National Advisory Board Meeting
Alexander C. McCormick and Allison BrckaLorenz – Members of NSSE, FSSE, and BCSSE staff recently met with NSSE’s National Advisory Board to discuss important issues about higher education and the future of NSSE. Hosted at Lumina Foundation’s Indianapolis headquarters, the meeting opened with an enthusiastic welcome for three new board members:
- Loren J. Blanchard, Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic & Student Affairs at the California State University
- José Luis Cruz, President of Lehman College of The City University of New York
- Dennis Groth, Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education at Indiana University Bloomington
With the welcome of new board members comes the need to say goodbye to those rotating off the board. The board and NSSE staff gave their heartfelt thanks for the service of Dr. Daniel J. Bernstein, Professor Emeritus of Cognitive Psychology at the University of Kansas. Over his two terms on the board, Dr. Bernstein’s deep knowledge of effective classroom practices, interactive learning, and the scholarship of teaching and learning provided valuable insights to advance NSSE’s ongoing commitment to improving teaching and learning in higher education.
A major focus of the board’s discussion involved how to recognize, celebrate, and make meaning of NSSE’s 20-year milestone. The year 2020 will provide an opportunity to take stock of the project’s accomplishments and look ahead to our continuing role in promoting quality assessment and improvement. The board discussed the importance of using this milestone to highlight NSSE’s accomplishments, including focusing national and institutional attention on the conditions that promote student learning and success and helping institutional leaders and staff use data to change institutional cultures as well as programming. The board also encouraged a focus on the future, identifying how NSSE can contribute to vital conversations about the quality of undergraduate education. Recommendations included increasing interactive stories and use of data visualization, creating partnerships with other providers, and calling attention to students’ own stories. The board also encouraged NSSE staff to think about what engagement should look like for future students by thinking about the changing demographics, backgrounds, and needs of tomorrow’s college students.
Board member Debra Humphreys, Lumina Foundation’s Vice President of Strategic Engagement, updated the board about the foundation’s plans and future goals. The meeting also included reporting from staff on operational details and recent developments at NSSE, FSSE, and BCSSE.
Over two decades, NSSE has been the grateful beneficiary of an impressive roster of Advisory Board members. Their dedication to the cause of higher education, wise counsel, and vibrant conversation continue to be invaluable!