2. INSTITUTIONAL REPORT – completed in Fall ’16; submitted to WSCUC February 23, 2017
The Institutional Report represents a broad-based inquiry, engaging all employees in our ongoing discussion of Christian liberal arts education but drawing upon the work of faculty, student development staff, and the administration in their respective areas of expertise. The essays represent our honest effort to describe the current situation, identify accomplishments, analyze weaknesses, and propose changes for the university to address in the future. The final report was reviewed by the Educational Services and Executive committees of the Board at their February 2017 meeting.
The bulk of the report assumes the stance of an action research project built upon the hypothesis that Jessup successfully prepares transformational leaders and follows the pattern prescribed in the WSCUC Handbook to explore these five sub-themes:
- Jessup degrees are well-crafted to fulfill its mission with meaning, quality, and integrity. (essay 3)
- Graduates are prepared for transformational leadership by the time of graduation. (essay 4)
- Jessup empowers transformational leaders to engage in a lifelong pursuit of knowledge, spiritual formation, and service to their local and global communities. (essay 5)
- The academic program review is a reflective process of inquiry to assess program quality, rigor, and sustainability. (essay 6)
- Planning processes at the institution align resources and needs with the strategic objectives of the institution. (essay 7)
We present our academic and co-curricular programs in essay 3 and document the coherence of our educational offerings, which are aligned with high-quality practices and rigorous standards of excellence. The architecture of our assessment plan for the University Learning Goals is described in essay 4, where we offer evidence of the processes we have in place to demonstrate educational effectiveness in our academic programs and of the learning that has occurred and as we prove that our curriculum effectively prepares students for transformational leadership in the 21st century.
In essay 5, we explore three themes that emerged from document review to express student success: retention and graduation; employability; and demonstration of the lived values of leadership development, thriving spirituality, and community engagement. Quality assurance and improvement through data-informed program review processes ensure continuous institutional learning, as described in essay 6.
Finally, the report on strategic thinking and planning in essay 7 captures the many improvements we have made in institutional planning and offer a realistic financial picture to support our future. Our conclusion, then, is really more of a caesura, for the end of our story is but a pause as we consider our place in the changing landscape of higher education.