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Roudebush Hall
Roudebush Hall, home of Miami's administrative offices

Annual Address 2012

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David C. Hodge
September 6, 2012

How Have We Done?

In 2008, we approved five major goals and 41 sub-goals. Some of these goals had specific measures attached to them, most did not. We don't have the time today to explore our progress on all of these goals, so I will offer a few highlights for some of the more visible or critical goals.

The first goal is to "Make the Miami undergraduate experience among the very best in the nation." The goal is first and foremost about academics, especially curriculum reform. The Top 25 initiative, in particular, has fundamentally changed how we view our approach to education. With its focus on active, engaged learning and discovery, students report that they spend more time on higher order activities and our research shows that their critical thinking skills have improved. Faculty also report that students collaborate better, take more risks, and yes, even spend more time on their classwork!

We continue to be at the forefront of other significant curricular reforms:

  • Miami is one of only 32 universities chosen by AAC&U in the Shared Futures Initiative that is defining what it means to be prepared for a global century.
  • Miami is one of a handful of universities chosen for a process of continuous evaluation for accreditation. The focus on outcomes and feedback is vital to improving student success.
  • We are undertaking a full review and revision of the Miami Plan, once again strengthening our liberal education foundations.

We have energetically focused on increasing those high impact experiences that have been shown to make the most difference in student success:

  • The Howe Writing Center has become a focal point for integrating writing excellence throughout the curriculum, including the new requirement in Arts and Science.
  • We have increased study abroad on the Oxford campus from 36% to 47%.
  • We have increased the percentage of students with a research experience with faculty or staff from 9.2 to 11.8, significant progress although a bit short of our 15% goal.
  • The proportion of seniors reporting that they have had a service learning course has gone from 71 to 76%.
  • The proportion of seniors who have had an internship dropped slightly between 2007 and 2011 from 70 to 67 percent, although the number of internships available to students through the Career Services Office has increased by 101 percent in the past two years.
  • Between 2009 and 2011, the number of students involved in formal leadership programs increased 59%. The launch of the SEAS-Lockheed Martin Leadership Institute and the creation of the Leadership Collaborative are two recent initiatives that merit special attention.

We have made being a more diverse and more inclusive university a priority, recognizing that we cannot be among the very best universities without those qualities. Among the changes and accomplishments we have achieved are:

  • Increasing the proportion of multi-cultural students from 8.5% to 11.1%, with this year's first-year class at 12.6%.
  • Increasing the proportion of first-year international students from 1% to 4.8%.
  • The proportion of students reporting that their Miami experience contributed to a better understanding of people of other racial/ethnic backgrounds increased from 75% to 84%.
  • This past spring we celebrated 40 years of connecting to the Miami Tribe, 20 years of Miami Tribe students on campus, and 10 years of the Myaamia project.

The one critical measure that has proven most challenging to our academic ambitions is our goal to raise our six-year graduation rate from 81 to 85%. Even though there is an obvious delay between our actions and changes in that number, our annual retention rates would suggest that we have not made progress. In my view, this is one of those "signature" measures that reflect the sum effects of our collective efforts. Part of the challenge is developing the sense of urgency that is needed to advance. It is easy to be satisfied with our high ranking and to assume that we are doing well. This is one of those situations where "good is the enemy of great." We must not let our success limit our aspirations to be great. With our overwhelming emphasis on student success, we need a true sense of urgency to improve the academic success of our students.

For us to move the needle will require an "all hands on deck" attitude, much like we have achieved in our recruiting efforts. We must be relentless in our commitment to understanding what works in providing the mix of challenge and support that will encourage even more of our students to succeed. The Steering Committee for Retention and Graduation has created lists of best practices that target critical aspects of student experience. Among their suggestions are:

  • Value graduation as a fundamental, achievable goal for all students.
  • Provide strong and consistent academic advising, including interventions with selected populations.
  • Encourage faculty and staff efforts to get to know students personally and make them feel welcome.
  • Stress the importance for students to discover and connect with people, programs and activities.
  • Integrate personal and career goals through engaged, experiential learning.

