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Supporting Strategic Innovation at TC: State of the College 2014

"Good afternoon. Welcome to the annual State of the College.

Thank you, Bobby, for that introduction – and for your dedication to TC. Bobby received his master’s in Counseling and Clinical Psychology in May, and he now is a Ph.D. candidate in Counseling Psychology. We’re delighted he chose to remain at TC.

I look forward to this opportunity each year to share with the TC community our good news and accomplishments, our challenges, and our plans for the future.

Today, I want to focus on how we’re moving forward – on multiple fronts – to support strategic innovation, better positioning TC as a 21st century institution that will continue to lead, educate, and innovate. With a changing technological environment and changing opportunities for professionals and scholars in the fields we serve, we need to evolve and innovate.

In meetings and conversations over the last year with and among faculty, TC leadership, staff, students and alumni, we keep coming back to a critical question: How can we better enable and support innovation – with the ultimate goal to sustain and renew our legacy of pioneering and shaping programs and fields? As we renew and redesign, how can we be the most strategic, coordinate our efforts and maximize success? Sometimes that question is: How can we get things done?

For example, consider some of our new innovative programs – like Professor Lisa Miller’s first-of-its-kind Summer Intensive Master’s Program in General Psychology, with a Spirituality Mind Body Concentration, which already has garnered tremendous interest; the new Global Competence Certificate Program, led by Professor Bill Gaudelli, which is the first graduate-level certificate program in global competence education for U.S. school teachers and leaders. Professor Ryan Baker taught a MOOC last year and he has worked with colleagues to design a master’s degree in data analytics. And we have the new Sexuality, Women & Gender initiative led by Professors Melanie Brewster, Aurelie Athan, and Riddhi Sandil. Given the positive response to these ideas, we must look at how we can seize more opportunities to translate the marvelous ideas and visions of our faculty into programs that advance TC’s global leadership across the fields we embody.    

This year, we will encourage the TC community to think strategically about how we can create and develop more innovative programs, better serve our students, and conduct our business with greater effectiveness, productivity, and success. There is much hard work ahead, but the hope is our efforts will bear fruit and help us create a more robust College in every way.    

On the program side, we’ve asked Vice Provost Bill Baldwin to lead the effort to improve our capacity to support faculty program initiatives, to streamline the often complex and time-consuming approval processes within the College and externally. We have a number of innovative new degree and certificate programs awaiting State approval, and many more in the pipeline.  Bill is working with dozens of faculty members on ways to support further new program development.

Today, I lunched with John King, New York State Education Commissioner, and we talked about how to encourage swift action on our programs awaiting approval.

There’s a particular interest in certificate programs. There are myriad possibilities to better serve thousands of TC alumni and other professionals throughout their careers with professional development opportunities. Some faculty are already engaged in this work, while many more have promising ideas they are eager to develop and offer to alumni. We’ve long felt a moral obligation to serve our alumni – to help them upgrade their knowledge and skills. Now technology may enable much greater and more fruitful focus – particularly on post-M.A. professionals.     

To strengthen our technology expertise and capacity, we brought on board last month a new Chief Information Officer for the College, Naveed Husain. He comes to us from Queens College, where he established an impressive record of success over 10 years to bring major technology innovations and upgrades across Queens College. Naveed also has worked as a U.N. peacekeeper – an experience that might come in handy at TC.

The Board of Trustees has made an investment in building support for enhanced digital offerings. We’re currently conducting a national search for a newly created position: Vice Provost for Digital Learning. This individual, who will report to the Provost, will provide expertise and guidance on strategic direction and use of technology to enhance our practices and broaden our offerings – both non-credit – aimed primarily at the post-M.A. market I described – and for-credit online courses and degrees.

