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The University of Vermont

Office of the Provost


January 19, 2010

Dear Faculty, Staff and Students:

In September, 2009, Provost Knodell charged a Work Group to develop a plan for General Education to help ensure the University achieves its undergraduate educational mission by providing all students with foundations in literacy, communication skills, critical thinking, humanistic and scientific inquiry, global citizenship and an appreciation of different cultures. 

We are pleased to announce our report and related materials are now posted on the Gen Ed website (General Education at UVM).  The report, entitled Plan for a General Education System at UVM, presents a blueprint for General Education that is founded on desired attributes for graduates, and which incorporates national standards and best practices as well as the signature areas that make UVM unique.  It also proposes a phased implementation plan and next steps for making General Education a reality at UVM.  The plan has been informed through our research, consultations and open, iterative communications with the campus community.  This represents our good faith effort to develop a system for General Education that is true to our collective ideals and aspirations for our students.  We hope you will read the documents and provide us with your constructive criticisms and ideas.  You can write to us at [log in to unmask]. 

During the Spring 2010 semester a proposal to approve the principles of General Education will come before the Faculty Senate.  In addition, the faculty members of the Work Group will work with the Associate Deans, the Curriculum Committees of each school and college and other groups as needed to begin developing a detailed proposal for phase I of implementation.  Separate proposals for the subsequent phases of implementation will be developed later.  All of the proposals will undergo full review. 

The members of the General Education Work Group:

Eileen Cichoski Kelly (faculty, College of Medicine)
Bernard  Cole (Interim Dean, College of Engineering and Mathematical Sciences)
Deborah Ellis (faculty, College of Arts and Sciences)
Ricardo Johnson (faculty, College of Education and Social Services)
Bryce Jones (President, Student Government Association)
Eleanor Miller (Dean, College of Arts and Sciences)
Deborah O’Rourke, (faculty, College of Nursing and Health Sciences)
Catherine Paris (faculty, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences)
Brian Reed (Associate Provost for Curricular Affairs; Work Group Chair)
Abu Rizvi (Dean, Honors College)
Tom Rogers (faculty, College of Engineering and Mathematical Sciences)
Mara Saule (Dean of Libraries and Learning Resources)
Mary Watzin (Dean, Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources)
Marie Waterworth (Staff Assistant)
Martha (Marti) Woodman (faculty, School of Business Administration)