Anderson University recently announced several changes and modifications to the academic structure that will take place or begin to unfold during the 2012-13 academic year. The changes are a part of the ongoing revitalization efforts outlined in the university’s Strategic Plan that are intended to strengthen the academic program.
”Anderson University is boldly moving forward in our efforts to address the changing landscape of educational needs in Indiana and beyond,” said Dr. Marie Morris, provost for Anderson University. “As a result, the university will engage new markets with programs that we believe are consistent with our mission to ‘educate for a life of faith and service’ and our commitment to educating students for a life of impact. We are also looking at areas where we can gain improved synergy through restructuring.”
Beginning with the 2012-13 academic year, the Anderson University School of Music will be known as the School of Music, Theatre, and Dance. Along with this name change, a new major in musical theatre will also be introduced. With the school’s new name and new major, the relationships between the programs will continue to grow stronger. The 80-hour major has been carefully planned by faculty members from all three programs. The new major will give prospective students, especially those who are not sure if they should do music, theatre, or dance, another option to consider. Now, they have the choice of studying all three in a single major.
“Since our performing arts overlap in several different ways with facilities, equipment, and especially students, it has called for coordination among departments,” said Dr. Jeffrey Wright, dean of the College of the Arts and co-chair of the School of Music. “It has become a natural evolution of relationships, and the arts need to be housed together under one name.”
The School of Education at Anderson University has recently restructured its academic offerings for the 2012-13 academic year. The School of Education will discontinue the Master of Education degree program this fall. The re-alignment will allow the School of Education to provide more focused attention to the undergraduate program, and also equip the School of Education to take full advantage of changes with teacher education in Indiana. The decision to discontinue the M.Ed. program will not impact current students enrolled in that program.
“The School of Education has been contemplating for some time whether to continue the M.Ed. program given changes in the marketplace for programs of this nature,” said Dr. Janice Fulkerson, dean of the School of Education. “We are excited about the new opportunities that are now available and able to be explored through this decision as it will allow us to dream big and strategically position the School of Education for the future.”
Anderson University is making preparations to launch a Bachelor of Science in Engineering degree. After extensive review, the university is working with the Higher Learning Commission change process in preparations to recruit and accept students for the new degree program for fall of the 2013-14 academic year. The focus of the Bachelor of Science in Engineering will not be to simply prepare students for technical careers, but to serve the church and society and to affect change in communities and around the world. The program is being designed to achieve accreditation by the Accrediting Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET).
Anderson University will be one of only a few schools in the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU) nationwide and in Indiana to offer an engineering degree. The new degree program will introduce five new majors within the university academic catalog. New majors within the Bachelor of Science in Engineering degree will include: civil engineering, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, computer engineering, and a complementary major in chemical engineering.
During the 2012-13 academic year, Anderson University will begin a transition to a new model for adult studies. Plans are underway to replace the current organizational leadership (ORGL) major with an adult studies bachelor’s degree program that will be more general in nature. The new major will be designed for maximum flexibility so it can accommodate non-traditional students at AU, students who already have more than 60 credit hours and wish to complete a baccalaureate degree, or adult students desiring a degree in a more general area of study. It is expected that the transition to this new major will be completed by fall of 2013.
“The landscape for adult degree completion programs in our area has drastically changed since the university began offering an adult studies program more than 20 years ago,” said Morris. “We believe that this new structure will position the university well for the future and enable us to continue to serve the needs of adult learners.”
The Anderson University Falls School of Business will introduce three new concentrations starting in the fall of 2012. The new concentrations in sport marketing, event planning, and forensic accounting further enhance the diverse academic programs offered by the school.
“These concentrations build off of strong majors giving students expanded opportunities to serve in exciting and fulfilling careers,” said Dr. Michael Wiese, professor of marketing and director of undergraduate studies. “The Anderson University Falls School of Business continues to grow in size and reputation as a leader in Christ-centered business education.”
Additional “boldly moving forward” strategies will be forthcoming. “These are exciting times at Anderson University,” said Morris. “I, for one, am grateful for the visionary leadership of President Edwards in his call for revitalization — a call that has captured the imagination of the stellar faculty at AU who have a passion for educating head, heart, and hands. We are on the move.”
Anderson University is a private Christian university of 2,600 undergraduate and graduate students in central Indiana. Anderson University continues to be recognized as one of America's top colleges by U.S. News and World Report, The Princeton Review, and Forbes. Established in 1917 by the Church of God, Anderson University offers more than 65 undergraduate majors and graduate programs in business, music, nursing, and theology.