Other pieces of the picture also must take shape. Thanks to a recommendation from the Faculty Subcommittee on Finance, Facilities, and Support Services, we will invest in marketing and support for faculty to design new efforts. The Committee also has spearheaded several subgroups focusing on possibilities for and obstacles to innovation, including incentives for faculty to engage in new programs. Our new registration system will include non-credit as well as for-credit registrants in the same system. A new Intellectual Property Policy making its way through the faculty and Trustees. It encourages incentives for new patentable or licensable products, such as games or software. And we hope EdLab can take on a big role in helping faculty, staff, students, and alumni refine products that could be marketed.

We’re in the process of creating a new Board of Trustees Committee on strategic innovation that will study and make recommendations on our institutional needs and goals across all these areas.

Strategic innovation at TC won’t happen overnight. But we’re determined to make substantial progress in the year ahead. That will take the help and expertise of everyone at TC – and we need your thoughtful feedback, as we develop and implement policies and practices and adapt new technologies. We have so many diverse constituencies at the College who have a great deal to contribute to this process. That’s why it’s so critical that we rely on TC’s structure of representative governance to facilitate participation in these efforts.

We’ve talked a great deal about shared governance over the years – and personally I’m very pleased and very grateful with the progress we’ve all made to assure that voices are heard, input is real and concerns met – although we must always strive to improve. But we also depend on representative governance. I encourage everyone to share ideas and concerns with your respective representatives – we have various governance groups, committees and networks that are charged with representing students, faculty, professional staff, administrative staff, and union members. The job of your representatives is to ensure your voices are heard and your views part of the discussion. I look forward to working with representatives of all stakeholders at TC to, once again, renew our historic legacy, and make us now the most innovative graduate school of education in the world.  

Our work on innovation – and all our plans for the years ahead – are supported by our campaign: Where the Future Comes First: The Campaign for Teachers College. Let me give you an update on the campaign and how it is supporting TC’s people and priorities.

We’ve made significant progress toward our goal of $300 million since the campaign launch last November. As of October 1st, we have raised more than $180 million toward our funding priorities: scholarships and fellowships, faculty support and programs and partnerships, renewing our campus and technology, and the TC Fund and other unrestricted giving. Thank you to all who have been working so hard on this effort.   

Financial support for our students is our number-one funding priority for the campaign – it’s so important that, since the launch of the campaign, we increased the goal for financial aid to $124 million. Our generous alumni, faculty, trustees and friends are responding with giving as never before. Scholarship giving for fiscal year 2014 stood at $12.4 million, which was a 35 percent jump over last year’s final total of $9.2 million.

In 2014, we introduced two new scholarships that have provided outstanding support to incoming students. The first was the introduction of new support for students from Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU’s) who are pursuing teacher education fields. We offered full funding to three incoming master’s students.

A second is an $18,000 scholarship to an incoming master’s student who wishes to pursue work on LGBTQ issues. Collaborating with the Tyler Clementi Foundation, we offered this new scholarship to a master’s student in Adult Learning & Leadership.

For continuing students, this year we introduced two new scholarship programs: the 125th Anniversary Scholarship, which was created with money raised at our Gala last November, and the Doctoral Dissertation Grant Scholarships.

Overall, in the last six years, our institutional scholarship and financial aid budget has increased by almost 80 percent. In the last year alone, our institutional scholarship and financial aid budget increased by almost 20 percent.  That means more students than ever before are receiving financial support from TC.

We’re making progress in recruiting new, fully-funded doctoral students to the College each year. This year, 45 percent of our entering cohort of new full-time doctoral students received full funding. This is up from 15 percent in previous years – a significant jump. And, when we offer those packages, our yield is high.

For this year’s entering class, our yield of fully funded doctoral students was 85 percent, which indicates the importance of offering competitive packages to attract the best students. While all these indicators are promising, we have far to go toward funding our students in line with our peer institutions.

Recently I’ve heard and read many appreciative comments from students and faculty – and from some families – about the increased support for students. Because of this support, we are able to attract and retain the best students to TC – and help them to graduate without the crushing burden of debt. We’re so excited about this next generation of TC people who – like generations before them – are determined to change the world.  

