Edible design

Edible art project

Students in associate professor Mimi Wagner and assistant professor Julie Stevens' landscape architecture classes (LA 282 and LA 222) displayed their edible projects in the College of Design last week. The models, which integrated edible art and technical understanding of soil concepts, were constructed on 10-inch squares. Students presented their models for peer critique. A photo gallery of this semester's projects is available on the ISU Facebook page. Photo by Erin Rosacker.

Wickert unveils provost's office realignment plan

Senior vice president and provost Jonathan Wickert has announced a plan to better align responsibilities with objectives in the academic division, include more faculty members in its leadership and maintain a culture of efficiency and effectiveness.

In a recent memo, Wickert said the plan reflects recent assessments of the office by his leadership team, recommendations from a Faculty Senate review, input from various campus groups and individuals, and benchmarking of similar offices around the country.

"Our staff does a great job, and I have been very impressed with both the quality and volume of their work," he said. "These changes will enable us to be more data-driven in making decisions and in assessing how effective policies actually are in meeting their stated goals."

Position changes

Four vacant positions have been eliminated. Two others will be eliminated by the end of the year, due to a retirement and changes in workload. Three newly defined positions are:

  • Program manager for budget and planning, who will assist with capital planning and budget development for the division of academic affairs
  • Academic data analyst, who will help inform decision making and improve the quality of academic programs
  • Business analyst, who will lead policy and academic process effectiveness efforts, including analysis of workflow, business processes and faculty performance and satisfaction                    

Wickert said recruitment is under way for the program manager, and he hopes to fill all three positions by the start of the 2013-14 academic year. The positions align with the division's budget and planning process, including the three-year operating plans, Wickert said in the memo.

Part-time faculty fellows

Wickert will provide leadership opportunities and management experience to several part-time faculty fellows. The fellows will work in the provost's office on faculty-related issues, such as orientation and mentoring, diversity and inclusion, and department chair management resources and training. A call for applications will be announced soon.

Staffing changes

  • Karen Zunkel will assume full-time responsibility for student outcomes assessment, beginning March 1. She previously had selected responsibilities with Iowa State's undergraduate programs, both for the academic division and the Board of Regents, while also serving as manager of the Program for Women in Science and Engineering (PWSE). An external search will be conducted to fill the PWSE post.
  • John Schuh, distinguished professor emeritus in the School of Education, will direct the Emerging Leaders Academy. Sponsored by the provost's office, the academy provides a series of monthly sessions to develop leadership skills of selected faculty and professional and scientific staff.

Title changes

The following title changes are intended to more accurately reflect staff duties:

  • Dawn Bratsch-Prince to associate provost for faculty
  • Ellen Rasmussen to associate vice president for academic planning and resources

Reporting changes

Beginning July 1:

  • The Center for Excellence in Learning and Teaching will provide more faculty career development programming and support, including mentoring for new faculty; and integrate faculty professional development more broadly across the division. CELT will report to Bratsch-Prince.
  • Institutional Research will increase its business analytics support for budget development, multiyear planning, divisional key performance indicators and use of Academic Analytics. The unit will report to Rasmussen.
  • The University Lectures program will report to communications director Rob Schweers.

Council consolidates representation areas

A motion to update the Professional and Scientific Council's representation areas was approved at the group's Feb. 14 meeting. The changes do not affect the number of council positions, but do narrow the number of representation areas from six to four that follow the institution's administrative structure (academic affairs, business and finance, president's office and student affairs).

Two areas -- Extension/outreach and a combined grouping of the Institute for Physical Research and Technology (IPRT) and U.S. Department of Energy's Ames Laboratory -- were folded into academic affairs. A proposal to separate the IPRT and Ames Lab representation group initiated the council's discussion of realignment in November.

Using current employee numbers, the academic affairs area provides 26 of the council's 36 total members. The new structure designates 12 at-large representatives and one representative each from 14 areas under the academic affairs umbrella, including:

  • Research and Economic Development
  • Extension and Outreach
  • Library
  • Information Technology Services
  • College of Agriculture and Life Sciences
  • College of Business
  • College of Design
  • College of Engineering
  • College of Human Sciences
  • College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
  • College of Veterinary Medicine
  • Graduate College
  • Ames Lab
  • Office of the Senior Vice President and Provost

If one of the 14 areas fails to provide a candidate for its designated position, an at-large representative would be assigned.

The motion, passed with a 31-5 margin, will go into effect in fiscal year 2014.

