Internal Scan. Strengths

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1 Internal Scan In its young history, FGCU has been highly successful by any measure. Enrollment has more than quintupled since opening day (2,584) in the fall of 1997 to 14,492 students in the fall of 2014 (as of October 14, 2014) with students representing 45 states, including the District of Columbia, and more than 85 countries. From just 49 degrees awarded in its inaugural year, FGCU now awards over 2,200 degrees annually and, during the spring 2014 commencement, FGCU s 20,000th graduate accepted her diploma. Additionally, first-year retention rates have improved from 43% to 78% in the fall of FGCU offers nearly 80 programs leading to a bachelors, masters or other advanced graduate degrees. The men s basketball team shot to fame during its second year of post-season eligibility in the NCAA s Division I earning a place in the in the NCAA tournament and reaching the sweet sixteen. What is the underlying key to FGCU s success? How will it position itself to continue its incredible momentum for the foreseeable future? How does the university leverage its current strengths to ensure future success? What obstacles must be overcome to realize the vision? As FGCU prepares for the next five years it is well to consider the current strengths, areas for enhancement, opportunities, and challenges that provide the context for its ambitious plans. Strengths At the heart of its success are the people that comprise FGCU: its faculty, staff and students. FGCU s rapid growth in student numbers has outpaced increases in faculty and staff. As a result, faculty and staff are very productive. FGCU s culture promotes faculty and staff retention and consequently results in a knowledgeable and experienced cadre of professionals to efficiently and effectively deliver the university s programs and services. Page 1

2 Student Enrollment Increase & Faculty/Staff Increase Headcount 16,000 14,000 12,000 10,000 8,000 6,000 4,000 2, * Undergraduate Graduate Nondegree Percentage Increase Students Percentage of increase in Staff Source: August 2014 BOTIS Report * preliminary data 16% 14% 12% 10% 8% 6% 4% 2% 0% The university s state-of-the art physical plant is the youngest among the Florida State University System. It is characterized by low deferred maintenance and technological innovation including signature facilities for specialized fields, energy-efficient systems for cooling and electricity generation, and LEED certified buildings. While the 760-acre campus is located on environmentally sensitive land, there is ample room for growth. FGCU has developed and implemented a broad array of academic offerings over a short period of time. As of fall 2014, FGCU offers 52 undergraduate programs leading to the baccalaureate degree, 24 masters programs, and two doctoral degree programs (Ed.D. and D.P.T.). Many of these programs have a professional orientation and the university holds specialized accreditation from 15 different professional accrediting bodies. Page 2

3 Table 1. Current Specialized Accreditations Lutgert College of Business - The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International) The College of Education The National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) Master of Public Administration - Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration (NASPAA) Master of Science in Nursing Anesthesia - Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational programs (COA) Master of Science in Occupational Therapy - American Occupational Therapy Association Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) Doctor of Physical Therapy - Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education, American Physical Therapy Association (CAPTE) M.A. School Counseling; M.A. Clinical Mental Health Counseling; and M.Ed. in School Counseling - Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs/American Counseling Association (CACREP) B.S.N. and M.S.N. (in Nursing) - Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) B.S.W. and M.S.W. (in Social Work) - Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) Bachelor of Science in Clinical Laboratory Science - National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS) B.S. in Professional Golf Management - Professional Golf Association of America (PGA) B.S. in Athletic Training - Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE) B.S. in Resort and Hospitality Management Accreditation Commission for Programs in Hospitality Administration (ACPHA) Bower School of Music and the Arts - National Association of Schools of Music (NASM) B.S. Bioengineering, B.S. Civil Engineering, and B.S. Environmental -the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET Page 3

4 These programs are particularly responsive to student and community needs as reflected in state employment data following graduation and in annual enrollment increases. FGCU graduates at both the baccalaureate and master s levels typically are near the top of the SUS in terms of employment rates and salaries. Employment and / or Continuing Education in Florida Following Graduation Bachelor Degrees Workforce Development Employment and / or Continuing Education in Florida Following Graduation Master Degrees Year FGCU s SUS Rank Year FGCU s SUS Rank Source: Florida Education and Training Placement Information Program Page 4