I always love to share the good news about our students. As we do every fall, we welcomed a new class to TC. They number 1,844, and they are immensely talented. Our new students range in age from 20 to 64, and they come to TC from every corner of the country and from around the world. This year, 23 percent of incoming students are from outside the U.S. – that’s an all-time high, coming from 67 different countries. It is especially noteworthy that 17 nations new to the College are represented in this entering class – they truly are a global group.

Overall, our students continue to get more diverse in every way. This year, the proportion of U.S. citizens enrolled at the College who self-identify as students of color is more than 40 percent.

Our commitment to diversity is nationally recognized, and certainly one of TC’s distinctive legacies. In the 2014 Almanac of Higher Education, we have been ranked sixth among U.S. universities in granting the most doctoral degrees to black students. We’re the only private college in the top 10, and we are a much smaller institution than the other highly ranked schools like the University of Michigan. While we are proud of our recognition, our work is far from done. We’re striving to be a leader across all the diverse groups represented in these rankings.

In regard to faculty, we would be here all day talking about their accomplishments in research, practice and policy, and the innovative programs they create. Very often these new efforts are externally funded.

It’s fantastic that in a time of fiscal constraint across the board, our faculty research funding has been on the rise – from $34.4 million in Fiscal Year ‘07 to about 41 million in Fiscal Year ‘13. Over that time, we’ve seen a nearly 50 percent increase in funding from federal sources, which is significant, given cuts in federal spending.

We’ve had recent great news in that regard. Our teacher preparation program TR@TC2 recently won a $7.5 million federal grant from the U.S. Department of Education’s New Teacher Quality Partnership. TR@TC2 is modeled after the medical residency. The grant will be used to recruit, train and support teachers in the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) disciplines.

Congratulations to program director and Vice Dean for Teacher Education Lin Goodwin and her colleagues for this wonderful achievement! 

This summer, Tom Bailey was at the White House with Education Secretary Arne Duncan and other administration officials to announce the launch of TC’s new Center for the Analysis of Postsecondary Readiness. The new center is being launched with a five-year $9.9 million federal grant, which is incredibly exciting. Tom, as you know, is the George and Abby O’Neill Professor of Economics and Education, and he leads our nationally recognized Community College Research Center. 

The Dean Hope Center and the Department of Counseling and Clinical Psychology have received a prestigious grant from the federal Health Resources & Services Administration. The grant will provide stipends for six doctoral students for training in integrated psychology/health care for underserved populations.

TC is one of 40 institutions in the country to receive the three-year grant, which provides an almost $200,000 per year. This is critical and urgent work as the Affordable Care Act is changing the way health care is organized and delivered around the country. Congratulations to Dean Hope Center Director Dinelia Rosa, as well as Lisa Miller, Professor of Clinical Psychology, and Marie Miville, Professor of Counseling Psychology!  

Our National Center for Restructuring Education, Schools & Teaching won a $12 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education for its STEM Early College Expansion Partnership. The partnership provides high-quality professional development to teachers in early college programs in STEM fields who work with high-need students.

Of course, no new academic year is complete without the arrival of talented and promising new faculty members. This fall, we greeted nine new faculty members and a postdoctoral research fellow. They are a distinguished group of scholars who are diverse in their backgrounds and research interests. Their fields range from early childhood education to learning sciences; and from speech pathology to bilingual/bicultural education. I encourage you to peruse our new faculty gallery on the TC homepage to learn more about these impressive scholars.

They join an already incredibly strong faculty – in fact, our faculty are the best of any graduate school of education in the world. I think that’s something we can all agree on.

Of our current faculty, more than one-third have been recruited over the last seven years – which indicates that we are continuing to attract world-class scholars to TC and renew our intellectual legacy each year.

