
Presentations scheduled for fall are:
             Oct. 11 - Put your iPad to Work
             Oct. 24 – Integrated Marketing Overview
             Nov. 22 – Introduction to Cloud Computing: Evolve Your Business
             Nov. 28 – Facebook and Twitter Essentials
             Dec. 12 - Present4: Who, What, Why, How?
             Dec. 13 - Go Mobile with Business Productivity Apps
All sessions will be held from noon to 1 p.m. in Bergengren Hall (Bldg. 110, Rm. 112) on Daytona State’s Daytona Beach Campus, 1200 W. International Speedway Blvd., and are free and open to the public.
Participants are urged to bring their own lunch, or they may purchase it at the college’s Lenholt  Student Center (Bldg. 130). Please RSVP by calling (386) 506-4723 or emailing

Notables. . .

Daytona State College has earned the Association of Florida Colleges 2011 Learning Resources Commission Exemplary Practice Award for learning support services.
The award is based on Daytona State’s “Under One Roof” model, which links its library, computing commons, a branch of its Academic Support Center, College Writing Center, online program support and Faculty Innovation Center within two adjoined buildings on the Daytona Beach Campus – Education Hall and the Karl Learning Resources Center. In addition to merging the physical locations of these student service areas, the college also employs strategies such as cross employment of student workers, cross training of support staff, creation of virtual blogs and FAQs, and resource sharing to ensure that students, staff and faculty can take full advantage of each department’s close proximity .
The model of creating such “learning commons” is a trend that is catching on at institutions across the country because of its potential to help improve student retention. The Daytona State model gained attention this past summer when library and learning support managers presented at the Florida Library Association’s 2011 Conference.
Chair of Library Services Mercedes Clement, and Learning Specialists Diane Holmes Curtice and Patrick Love will accept the award and present during educational sessions at AFC’s annual conference Oct. 26-28 in Naples, Florida.

The School of Education reports that 90 percent of its recent BS in Education graduates have been placed in teaching positions throughout Florida.
Program Chair Les Potter said, “We are getting calls nearly every day asking for more of our graduates. Yes, there are good K-12 teaching jobs available.”
Potter said students have been placed in 28 different public, private and charter K-12 schools encompassing six school districts (Volusia, Flagler, Seminole, St. Johns, Lake and Lee counties).