Published: Oct. 7, 2021

Editor’s note: This is the first in a monthly series of campus updates on CU Boulder’s efforts to build a common student-centered approach to teaching and learning. This series will continue throughout the academic year.

In this issue

Chancellor charges leadership team to expedite student success efforts

Chancellor Philip DiStefano, along with Provost Russell Moore and Chief Operating Officer Patrick O’Rourke, has charged a team of leaders from across the university to serve on the Buff Undergraduate Success Leadership Implementation Team (BUS-LIT) to support undergraduate student success efforts.

The team, which will be led by Katherine Eggert, senior vice provost for academic planning and assessment; Akirah Bradley-Armstrong, vice chancellor for student affairs; Jon Leslie, senior associate vice chancellor and chief communications officer; and Marin Stanek, senior associate vice chancellor and chief information officer, will work collaboratively with faculty, staff and students, as well as college and school academic leadership, shared governance organizations, and other administrative student-facing units to streamline processes and more effectively direct resources toward student success.

“I am extremely grateful to our dedicated staff and faculty who work tirelessly to help our undergraduate students navigate their progress toward receiving their degrees and gain a sense of belonging on campus,” said DiStefano. “By charging this team of leaders, I am confident that we can create a more efficient and effective process for achieving student success.”

Although there are already a variety of programs designed around student success, these programs––which include campus programs to increase retention, help students receive their degrees in a timely manner and create a sense of belonging––lack campuswide coordination and the appropriate visibility and resource support.

The BUS-LIT, specified in the chancellor’s recent charge, will determine a method for assessing the effectiveness of current and planned programs and bringing them to leadership's attention. The BUS-LIT will act in tandem with cross-functional working groups that will be responsible for inventorying and analyzing student success programs on campus. 

 BUS-LIT committee members

  • Sonia DeLuca Fernández, senior vice chancellor for diversity, equity and inclusion
  • Aisha Jackson, assistant vice chancellor and assistant vice provost for academic technology and student success
  • Daryl Maeda, dean of undergraduate education
  • Kevin MacLennan, associate vice chancellor of enrollment management
  • Beth Myers, assistant vice provost for student success initiatives
  • Joe Thomas, senior executive aide to the vice chancellor for student affairs
  • Brad Weiner, interim chief data officer
  • Kristi Wold-McCormick, assistant vice provost and university registrar


  • Abby Benson, deputy chief operating officer
  • Mark Kavanaugh, associate vice chancellor and chief of staff of academic affairs
  • Robert Stubbs, director of institutional research

How to stay informed

The BUS-LIT team has established a webpage with an overview of its work, which will be updated and expanded throughout the academic year. The team will also be engaging broadly with students, faculty, staff and governance and leadership groups as it prioritizes actions and moves them forward. Please visit the page to review the BUS-LIT charge and to submit comments and questions regarding its work, and please look for continuing updates through CU Boulder Today.

Common curriculum planning committee 

Provost Russell Moore recently appointed members of the Common Curriculum Planning Committee to continue the groundwork laid last year in creating a common learning experience and a common set of learning outcomes for CU Boulder undergraduate students.

Developing a common curriculum for undergraduate students was recommended in the Academic Futures report (PDF) and reinforced in the reaccreditation review (PDF) from the Higher Learning Commission. Last spring, Eggert and Robert Shay, professor of musicology and a former dean of the College of Music, co-led a campuswide listening tour for developing a common curriculum that involved more than 1,000 faculty, staff and students from academic units, shared governance groups, student groups and academic support organizations. Read the full Common Curriculum committee announcement.

Improvements to course alert process

In its ongoing effort to support student success, the Office of Undergraduate Education is introducing changes to the undergraduate course alert process this fall that will allow instructors greater flexibility for submitting alerts based on their course timeline and students more time to respond.

“These changes are a direct result from the significant feedback we’ve received from instructors and faculty,” said Beth Myers, assistant vice provost for student success initiatives. “We now have the capability to include four-week, five-week, eight-week and 10-week sessions that were not included in the past.”

See the full course alert announcement.