The diversity of our entire faculty has been increasing as well. Today, 24 percent of faculty members are people of color, more than half of whom have been hired since 2007.

TC’s external reach continues to grow and flourish. Our REACH partnership continues to help serve the academic, social and health needs of students in six public schools in Harlem. REACH stands for Raising Educational Achievement Coalition of Harlem, and it is a signature initiative of our Office of School and Community Partnerships, led by Associate VP Nancy Streim. If you used a Chase ATM in the last month you may have noticed a message about the bank’s support for REACH through its $1 million donation. 

We’re especially thrilled with the progress being made by students at our partnership school: the Teachers College Community School. The good news is spreading like wildfire. TCCS saw more applications for its kindergarten seats this year than any other school in Districts 5 or 6, with 469 students vying for 50 spots. This summer, we joined Principal Jeanene Worrell-Breeden and an array of New York City officials to officially open a new city-funded playground at the school this summer.

Our international reach remains an important part of our work. We continue to collaborate with the Columbia Global Centers, with the goal of having projects with all eight centers. Much of TC’s global engagement focuses on capacity-building and helping nations and communities develop and retain their own expertise.

One example is the work being done in Brazil by Brian Perkins, Director of TC’s Urban Education Leaders Program. He serves as a consultant to the municipal government of Rio de Janeiro to help build leadership capacity in the schools. He teamed with two TC doctoral graduates to help Rio’s education department create a leadership development academy – and 20 principals just completed the program.  

This summer, Professor Helena Verdeli, from Psychology, worked with Syrian refugees in Jordan to explore the potential of psychotherapy to ease depression in children and adults in war-torn regions of the world. Her work is tremendously important right now when so there is so much psychological trauma as a result of armed conflicts, poverty, and disease. 

As we enable and support strategic innovation, we will continue to identify new possibilities for global collaborations and seek opportunities to engage in international work.

I look forward each year at the State of the College to our recognition of the Elaine Brantley award-winners. We will honor this year’s winners shortly. But I want to take a moment to acknowledge them: Aklilu Ghidey, who works in the Business Services Center; and James Kearney and Dennis Chambers from the Office of Public Safety. As many of you know, Dennis is a TC alumnus who has earned two master’s degrees and an Ed.D.

It’s no accident that two members of our Public Safety staff are represented this year. I know I speak for everyone here when I say how much their work is valued and appreciated. They keep us safe every day. But they also are some of TC’s best ambassadors. They are the first people new and prospective students meet when they come to campus. They help thousands of visitors each year navigate our sometimes confusing campus and get to their destinations. When alumni return to campus, they often take a moment to catch up with public safety officers who were such an important part of their daily lives here.

They know every nook and cranny of this campus and are ever-alert to the surroundings. So it’s no surprise that our public safety officers made an incredible find recently – a wallet that was lost by a TC student in Bancroft Hall 33 years ago! Alumna Jennifer Eyges was reunited with her wallet – and her ID from 1981 – when she visited campus to thank them. Isn’t that an amazing story?

So let’s take this opportunity to show our appreciation for our Public Safety Officers. Thank you for everything you do for TC!

Finally, I want to say a few words about the loss this year of TC icons: Maxine Greene, George Bond, and, just recently, Jack Mezirow. On Monday afternoon in this auditorium we held a memorial event for Maxine that was both moving and joyous. She touched so many lives and so many generations of students!

We will celebrate the life and legacy of George Bond on October 28. I encourage you to attend this event. I guarantee you will be inspired by the stories of his groundbreaking work and his life-changing impact on students and colleagues. 

We are just beginning to plan a memorial for Jack and welcome suggestions on how to celebrate him. 

We are so fortunate to have had luminaries like these, whose influence will endure and help light the road ahead for our College. Let us be inspired by their work and their dedication to our College as we go forward, together, this year to build an even stronger TC." - President Susan Fuhrman

 


Published Thursday, Oct. 9, 2014

Supporting Strategic Innovation at TC: State of the College 2014

"Good afternoon. Welcome to the annual State of the College.

