CSU, Chico News

Grant Aids Campus Effort To Be a Leader in General Education

Date: 02-25-2009

Joe Wills
Public Affairs

California State University, Chico has received $40,000 to advance revision of its general education program and incorporate civic engagement and other “high impact” educational practices in GE to enhance student learning and success.

Chico is one of three CSU campuses to receive the funding from the Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U), which is administering funds provided by the Carnegie Corporation of New York, the State Farm Companies Foundation and the Lumina Foundation. The other CSU campuses are San Jose State and California State University, Sacramento.

The project is part of a tri-state consortium involving the CSU system, the University of Wisconsin system and the University of Oregon system designed to update general education for the 21st century. The two AAC&U programs focused on implementing new designs for general education are the “Give Students a Compass” and “Making Excellence Inclusive” programs, the latter aimed at ensuring that the revised curriculum and enhanced educational practices are available to all students. The overall goal of the program is to advance national efforts to create a more comprehensive vision of general education at large public university systems.

At CSU, Chico, the grant is helping to fund the activities of the GE Design Team, a group of faculty, staff and administrators leading the campus in a general education re-visioning effort. The GE Design Team is co-chaired by Dean of Undergraduate Education William Loker and Professor Sara Trechter, Department of English. Loker and Trechter recently attended a national conference to discuss the goals of the project.

According to Dean Loker, “The Compass and Making Excellence Inclusive grants are very timely for our campus, as we were already committed to a major review of general education at Chico. Being a part of this national effort will help Chico position itself as a leader in the State of California in providing a high-quality, distinctive general education program for our students. In a time of extremely tight state budgets, this funding represents a welcome measure of support for our efforts to enhance the student experience in GE at Chico.”