The Columbia Chronicle

Stan Wearden, senior vice president and provost, has said increasing the average class size by one student could save the college $1 million a year. The college is also currently exploring larger lecture hall style classes to be implemented in future semesters.

How big is too big? College weighs in on increased class sizes

March 30, 2015

Students can expect larger class sizes in some courses offered next semester when fall 2015 registration goes live April 6, as courses with up to a 200-student capacity could be introduced to the curriculum.A...

Big people, small people, little people. What’s the difference? | The Columbia Chronicle

February 2, 2015

The Chronicle sat down with Krystle Ansay, president of the Windy City chapter of Little People America, and pianist and composer Chris Errera.Ansay and Errera spoke about the discrimination they experience...

Educating fear and ignorance

By Editorial Board

January 26, 2015

Radical Islamist terrorists have rocked the world with relentless acts of violence in recent weeks. The Jan. 7–9 Charlie Hebdo and kosher market shootings carried out in Paris by radical Islamists linked to a Yemen al-Qaida group were plastered across media outlets for days. In the outer rims of the news cycle, the militant Islamist terrorist group Boko Haram razed the Nigerian villages of Baga and Doron Baga Jan. 3 and...

Lott Hill, executive director of the Center for Innovation in Teaching Excellence and advisor to Common Ground, the college’s LGBT student organization, tells members about a Nov. 18 college-wide forum about the reduced sections of LGBT Studies classes being offered in the Spring 2015 semester. 

LGBTQ students, allies cry foul

November 10, 2014

Outcry from students and faculty erupted across campus last week when the administration announced that the college would offer only one section of the Gay and Lesbian Studies I & II courses, effectively cutting the offerings in half. Reactions claiming potential bias from campu...

Stan Wearden, senior vice president and provost, addressed the college at Stage 2, 618 S. Michigan Ave., for the first time since he took the position. The assembly focused on the Strategic Planning Process and included an audience Q-and-A session.

Provost Stan Wearden discusses strategic plan

October 6, 2014

To commemorate his first 100 days as senior vice president and provost, Stan Wearden delivered an address to the college on Oct. 2 in the 618 S. Michigan Ave. Building. Similar to the Q-and-A President...

Pulling at the seams: Uptown’s decades-long heritage of diversity beginning to crumble

By Copy Chief

September 22, 2014

“Hey, man, can I have a smoke?”Startled from his private thoughts, Tobias Elder tried to keep walking past the man who asked him for a cigarette. The man looked like he could be a gang member, Elder says, and Elder was not in the mood to barter over cigarettes, so he tossed him the whole pack and tried to move on.To his surprise, the man followed him and looped an arm across his shoulders, asking what was wrong. When ...

Provost eyes faculty credentials

By Assistant Campus Editor

September 22, 2014

A new policy requiring full- and part-time faculty to submit updated curricula vitae and academic transcripts has some of those faculty members less than thrilled.On Aug. 25, Stan Wearden, senior vice president and provost, requested that all faculty members submit current CVs at the beginning of each academic year. For this year only, they are required to submit information by Dec. 13. Similarly, Wearden is also requiring copies of all academic transcripts. Wearden said his recent request is intended to keep up with industry standards and follow the practices at other high caliber institutions. “We are accredited by the Higher Learning Commission [of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools], and they have been very strict in recent years about making sure we are able to accurately report on the qualifications of our faculty,” Wearden said. “[In fact], a lot of the accrediting agencies and the federal government are being much more strict about having these kinds of records available. We just want to make sure we are aware of faculty’s accomplishments.”However, Columbia’s part-time faculty union, P-Fac, has objected to the new requirements. P-Fac is disputing the request for updated records, stating it goes against the college’s collective bargaining act agreement.Diana Vallera, P-Fac president and an adjunct faculty member in the Photography Department, said she is unsure why there is a need for updated records.“The issue is strictly the collective bargaining act,” Vallera said. “We want the best teachers for our students, and we want the college to honor our agreement.” P-Fac is planning to meet with the provost Sept. 22 to discuss the issue, Vallera said.According to Wearden, colleges are required to annually report any new publications, exhibitions and other accomplishments because of the increases in for-profit universities and online learning. Wearden said he has tried to ensure the faculty knows there will not be any changes to the status of current employment nor will the updated records serve as grounds for termination.“This isn’t an effort to re-qualify [faculty members] who have already been qualified,” Wearden said. “If their records are current and truthful, then their qualifications won’t change at all and I have no reason to think that they won’t be accurate and honest.”Wearden said he is not asking for updated records to search for evidence of wrongful behavior and that he would address any inaccuracies or questionable discoveries. However, the records could pinpoint which faculty members need to catch up on developments in their fields, he added.“It’s just a matter of having proper records,” Wearden said. “If someone isn’t staying current in their field and they’re teaching it in outdated ways, it should be addressed. However, I don’t have any evidence that that’s happening and I’m not looking for any.”Robin Bargar, dean of the School of Media Arts, reiterated Wearden’s statements. He said the need has to do with the continuous transformation of the college and its need to be conducted more like a university.“The request is likely because the records were never complete in the first place,” Bargar said.Bargar said the provost’s request for CVs and transcripts is a completely normal procedure for a college to impose because it is simply keeping up with standard university practices. He also said the currently employed faculty should not be worried about job security because there are no known reasons to terminate, employ or change anything taking place around the college. He said there are contractual practices already in place that will stay that way.Suzanne Blum-Malley, interim dean of the School of Liberal Arts and Sciences, also said it is just a standard practice for universities and colleges to keep their records current and updated.“I think what’s happened is it wasn’t an active practice to make sure that we know where and what people were doing and to also make sure that we acquired official transcripts when we hired the faculty,” Blum-Malley said.Transcripts do not need to be on a constantly updated basis unless a faculty member has earned a new degree and needs to update and re-submit the relevant documents, she said. “I know from talking to the provost that the intent behind this is just to make sure we have all of our ducks in a row,” Blum-Malley said. “We’re going to have to go through the process accreditation again to have all of our records up to date.”

Liberal arts degrees contribute billions to US economy

Liberal arts degrees contribute billions to US economy

March 31, 2014

Just when you were beginning to think your liberal arts degree was useless in the current economy, new statistics suggest otherwise. Data from the National Endowment of the Arts and the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis show that the arts and cultural production industry added a...

Stan Wearden, current dean of the College of Communication and Information at Kent State University, will begin his new job as Columbia’s senior vice president and provost on July 1.

Wearden named new provost

February 28, 2014

Stan Wearden will take over as Columbia’s new senior vice president and provost starting July 1, according to a Feb. 26 emailed announcement from President Kwang-Wu Kim. After carefully considering W...

Recession takes toll on Metra

Recession takes toll on Metra

February 17, 2014

More commuters than ever are turning to public transit, although Metra was left out in the cold during the Great Recession as commuters heavily relied on the Chicago Transit Authority, according to a Fe...

MacBooks catch a few rays

By Assistant Sports & Health Editor

February 10, 2014

The panic triggered by a dying laptop when there is no outlet in sight may be a thing of the past with the implementation of a possible new solar-powered feature in Apple’s MacBooks.Apple briefly detailed the potential features of a future MacBook in a patent approved Jan. 28 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. One of the new features is a rear plate on the back of the MacBook with solar cells underneath t...

Provost search draws to a close, two finalists chosen

Provost search draws to a close, two finalists chosen

January 27, 2014

The search for a new provost, a post that has been held on an interim basis for more than two years, is winding down, as two finalists will be visiting the campus Feb. 4 and 11. The names of the finalists have not been released but will be revealed to the student body when the ...

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