Thank you, Bobby, for that introduction – and for your dedication to TC. Bobby received his master’s in Counseling and Clinical Psychology in May, and he now is a Ph.D. candidate in Counseling Psychology. We’re delighted he chose to remain at TC.

I look forward to this opportunity each year to share with the TC community our good news and accomplishments, our challenges, and our plans for the future.

Today, I want to focus on how we’re moving forward – on multiple fronts – to support strategic innovation, better positioning TC as a 21st century institution that will continue to lead, educate, and innovate. With a changing technological environment and changing opportunities for professionals and scholars in the fields we serve, we need to evolve and innovate.

In meetings and conversations over the last year with and among faculty, TC leadership, staff, students and alumni, we keep coming back to a critical question: How can we better enable and support innovation – with the ultimate goal to sustain and renew our legacy of pioneering and shaping programs and fields? As we renew and redesign, how can we be the most strategic, coordinate our efforts and maximize success? Sometimes that question is: How can we get things done?

For example, consider some of our new innovative programs – like Professor Lisa Miller’s first-of-its-kind Summer Intensive Master’s Program in General Psychology, with a Spirituality Mind Body Concentration, which already has garnered tremendous interest; the new Global Competence Certificate Program, led by Professor Bill Gaudelli, which is the first graduate-level certificate program in global competence education for U.S. school teachers and leaders. Professor Ryan Baker taught a MOOC last year and he has worked with colleagues to design a master’s degree in data analytics. And we have the new Sexuality, Women & Gender initiative led by Professors Melanie Brewster, Aurelie Athan, and Riddhi Sandil. Given the positive response to these ideas, we must look at how we can seize more opportunities to translate the marvelous ideas and visions of our faculty into programs that advance TC’s global leadership across the fields we embody.    

This year, we will encourage the TC community to think strategically about how we can create and develop more innovative programs, better serve our students, and conduct our business with greater effectiveness, productivity, and success. There is much hard work ahead, but the hope is our efforts will bear fruit and help us create a more robust College in every way.    

On the program side, we’ve asked Vice Provost Bill Baldwin to lead the effort to improve our capacity to support faculty program initiatives, to streamline the often complex and time-consuming approval processes within the College and externally. We have a number of innovative new degree and certificate programs awaiting State approval, and many more in the pipeline.  Bill is working with dozens of faculty members on ways to support further new program development.

Today, I lunched with John King, New York State Education Commissioner, and we talked about how to encourage swift action on our programs awaiting approval.

There’s a particular interest in certificate programs. There are myriad possibilities to better serve thousands of TC alumni and other professionals throughout their careers with professional development opportunities. Some faculty are already engaged in this work, while many more have promising ideas they are eager to develop and offer to alumni. We’ve long felt a moral obligation to serve our alumni – to help them upgrade their knowledge and skills. Now technology may enable much greater and more fruitful focus – particularly on post-M.A. professionals.     

To strengthen our technology expertise and capacity, we brought on board last month a new Chief Information Officer for the College, Naveed Husain. He comes to us from Queens College, where he established an impressive record of success over 10 years to bring major technology innovations and upgrades across Queens College. Naveed also has worked as a U.N. peacekeeper – an experience that might come in handy at TC.

The Board of Trustees has made an investment in building support for enhanced digital offerings. We’re currently conducting a national search for a newly created position: Vice Provost for Digital Learning. This individual, who will report to the Provost, will provide expertise and guidance on strategic direction and use of technology to enhance our practices and broaden our offerings – both non-credit – aimed primarily at the post-M.A. market I described – and for-credit online courses and degrees.