5 The faculty is well-qualified and constantly growing. In February of 2014, FGCU announced the establishment of the Lucas Center for Faculty Development. The Center will transform the university's Teaching, Learning and Assessment Initiative by expanding training and mentoring opportunities for faculty throughout their teaching careers. This commitment to faculty development will assist the university in its continued growth in academic excellence within the classroom, leading to student success and better learning outcomes. Full-time faculty provide roughly 80% of all instruction complemented by a cadre of experienced adjunct faculty. Page 5

6 Academic support at FGCU is exceptional. FGCU s library services are among the great strengths of the institution. Occupying over 135,000 square feet, FGCU s state-of-the-art library building is the on-campus focal point for student and faculty scholarship averaging approximately 2,000 visitors per day. The library boasts 500,000 titles, 45,000 journals, 25,000 cataloged e-books, over 300 data bases, and 135 public computers. Remote access is available 24/7 and the library staff includes 18 librarians who hold faculty rank (two of which are currently under recruitment), 4 additional professionals in technology, administration and business services, and 18.5 support staff (one of which is currently in recruitment). Information Technology (IT) resources are outstanding and begin with a network backbone that connects all campus buildings at gigabyte speeds with 100 megabit connectivity to the desktop. Wireless computing is nearly ubiquitous on campus. Courses are supported through the Canvas Learning Management system and every classroom is furnished with an electronic podium. Over 70 physical and virtual servers provide for the delivery of a broad range of applications. Finally, university business operations are facilitated through the university s Banner ERP software. In short, the university has an IT platform that is flexible and well-positioned to sustain further growth. The auxiliary services area provides a wide range of resources to support the university s educational mission. These include bookstore and food service operations that are out-sourced, but generate growing revenue for the university in addition to the Eagle ID Card System and the R25 classroom and event scheduling system. Page 6

7 Student life on campus is vigorous and has grown consistently during the last decade. Over 4,700 students reside in university housing. The Division of Student Affairs provides students with health services, counseling, prevention and wellness programs, recreational opportunities, advising, housing, and career development to meet student needs. The Division delivers an exceptional first-year experience for residential students through its FYRE program. A wellcoordinated student judicial affairs process and student leadership program help round out student development. The university s athletic program has expanded rapidly to accommodate the growth of a regional comprehensive university. The success of its programs and its student athletes is remarkable and the community support the program receives is extremely gratifying. The campus is fortunate to have state-of-the-art facilities to support the program as it successfully made the transition to NCAA Division I. During its second year of post-season eligibility in the NCAA s Division I, the FGCU men s basketball team garnered national attention as the first 15 th seed team to advance to the sweet sixteen round: all the while maintaining an average GPA over 3.0. During spring of 2014, the average student athlete GPA was 3.24, higher than the overall student body for the 11th straight semester. The administrative staff and coaches are very experienced and professionally accomplished. The university s advancement operation has been a primary strength of the university during the last decade. Successful engagement with the community has resulted in multiple public/private partnerships that significantly accelerated the growth and development of the university that simply could not have occurred with public money alone. As FGCU approaches its 20th anniversary in 2017, it has announced a $100-million fundraising campaign to ensure its continued growth and development as Southwest Florida s leading institution of higher education. The campaign s five strategic fundraising initiatives are as follows: Academic Excellence; Scholarships; Student Success; Athletics; and Community & Regional Impact. Together, they will positively affect the campus and the region through investments in faculty endowments and training programs; scholarly research by faculty and students; student scholarships (e.g., first generation scholarships, endowed scholarships and performance scholarships, and athletic scholarships), undergraduate learning projects, international learning projects, and career readiness projects; athletic facilities; Eagle Funds for Excellence; funding for WGCU public radio and television; support for FGCU s Service Learning; and expansion of lifelonglearning opportunities through the Renaissance Academy. FGCU continues to stand out amongst its peers as exemplary in its commitment to community engagement and service learning. In 2014, the total number of service hours contributed to the community by FGCU students rose to just under 1.6 million since the university opened in Page 7

