Published: Dec. 12, 2017

Student Innovation Action Team

Intro by Jeff Cox

  • Intro on teaching and research visioning
  • Laying out of fall work
  • Role of Committee and Report

Comment:  Given the high amount of student debt that will continue to get higher as the cost of education rises, CU should look at an income-sharing model where students pay a percentage of their post-graduate job income to cover the cost of tuition.  This could be another tool to help provide access to education.  IU Purdue provide this type of tuition model where students are eligible to participate once they reach their sophomore year.

Q:  What are the assumptions about enrollment over the next 10 years given the rising cost of tuition?  We have concerns about the make-up of the student body.

A:  There are differing opinions on campus about enrollment growth, but as a public institution, we have commitments around admitting a certain level of in-state students.  We are having many conversations around admissions.

Comment:  We are concerned that higher education is following the same path as healthcare, where costs are dramatically rising faster than the cost of living.  Tuition is double today as it was when we were freshmen. 

A:  The campus is aware of and concerned about the cost of tuition, and we are looking at various ways to lower the overall cost, such as removing the student burden to pay for program and course fees.  In general, we are priced similarly to our peer institutions for out-of-state tuition, and we are priced far below those peers for in-state tuition.

Q:  How are you reaching out to the student population for this process?

A:  We have two students (one graduate, one undergraduate) on our committee and we are working with them and student government on how best to engage the students.  We also know that professors are providing more opportunities to hear student voices, such as this meeting.

Comment:  We need to focus on providing courses and experiences that increase students’ creative confidence.  Students lose their creative potential by getting dragged into the routine of the traditional educational approach, but could do so much more for their career and society by exploring  and getting encouragement in creatively thinking about where they can take their degree and field of study.

Comment:  CU needs to focus on new ways of imparting data and information.  Faculty are presenting information in old-style ways that is not as useful.  We need to have new applications and new programs that impart data and information more effectively.

Comment:  The freshman year should really focus on career exploration.  Most students do not know what they really want to do or what the “day to day” looks like for their chosen major. 

  • Students need to know what to expect when they graduate to give them a chance to see if that really matches what they want to do before they get too far down the road on their degree and find out that career is not a match for their aspirations.
  • Need to have a “design and plan” focus on education and advising where adjustments can be easily made as necessary as a student finds out more about what they want to do.  Students need to know what is possible in designing a degree, impediments, etc.
  • Need to understand how to show value to potential employers when taking an interdisciplinary path (bringing more tools to the table) vs. just focusing on the same old degree “certification” and/or GPA.

Comment:  We feel like CU is more focused on work force development rather than to learn how to think for yourself or prepare us for changes that will come once we are out, especially as society becomes more information and technology driven.

Comment:  On the other hand, we need to recognize that many students to not have the luxury of exploring what they want to do and instead need to just get an education that will help them get a job to sustain themselves.

Comment:  The university needs to provide intersectional occurrences for education where students get exposure to things they had never considered.  This creates a fundamental shift that increases the value of education and can be a valuable asset for the university.

Comment:  There are a lot of global research opportunities going on, but research grants that get rewarded seem to be US-focused.  We need to focus on a global view.

Comment:  Much of the education seems to be focus on theory than how to apply the knowledge to solving real-word problems.  We need to have both research and professional tracks in the degrees.  We are having to take classes that are not useful for our tracks, which means we are paying for courses that we don’t need.

Comment:  We need more opportunity to take a diverse set of classes to meet the changes in society.  Students in the business school can take A&S classes, but not the reverse.  Business students cannot take courses in the engineering center. 

Comment:  CU need to utilize others in the community.  There are many experts in many fields who could contribute to our education, but they cannot teach courses because they do not have advanced degrees.