Other pieces of the picture also must take shape. Thanks to a recommendation from the Faculty Subcommittee on Finance, Facilities, and Support Services, we will invest in marketing and support for faculty to design new efforts. The Committee also has spearheaded several subgroups focusing on possibilities for and obstacles to innovation, including incentives for faculty to engage in new programs. Our new registration system will include non-credit as well as for-credit registrants in the same system. A new Intellectual Property Policy making its way through the faculty and Trustees. It encourages incentives for new patentable or licensable products, such as games or software. And we hope EdLab can take on a big role in helping faculty, staff, students, and alumni refine products that could be marketed.

We’re in the process of creating a new Board of Trustees Committee on strategic innovation that will study and make recommendations on our institutional needs and goals across all these areas.

Strategic innovation at TC won’t happen overnight. But we’re determined to make substantial progress in the year ahead. That will take the help and expertise of everyone at TC – and we need your thoughtful feedback, as we develop and implement policies and practices and adapt new technologies. We have so many diverse constituencies at the College who have a great deal to contribute to this process. That’s why it’s so critical that we rely on TC’s structure of representative governance to facilitate participation in these efforts.

We’ve talked a great deal about shared governance over the years – and personally I’m very pleased and very grateful with the progress we’ve all made to assure that voices are heard, input is real and concerns met – although we must always strive to improve. But we also depend on representative governance. I encourage everyone to share ideas and concerns with your respective representatives – we have various governance groups, committees and networks that are charged with representing students, faculty, professional staff, administrative staff, and union members. The job of your representatives is to ensure your voices are heard and your views part of the discussion. I look forward to working with representatives of all stakeholders at TC to, once again, renew our historic legacy, and make us now the most innovative graduate school of education in the world.  

Our work on innovation – and all our plans for the years ahead – are supported by our campaign: Where the Future Comes First: The Campaign for Teachers College. Let me give you an update on the campaign and how it is supporting TC’s people and priorities.

We’ve made significant progress toward our goal of $300 million since the campaign launch last November. As of October 1st, we have raised more than $180 million toward our funding priorities: scholarships and fellowships, faculty support and programs and partnerships, renewing our campus and technology, and the TC Fund and other unrestricted giving. Thank you to all who have been working so hard on this effort.   

Financial support for our students is our number-one funding priority for the campaign – it’s so important that, since the launch of the campaign, we increased the goal for financial aid to $124 million. Our generous alumni, faculty, trustees and friends are responding with giving as never before. Scholarship giving for fiscal year 2014 stood at $12.4 million, which was a 35 percent jump over last year’s final total of $9.2 million.

In 2014, we introduced two new scholarships that have provided outstanding support to incoming students. The first was the introduction of new support for students from Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU’s) who are pursuing teacher education fields. We offered full funding to three incoming master’s students.

A second is an $18,000 scholarship to an incoming master’s student who wishes to pursue work on LGBTQ issues. Collaborating with the Tyler Clementi Foundation, we offered this new scholarship to a master’s student in Adult Learning & Leadership.

For continuing students, this year we introduced two new scholarship programs: the 125th Anniversary Scholarship, which was created with money raised at our Gala last November, and the Doctoral Dissertation Grant Scholarships.

Overall, in the last six years, our institutional scholarship and financial aid budget has increased by almost 80 percent. In the last year alone, our institutional scholarship and financial aid budget increased by almost 20 percent.  That means more students than ever before are receiving financial support from TC.

We’re making progress in recruiting new, fully-funded doctoral students to the College each year. This year, 45 percent of our entering cohort of new full-time doctoral students received full funding. This is up from 15 percent in previous years – a significant jump. And, when we offer those packages, our yield is high.

For this year’s entering class, our yield of fully funded doctoral students was 85 percent, which indicates the importance of offering competitive packages to attract the best students. While all these indicators are promising, we have far to go toward funding our students in line with our peer institutions.