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Locations
Luxembourg
West Chester
Middletown
Hamilton
Oxford
  • Luxembourg
    Luxembourg

    John E. Dolibois European Center, Luxembourg

    One of Miami's oldest continuous study abroad programs, the Miami University John E. Dolibois Center (MUDEC) in Luxembourg offers students the opportunity to enroll in Miami classes taught by European-based and Ohio-based Miami faculty. Students enjoy a unique combination of first-class academics, engagement in the local community, and various faculty-guided and independent travel opportunities.

    Contact and emergency information for the Luxembourg Campus. Starting with general contact info on the left; additional contact and emergency information on the right.

    Château de Differdange
    1, Impasse du Château
    L-4524 Differdange
    Grand Duchy of Luxembourg
    luxembourg@MiamiOH.edu
    MiamiOH.edu/luxembourg

    217-222 MacMillan Hall
    531 E. Spring Street
    Oxford, Ohio 45056, USA

    Directions

    Main Operator: 011-352-582222-1
    Oxford-based Coordinator: 513-529-5050
    Emergency info: MiamiOH.edu/emergency

  • West Chester
    West Chester

    Voice of America Learning Center

    Located midway between Cincinnati and Dayton along I-75, the Voice of America Learning Center (VOALC) offers undergraduate and graduate courses and programs drawn from Miami's Regional and Oxford campuses. Home to Miami's MBA program, the Learning Center provides ready access to graduate programs for area educators and courses leading to the BIS degree for undergraduates.

    Contact and emergency information for the Voice of America Campus. Starting with general contact info on the left; additional contact and emergency information on the right.

    7847 VOA Park Dr.
    (Corner of VOA Park Dr. and Cox Rd.)
    West Chester, OH 45069
     
    voalc@MiamiOH.edu
    MiamiOH.edu/voalc

    Printable Floor Plan
    Directions

    Main Operator: 513-895-8862
    (From Middletown) 513-217-8862
    Emergency info: regionals.MiamiOH.edu/emergency

  • Middletown
    Middletown

    Middletown Regional Campus

    Nestled on 141 acres near I-75, Miami University Middletown offers bachelor's degrees, associate degrees, and beginning coursework for most four-year degrees. Nearby Greentree Health Science Academy immerses Miami's nursing and health information technology students in the health care experience while taking classes.

    Contact and emergency information for the Middletown Campus. Starting with general contact info on the left; additional contact and emergency information on the right.

     4200 N. University Blvd.
    Middletown, OH 45042
    regionalwebmaster@MiamiOH.edu
    regionals.MiamiOH.edu

    Printable Campus Map
    Directions

    Main Operator: 513-727-3200
    (Toll-free) 1-86-MIAMI-MID
    Office of Admission: 513-727-3216
    Campus Status Line: 513-727-3477
    Emergency info: regionals.MiamiOH.edu/emergency

  • Hamilton
    Hamilton

    Hamilton Regional Campus

    A compact, friendly, commuter campus, Miami Hamilton offers bachelor's degrees, associate degrees, and beginning coursework for most four-year degrees. Small class sizes, on-site child care, and flexible scheduling make Miami Hamilton attractive to students at all stages of life and career.

    Contact and emergency information for the Hamilton Campus. Starting with general contact info on the left; additional contact and emergency information on the right.

    1601 University Blvd.
    Hamilton, OH 45011
    regionalwebmaster@MiamiOH.edu
    regionals.MiamiOH.edu

    Printable Campus Map
    Directions

    Main Operator: 513-785-3000
    Office of Admission: 513-785-3111
    Campus Status Line: 513-785-3077
    Emergency info: regionals.MiamiOH.edu/emergency

  • Oxford
    Oxford

    Miami University, Oxford Ohio

    Nationally recognized as one of the most outstanding undergraduate institutions, Miami University is a public university located in Oxford, Ohio. With a student body of 16,000, Miami effectively combines a wide range of strong academic programs with faculty who love to teach and the personal attention ordinarily found only at much smaller institutions.

    Contact and emergency information for the Oxford Campus. Starting with general contact info on the left; additional contact and emergency information on the right.

    501 E. High St.
    Oxford, OH 45056

    Printable Campus Map
    Directions

    Main Operator: 513-529-1809
    Office of Admission: 513-529-2531
    Vine Hotline: 513-529-6400
    Emergency info: MiamiOH.edu/emergency