Jan 28th, 2020 @ 2:07 pm | Author: Alan D. LaFave, D.M.A.
Greetings from Valley City State University!
Campus is buzzing with excitement with the return of students, and spring semester classes and activities are now in full swing. As much as I know students enjoy the break between semesters, I know they’re glad to be back on campus, and we enjoy having them here as they continue their paths toward graduation.
I’ve been traveling to visit our high school dual-credit partners in the area over the past month. (At these schools, high school students take special courses and earn both high school and college credits at the same time.) Accompanied by James Boe, dean of graduate studies and extended learning, and Bridget Blunck, admissions counselor, I’ve visited Valley City High School, Davies High School, Sheyenne High School, Oak Grove High School, West Fargo High School, Barnes County North High School, Central Cass High School, and Northern Cass High School. It’s exciting to see so many high school students taking advantage of this program to help jump-start their university education.
A few of us have also been traveling and making connections with school districts in regard to a new partnership program called the Rural Partner School Benefit Program. Designed to create powerful university/school district partnerships, the program promotes collaboration between VCSU and partner schools with a focus on student learning and educator preparation. This will help meet the demand for highly qualified teachers in rural schools at the elementary, middle and high school levels; support practicing educators and our teacher preparation programs; and improve professional learning for district and university faculty and teacher candidates. We are thrilled to announce that Valley City Public Schools and Lisbon Public Schools are our first two partners in this initiative.
On campus, we kicked off the first week of classes with an open faculty/staff forum in Vangstad Auditorium January 16. Topics for the forum included enrollment, budget, facility improvements, funding, and student support. We also used this time to reflect on successes from the past year and plans for moving forward. We continue to invest in facilities and programs that will help our students succeed, and during the fall semester, we conducted a feasibility study to help us identify areas of need. We will continue these efforts this semester to explore ways and means to address our critical needs as we move forward.
Along with a few others from the VCSU Foundation, I’ll be traveling to Arizona for alumni gatherings at the end of month. There we’ll share similar VCSU information and messages; I’ll fill you in on those events when I return.