Recently I’ve heard and read many appreciative comments from students and faculty – and from some families – about the increased support for students. Because of this support, we are able to attract and retain the best students to TC – and help them to graduate without the crushing burden of debt. We’re so excited about this next generation of TC people who – like generations before them – are determined to change the world.  

I always love to share the good news about our students. As we do every fall, we welcomed a new class to TC. They number 1,844, and they are immensely talented. Our new students range in age from 20 to 64, and they come to TC from every corner of the country and from around the world. This year, 23 percent of incoming students are from outside the U.S. – that’s an all-time high, coming from 67 different countries. It is especially noteworthy that 17 nations new to the College are represented in this entering class – they truly are a global group.

Overall, our students continue to get more diverse in every way. This year, the proportion of U.S. citizens enrolled at the College who self-identify as students of color is more than 40 percent.

Our commitment to diversity is nationally recognized, and certainly one of TC’s distinctive legacies. In the 2014 Almanac of Higher Education, we have been ranked sixth among U.S. universities in granting the most doctoral degrees to black students. We’re the only private college in the top 10, and we are a much smaller institution than the other highly ranked schools like the University of Michigan. While we are proud of our recognition, our work is far from done. We’re striving to be a leader across all the diverse groups represented in these rankings.

In regard to faculty, we would be here all day talking about their accomplishments in research, practice and policy, and the innovative programs they create. Very often these new efforts are externally funded.

It’s fantastic that in a time of fiscal constraint across the board, our faculty research funding has been on the rise – from $34.4 million in Fiscal Year ‘07 to about 41 million in Fiscal Year ‘13. Over that time, we’ve seen a nearly 50 percent increase in funding from federal sources, which is significant, given cuts in federal spending.

We’ve had recent great news in that regard. Our teacher preparation program TR@TC2 recently won a $7.5 million federal grant from the U.S. Department of Education’s New Teacher Quality Partnership. TR@TC2 is modeled after the medical residency. The grant will be used to recruit, train and support teachers in the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) disciplines.

Congratulations to program director and Vice Dean for Teacher Education Lin Goodwin and her colleagues for this wonderful achievement! 

This summer, Tom Bailey was at the White House with Education Secretary Arne Duncan and other administration officials to announce the launch of TC’s new Center for the Analysis of Postsecondary Readiness. The new center is being launched with a five-year $9.9 million federal grant, which is incredibly exciting. Tom, as you know, is the George and Abby O’Neill Professor of Economics and Education, and he leads our nationally recognized Community College Research Center. 

The Dean Hope Center and the Department of Counseling and Clinical Psychology have received a prestigious grant from the federal Health Resources & Services Administration. The grant will provide stipends for six doctoral students for training in integrated psychology/health care for underserved populations.

TC is one of 40 institutions in the country to receive the three-year grant, which provides an almost $200,000 per year. This is critical and urgent work as the Affordable Care Act is changing the way health care is organized and delivered around the country. Congratulations to Dean Hope Center Director Dinelia Rosa, as well as Lisa Miller, Professor of Clinical Psychology, and Marie Miville, Professor of Counseling Psychology!  

Our National Center for Restructuring Education, Schools & Teaching won a $12 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education for its STEM Early College Expansion Partnership. The partnership provides high-quality professional development to teachers in early college programs in STEM fields who work with high-need students.

Of course, no new academic year is complete without the arrival of talented and promising new faculty members. This fall, we greeted nine new faculty members and a postdoctoral research fellow. They are a distinguished group of scholars who are diverse in their backgrounds and research interests. Their fields range from early childhood education to learning sciences; and from speech pathology to bilingual/bicultural education. I encourage you to peruse our new faculty gallery on the TC homepage to learn more about these impressive scholars.

They join an already incredibly strong faculty – in fact, our faculty are the best of any graduate school of education in the world. I think that’s something we can all agree on.

Of our current faculty, more than one-third have been recruited over the last seven years – which indicates that we are continuing to attract world-class scholars to TC and renew our intellectual legacy each year.