8 FGCU has been recognized with placement on the National and Community Service s Honor Roll with Distinction for three consecutive years. In support of its environmentally focused mission, FGCU has participated in the Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System (STARS) program to measure sustainability within academics, research, engagement, operations, and facilities in comparison with institutions of higher education. FGCU has been a dedicated AASHE member since 2006, when it was one of only 50 institutions that participated in the STARS pilot. The university earned a Silver rating in 2011 and is now the first STARS 2.0 Gold-rated institution in the State of Florida. The recognition affirms FGCU's commitment to pursuing and maintaining best practices in sustainability. Additionally, the university recently acquired increased bandwidth that supports greater use of technology for academic support. Finally, restructuring of the university commensurate with its growth promises to enhance efficiencies and realize further economies of scale. Page 8

9 Weaknesses Physical facilities While the plant is young with little deferred maintenance, there is a need for an additional science classroom and laboratory building to support instruction and research. Additionally, based on the recommendations of the State Plant Survey Team in March of 2013, there is a need for a campus recreation center and gymnasium facility commensurate with the size of the enrollment. The table below identifies the unmet square footage need of facilities identified through the facilities planning Campus Climate Survey conducted in The university also identifies renovations to the chiller plant as critical to support the overall condition of the physical facilities. Funding Unfortunately, Public Education Capital Outlay (PECO) dollars are not expected anytime in the future. FGCU project requests for the next five years rely upon pending PECO funding, as reflected in the Five-Year Capital Improvement Plan and Legislative Budget Request excerpt from the June 17, 2014 FGCU Board of Trustees agenda item below. Page 9

10 Without funding for additional facilities, opportunity for further growth is constrained, resulting in a less ambitious enrollment plan approved by the FGCU Board of Trustees on September 16, 2014 (original growth for in-state, undergraduate enrollment was estimated to sustain an average of 4.9% annually). Page 10

11 The FGCU Board of Trustees has pledged to maintain a consistent tuition and fee schedule for students for two consecutive years through Regulation FGCU-PR Tuition and fee increases in the near future seem unlikely limiting financial revenue growth needed to support quality enhancements. For Fiscal Year , tuition and fees contributed close to $50 million toward the FGCU overall revenues of close to $200 million. Page 11

12 Excerpted from FGCU Operating Budget The six-year graduation rate is relatively low for the State University System. This metric common to all universities in the State University System is tied to performance based funding and efforts are underway to address this weakness. The rates below are provided from the Board of Governor s Annual Accountability Report. The incoming academic profile of incoming First Time in College (FTIC) FGCU students, while increasing, is still below the average in the State University System. Opportunities Funding and Performance Performance funding provides an opportunity to receive additional revenue. The Performance Based Funding Model includes 10 metrics, two of which are institution-specific. A number of initiatives throughout the university are targeted to improve FGCU s performance on these metrics. Among these are the following: retention programs and services, professional development, the faculty-developed Quality Enhancement Plan to improve student learning, and support services. The performance funding allocated to FGCU in amounted to $8.1 million, of which $5.9 million was added to the budget on a recurring basis. Page 12

13 Facilities The Campus Master Plan outlines the components for future land use, goals, objectives, and opportunities. Through 2020, the plan projects the campus core will continue to include academic functions, the library, and student services and other support functions. The southeast district will contain student housing and dining, recreation and parking facilities. The northwest district will contain research or other mixed-use facilities and associated parking. The north lakefront parcel is considered to be largely built-out, so development of this area is likely to be limited to expanded athletic facilities. The southwest district will continue to be developed with small facilities largely serving outreach functions of the university. The university shall seek to acquire off-campus lands when necessary to meet the needs of academic, housing, recreation, support or other functions ancillary to the mission of the university. This plan is being updated to reflect current conditions. For fiscal year , FGCU was awarded $7 million for the continuation of the Emergent Technologies Institute. The Innovation Hub Research and Development Park will attract multiple businesses and corporations in the areas of renewable energy and sustainable environmental practices and technology. The entire research park will be built with sustainable practices related to power generation, ground and runoff water control, efficient building design and sustainability. As a manifestation of its environmentally focused mission, this project will benefit the State, and particularly Southwest Florida, as it diversifies the economic development of the region by focusing on research opportunities in fields associated with sustainable and renewable Page 13

