University of Hawaiʻi President David Lassner made his report to the Board of Regents at their meeting, July 21, 2016.

  1. Update on the Integrated High Level Systemwide Academic and Facilities Strategic Plan
  2. Update on reorganization of administrative support functions
  3. Update on chancellor searches
  4. Overview of Regents and Presidential Scholarships program

Update on the Integrated High Level Systemwide Academic and Facilities Strategic Plan

In October 2015, the board passed a resolution for the development of an Integrated Systemwide Academic and Facilities Plan to provide clarity around academic and facilities planning decisions and to help frame future discussions and decision making in these areas. The plan is being designed to address questions such as:

  • What is the appropriate placement of current and future programs in order to build efficiencies, avoid unnecessary duplication and leverage available physical assets?
  • How will UH meet state education and workforce needs through strategic collaboration and sharing of academic offerings and to leverage capacity through distance learning, transfer, articulation, pathways, etc.?
  • What are the facilities requirements to support instruction and research at each campus and what will be the appropriate rationale for prioritizing which facilities projects are undertaken and when?

We are beginning with a new approach to academic planning being led by VP Risa Dickson. A set of positioning statements will describe mission differentiation across the UH System and provide guidance on what the four academic units (Mānoa, West Oʻahu, Hilo, community colleges) will and will not programmatically offer. Difficult conversations are underway with the vice president for academic planning and policy, university chancellors and the vice president for community colleges and initial versions of these statements are in draft form. These will be brought to the faculty for further discussion at the beginning of the academic year, for further development and finalization in the fall semester.

Additional supportive elements also in development are:

  • A revised program proposal process and associated policies—the new process will answer questions about how a new program fits into the overall system vision and direction as well as the campus context. It will also provide for a high-level review by the academic leaders of all units before significant work is done on new program proposals. A first draft of this process will be considered at the Council of Chief Academic Officers this month and full consultation on the process is expected to take place during the fall semester. A new cost analysis template is being designed to accompany new program proposals.
  • The creation of a system level strategic enrollment management plan—currently a committee is collecting existing campus plans and researching best practices with a goal of recommending a system level enrollment strategy.
  • The development of a distance learning plan to address how UH will meet state needs through the use of university centers and technology as well as campus-based programming.

Initial facilities-related work is focused on evaluating classroom space usage and course scheduling across the system. UH has engaged a vendor, Ad Astra, to conduct a study on the efficient use of classroom space and scheduling at our campuses. Honolulu CC participated in an initial pilot and the results were very useful. Ad Astra is particularly interested in working with UH as they see us as national leaders with our work on integrating our GPS (STAR) system with our registration system and ability to inform course scheduling. The other nine campuses are set to begin their analyses in summer and fall.

More formal facilities planning will be guided by academic plans and a deeper understanding of how current facilities are being used.

Vice President Dickson will be providing a more complete update at the next BOR Academic/Student Affairs Committee meeting.

Update on reorganization of administrative support functions

Proposals have been drafted for the consolidation of human resources, communications and facilities/construction services as described to the full board earlier this year. Vice President Jan Gouveia is in active discussions over the summer and consultation will take place with faculty groups at the beginning of the fall semester after they return. Formal reorganizations will comply with standard procedures as set forth in applicable policies, which require thorough consultation. Reorganizations in facilities/construction and communications may precede human resources, but all are anticipated to be completed this calendar year.

Update on chancellor searches

Active searches are underway for new chancellors at UH Mānoa and UH West Oʻahu. Search advisory committees were formed last spring and the membership was publicly posted. Search firms are not being retained for either search. Ads have been placed locally and nationally and remain online, and we have now passed the date for best consideration of applications.

I am grateful to both search advisory committees for their commitments to work through the summer. The committees are currently in the process of reviewing candidate materials and scheduling first-round interviews over the summer, typically via Skype. Finalist candidates will be invited to campuses for visits in early fall. The current part of the process is highly confidential but once the finalists are identified those names will become public, and there will be substantial opportunity for the campus communities and stakeholders to meet the candidates and offer input when they make their campus visits early in the fall. With successful searches, we believe new chancellors can be in place for the beginning of the spring semester.

Both searches remain open until the positions are filled, so if you know of good candidates, please continue to encourage them to submit materials or pass their names to Dave Lonborg, who is helping coordinate the searches with the committee chairs.

Overview of Regents and Presidential Scholarships program

The UH Board of Regents and Presidential Scholarships program (RAPS) was created to support students with a record of outstanding academic achievement.

Each year Regents Scholarships are awarded to 20 outstanding freshmen with strong records of academic achievement and whose extracurricular achievements are shown to be remarkable. Presidential Scholarships are awarded each year to 10 juniors with records of sustained academic progress and evidence of superior academic achievement or creative endeavor. Several years ago the Presidential Scholarship program was refocused on community college transfer students since that’s such an important part of what we do as a system, but Presidential Scholarships are also awarded to continuing juniors. In total, in any given year the maximum number of RAPS participants is 100, comprising 80 Regents and 20 Presidential Scholars.

Regents Scholars receive a full tuition waiver for four years of undergraduate study, and Presidential Scholars receive a full tuition waiver for two years of undergraduate study. All RAPS scholars receive a $4,000 per year stipend and a one-time travel grant of $2,000.

Funding for the RAPS stipends and program expenses comes from the earnings from the legacy endowment we report on each year. The individual campuses fund their awardee tuition waivers. The scholarship recipients are selected by the Offices of the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs at UH Hilo, UH Mānoa and UH West Oʻahu in cooperation with the UH System Office of the Associate Vice President for Student Affairs. We are also fundraising with UH Foundation for additional RAPS support, such as the Daniel K. Akaka Regents and Presidential Scholarships and the Victor Chu Regents and Presidential Scholarships.

This year’s scholars include students from across the state—from Waiʻanae to Kailua on Oʻahu, from Hoʻolehua on Hawaiʻi Island. They represent a cross section of both public and private high schools. Former Regents and Presidential Scholars have gone on to successful careers including corporate CEOs, law firm partners, veterinarians, engineers, medical researchers, doctors, surgeons and even a Miss Hawaiʻi.

Each year, a dinner is held to honor the new Regents and Presidential Scholars and their families. This dinner, which follows today’s BOR meeting, is also an opportunity for the scholars and their families to meet the Regents, UH administration, former awardees and supporters of the scholarship program.