The diversity of our entire faculty has been increasing as well. Today, 24 percent of faculty members are people of color, more than half of whom have been hired since 2007.

TC’s external reach continues to grow and flourish. Our REACH partnership continues to help serve the academic, social and health needs of students in six public schools in Harlem. REACH stands for Raising Educational Achievement Coalition of Harlem, and it is a signature initiative of our Office of School and Community Partnerships, led by Associate VP Nancy Streim. If you used a Chase ATM in the last month you may have noticed a message about the bank’s support for REACH through its $1 million donation. 

We’re especially thrilled with the progress being made by students at our partnership school: the Teachers College Community School. The good news is spreading like wildfire. TCCS saw more applications for its kindergarten seats this year than any other school in Districts 5 or 6, with 469 students vying for 50 spots. This summer, we joined Principal Jeanene Worrell-Breeden and an array of New York City officials to officially open a new city-funded playground at the school this summer.

Our international reach remains an important part of our work. We continue to collaborate with the Columbia Global Centers, with the goal of having projects with all eight centers. Much of TC’s global engagement focuses on capacity-building and helping nations and communities develop and retain their own expertise.

One example is the work being done in Brazil by Brian Perkins, Director of TC’s Urban Education Leaders Program. He serves as a consultant to the municipal government of Rio de Janeiro to help build leadership capacity in the schools. He teamed with two TC doctoral graduates to help Rio’s education department create a leadership development academy – and 20 principals just completed the program.  

This summer, Professor Helena Verdeli, from Psychology, worked with Syrian refugees in Jordan to explore the potential of psychotherapy to ease depression in children and adults in war-torn regions of the world. Her work is tremendously important right now when so there is so much psychological trauma as a result of armed conflicts, poverty, and disease. 

As we enable and support strategic innovation, we will continue to identify new possibilities for global collaborations and seek opportunities to engage in international work.

I look forward each year at the State of the College to our recognition of the Elaine Brantley award-winners. We will honor this year’s winners shortly. But I want to take a moment to acknowledge them: Aklilu Ghidey, who works in the Business Services Center; and James Kearney and Dennis Chambers from the Office of Public Safety. As many of you know, Dennis is a TC alumnus who has earned two master’s degrees and an Ed.D.

It’s no accident that two members of our Public Safety staff are represented this year. I know I speak for everyone here when I say how much their work is valued and appreciated. They keep us safe every day. But they also are some of TC’s best ambassadors. They are the first people new and prospective students meet when they come to campus. They help thousands of visitors each year navigate our sometimes confusing campus and get to their destinations. When alumni return to campus, they often take a moment to catch up with public safety officers who were such an important part of their daily lives here.

They know every nook and cranny of this campus and are ever-alert to the surroundings. So it’s no surprise that our public safety officers made an incredible find recently – a wallet that was lost by a TC student in Bancroft Hall 33 years ago! Alumna Jennifer Eyges was reunited with her wallet – and her ID from 1981 – when she visited campus to thank them. Isn’t that an amazing story?

So let’s take this opportunity to show our appreciation for our Public Safety Officers. Thank you for everything you do for TC!

Finally, I want to say a few words about the loss this year of TC icons: Maxine Greene, George Bond, and, just recently, Jack Mezirow. On Monday afternoon in this auditorium we held a memorial event for Maxine that was both moving and joyous. She touched so many lives and so many generations of students!

We will celebrate the life and legacy of George Bond on October 28. I encourage you to attend this event. I guarantee you will be inspired by the stories of his groundbreaking work and his life-changing impact on students and colleagues. 

We are just beginning to plan a memorial for Jack and welcome suggestions on how to celebrate him. 

We are so fortunate to have had luminaries like these, whose influence will endure and help light the road ahead for our College. Let us be inspired by their work and their dedication to our College as we go forward, together, this year to build an even stronger TC." - President Susan Fuhrman

 


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