Department of Academic Affairs Newsletter

USU Faculty Newsletter Volume 4, February 2015

WASC Update: Please remember to mark your calendars for April 7-9. The WASC team led by Dr. Anna DiStefano (Fielding Graduate University) will be onsite at United States University. The visit – an absolutely seminal one for USU, as you know, will involve a series of meetings – none more important than with you, our faculty. A preliminary calendar will be developed sometime in early or middle March. Please make every possible effort to attend – either virtually in person – the faculty focused meetings scheduled with the WASC visiting team members. I will publish dates and times as soon as these have been confirmed.

Faculty Senate Update: Highlights of the February 10 meeting included: external validation of online teaching efficacy as a pilot program funded by the Office of the Provost in 2015 – Dr. Milla, in her capacity as Chair of the Professional Development Committee will facilitate the university’s participation in an online instructional beta test; the faculty will be asked to validate its support of the newly proposed strategic plan via online survey; likewise, the Provost indicated that the faculty will be asked to support the academic plan in the same online survey; finally, Dr. Stargardter asked the faculty to consider the “Meaning of a United States University Degree,” by considering the skills preferred by employers as provided by the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE), embedded within the strategic plan.

The First Annual Assessment Summit will be held on Wednesday, March 11 from 11:00 to 1:00. Its evaluative focus will be reviewing progress made towards goals outlined in the 2014-2015 strategic plan. Topics to be covered include: academic quality (program review, curricular maps, assessment results, course evaluations, and institutional research capacity), financial stability (program viability and enrollment trends), and accessibility (LMS platform, lead management software, and extended education). Please join us, if your schedule will permit.

Congratulations to two of our adjunct colleagues for receiving “Fund for Innovation” awards to support teaching and research: Drs. Trajkovski (for presentation of his research on the theory of learning to the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence) and Hyatt (to support his upcoming presentation at the American Society for Bioethics and Humanities). Please note that the Professional Development Committee of Faculty Senate will continue to solicit nominations at United States University remains committed to supporting research projects of our faculty community.

Please join me in welcoming Dr. Mirjana Zivkovic to the core faculty of the College of Arts and Sciences. Dr. Zivkovic will be working primarily with the Master of Science in Health Science program. She comes to USU after a long and distinguished career at the University of Belgrade. She has also taught at San Diego State University, National University and Grossmont College. In addition to her publications in a variety of peer reviewed journals, Dr. Zivkovic has, among her many accomplishments, worked with the World Health Organization. In conjunction with the California Children’s Hospital and Health Center, she oversaw and facilitated quality improvement initiatives including access to care, patient access workload monitoring, and reimbursement for the Developmental Evaluation Clinic. Congratulations to our colleague, Dr. Cynthia Leaver who was selected from over 100 applicants to attend the Leadership Program in Integrative Health Care at Duke University. This one year online program is designed to create a new type of leader anticipating the future of medical care—leaders who can transform practice and improve the health of the nation by fostering a personalized approach to comprehensive medical care. Dr. Leaver plans to share the highlights of the program with faculty and students as the College of Nursing develops new curriculum and educates future nurse leaders.

Thank you again to all of you for the work you do on behalf of our students and university. As always, my door and email ( are always open to you.

Dr. Steven Stargardter

Provost and Chief Academic Officer

Newsletter Archives

USU Faculty Newsletter Volume 1, February 2014

USU Faculty Newsletter Volume 2, June 2014 

USU Faculty Newsletter Volume 3, October 2014

USU Faculty Newsletter Volume 4, February 2015