Other business

  • Brenda Behling, director of academic policy and personnel, updated council members on restructuring plans in the provost's office, effective July 1. She also said a consultant will assess the wide variety of diversity efforts on campus and help the administration develop an institution-wide structure to facilitate inclusiveness.
  • Amy Tehan, program coordinator in the Ames Lab, was elected as the council's next president-elect in a two-person race. Dick Pfarrer, hall coordinator in the residence department, was the other candidate.
  • Senior vice president and provost Jonathan Wickert will present CYtation awards to 2012 winners at a Feb. 26 ceremony (noon-1 p.m., MU Campanile Room).

Drop-ins welcome at sustainability symposium

The Memorial Union will be "sustainability central" Monday evening and Tuesday morning as members of the university community look for ways to continue to build a greener Iowa State University.

Symposium on Sustainability logo

The Symposium on Sustainability is a free event, designed to update faculty, staff and students on the university's green activities and inspire them to greater efforts, said Merry Rankin, director of sustainability.

"Those who can't attend the entire symposium are welcome to drop in for selected sessions," Rankin said.

She encouraged all symposium goers to register, whether they intend to attend all or part of the symposium, so that planners can provide adequate refreshments and supplies. Register online by 5 p.m. Feb. 22.

The symposium will feature presentations by a national expert on water, corporate leaders, and university researchers, instructors and students involved in green projects.

Register now for 14th annual ISCORE on March 1

A plethora of topics related to race and ethnicity take center stage at the 14th annual Iowa State Conference on Race and Ethnicity (ISCORE) March 1 (8 a.m.-5 p.m., Memorial Union). All faculty, staff and students are invited to attend this free conference. Registration is required.

ISCORE is a comprehensive forum on issues of race and ethnicity at Iowa State and beyond. President Steven Leath and Mary Jo Gonzales, associate dean of students, will kick off the day's events with opening remarks at 9 a.m. (MU Sun Room). 

Beginning at 10 a.m., students, staff and faculty will lead two sets of concurrent sessions followed by a luncheon keynote address by Nancy "Rusty" Barceló, president of Northern New Mexico College, Espanola. The afternoon features two sets of concurrent sessions beginning at 2:10 p.m. and running through 4 p.m. A reception follows the afternoon sessions.

Below is a schedule of the ISCORE seminars:

10-10:50 a.m.

  • The Changing Faces of Iowa (Campanile Room)
  • The Asian F: They Told Me I Could Go Anywhere … (Cardinal Room)
  • Open Discussion on How a Central, Well-funded Diversity-focused Office Might Help at ISU (Gallery)
  • Graduating Underrepresented Students in STEM: The IINSPIRE LSAMP Project (Oak Room)
  • Queer People of Color: A Home for Intersecting Identities (Gold Room)

11-11:50 a.m.

  • Sustaining Diversity: Appreciating the Needs of International Students (Campanile Room)
  • Increasing African-American Leadership Development: A Peer-Mentorship Model (Cardinal Room)
  • Former Student-Athletes of Color Experiences at Iowa State (Gallery)
  • Nine Digits of Freedom: Analyzing Inherent Privileges that Come from Being a U.S. Citizen (Oak Room)
  • "-isms" Explored Through the Eyes of Carver Students (Great Hall)

2:10-3 p.m.

  • Dumb Things We Need to Stop Saying and Other Practical Steps to Increase Our Effectiveness Around Diversity (Campanile Room)
  • Thanksgiving … What Are We Really Thankful For? The Misconstrued History of Native Americans (Cardinal Room)
  • Stop Actin' So Black! (Gallery)
  • Race and Ethnicity … as Deaf Identity? (Oak Room)
  • Where Are All Our Men of Color? Personal Experiences of Men of Color at ISU (Gold Room)
  • "-isms" Explored Through the Eyes of Carver Students (Great Hall)

3:10-4 p.m.

  • Ronald E. McNair Scholars Showcase (Campanile Room)
  • What Are You? (Cardinal Room)
  • From Cultivating Ambassadors to Serving as Mentors: A Three-year Review of the Graduate Student of Color Experience at Iowa State (Gallery)
  • Latino Cultural Centers at PWIs (predominately white institutions): What Can We Learn? (Oak Room)
  • Experiencing NCORE (National Conference on Race and Ethnicity) as Faculty/Staff: A Roundtable Discussion (Gold Room)

Championship performance

Christina Hillman

Big 12 Conference track and field teams are racing the winter storm to Ames, where the league's indoor championships are being held Feb. 22-23 on the Harry Hoak Track in the Lied Center. Events begin at 10 a.m. Friday and 11 a.m. Saturday; a complete schedule is available online. Single-day admission is $7 for adults, $3 for youth; two-day passes are $10 and $5. Pictured: Sophomore Christina Hillman, an all-conference performer at last year's meet, will compete in the weight throw and shot put. The ISU women's team tied for fourth, while the men finished ninth in 2012. Photo courtesy of Iowa State Athletics Communications.