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Committee Formed to Develop Quality Enhancement Plan for Catawba

February 10, 2014

Category: Alumni, Athletics, Faculty, Staff


hedrick6.jpgEight faculty and staff members and one trustee from Catawba College have agreed to serve on the institution's Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) Committee. This committee will oversee the development of a critical component of Catawba's reaffirmation of accreditation with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC). A QEP is a focused strategy for improving student learning.

QEP Committee members include Dr. Rhonda Truitt, associate professor and chair of teacher education (serving as QEP co-chair); Dr. Buster Smith, assistant professor of sociology (serving as QEP co-chair); Dr. Jay Bolin, assistant professor of biology; Elaine Holden, director of admissions; Craig Turnbull, senior assistant director of athletics; Margaret Faust, director of alumni and parent relations; Jeff Bowe, assistant professor of business and director of SEGS Partnerships; Robin Perry, director of career services; and Barbara Marshall, trustee and chair of the Academic Quality Committee of the Board of Trustees.

After campus-wide feedback concerning five different proposed QEP topics, Catawba's SACSCOC Leadership Team decided to make career awareness the focus of the institution's QEP.

"The topic of career awareness is one that meets many aspects of not just what is going on in higher education today, but is also closely aligned with Catawba's mission: that through our value of 'providing an education rich in personal attention,' we seek to do so by blending 'the knowledge and competencies of liberal studies with career preparation,' " said Dr. Michael Bitzer, provost of the college.

In developing a QEP on career awareness, the committee will:

  • define the Student Learning Outcomes, which result in changes in student knowledge, skills, behaviors or values;
  • research the topic of career awareness;
  • identify the actions to be implemented;
  • establish a timeline for implementation;
  • organize for a successful implementation;
  • identify the necessary resources needed;
  • develop the means of assessing the impact of the QEP; and,
  • prepare the QEP for submission.

The committee will present the final proposed QEP to the full campus for public comment and feedback beginning with the fall 2014 semester.

Catawba College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) to award bachelor's and master's degrees. The Commission on Colleges is located in Decatur, Georgia. To maintain its accreditation, every 10 years, Catawba must collect and submit data as part of the institution's decennial review by the Commission. The academic year 2013-2014 is the year of record for Catawba with a final report, called a Compliance Certification, due to the Commission in September of this year. That report will be followed by both an off-site review and an on-site visit to Catawba by committees consisting of representatives from Commission member institutions. The QEP that will be developed is a part of the comprehensive reaffirmation of accreditation process. Catawba will learn if its accreditation has been reaffirmed by SACSCOC during the second half of 2015.