14 energy. In so doing, it will position Southwest Florida for future leadership opportunities in this emerging field of alternative energies which are most sustainable over a long time frame. The project will also expand the economic potential of Southwest Florida through further economic diversification beyond the major three-prong base of tourism, health services, and construction. FGCU will construct a 24,600 gross sq. ft. facility on a 6.5-acre parcel which has been donated to the university by developers. The 6.5-acre parcel lies within a developer-owned 240-acre tract of land to be promoted and developed as a research innovation hub. A project goal is to construct state of the art research facilities related to the exploration of renewable energy systems and products in sustainable building design and leading environmental practices. In keeping with the theme of the research park and the FGCU's mission, the ETI project will seek LEED Silver Certification. In July 2010, FGCU received a 500-acre state property, Buckingham Complex, located approximately 15 miles from campus comprising 60 buildings totaling approximately 340,000 square feet constructed in the 1950 s and 1960 s. Conceptual master planning of this property is underway in order to assess how this property and its facilities can best be shaped to serve the mission of the university. Online Learning In the academic year, approximately 15% of course sections offered were distance learning courses. FGCU is in a position to expand student access and quality through online learning by offering more courses and degree programs through this modality, where appropriate, and in support of the FGCU mission. An Online Learning Task Force is developing a strategic plan to guide these efforts. In addition to the expansion of online learning options, FGCU stands to benefit from scheduling of classes to maximize utilization of existing physical facilities and increase accessibility and enrollment options for students. An analysis of classroom space utilization resulted in the expansion of courses offered on particular days of the week. The consideration of additional blended learning opportunities, whereby courses are offered as a blend of face-to-face and online learning modalities, allows for classroom space to be assigned to multiple course sections throughout a semester. Page 14

15 New Academic Programs Within the next five years, FGCU has proposed to add four new baccalaureate degree programs, five graduate degree programs, and two doctoral programs to its current catalog of options. These programs represent a number of degrees in science, technology, engineering and mathematics-related fields in addition to regionally relevant disciplines that address workforce needs. Improved Student Learning As a component of the SACSCOC Reaffirmation of Accreditation process, the FGCU faculty have proposed a Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP), Improving Writing, Critical Thinking, and Information Literacy in the Majors at Florida Gulf Coast University, to strengthen undergraduate student learning in relation these skills. The QEP will be integrated into all undergraduate degree programs across all levels of enrollment (freshman through senior). The ultimate goal is to improve student learning, resulting in the retention of students toward graduation and a higher caliber of FGCU graduates. This plan, upon endorsement through the SACSCOC review process, will be implemented fully in the academic year. Shared Governance The purpose of shared governance at FGCU is to effectively promote the accomplishment of the university's unique vision and mission through shared responsibility and accountability among stakeholders, while exercising sound principles of fiscal management and retaining public Page 15

16 accountability. FGCU is committed to the notion that the best path to success is one where the responsibility and accountability for academic excellence and student success is shared openly and cooperatively among all parties. Administration Faculty Board of Trustees Staff President FGCU Students Implementation of shared governance at FGCU is mediated through the FGCU Board of Trustees Bylaws, Planning and Budget Council Bylaws, Collective Bargaining Agreement, Faculty Senate Governance Document, Staff Advisory Council Bylaws and the Student Government Constitution. FGCU Policy further outlines the purpose and commitment of the university to this practice. Marketing Historically, marketing initiatives at FGCU have been decentralized and inconsistent in terms of brand, messages, and integration of efforts. A newly developed organizational structure will provide for consistent policies and procedures for marketing across the university, integration of communication efforts, and creation of a collaborative and planned approach to publicly represent FGCU internally and externally. These efforts will provide opportunities for greater alumni outreach, prospective student recruitment, and donor interest. Challenges Degree Production Page 16

17 FGCU is faced with the challenges of increasing degree production with the leveling off of enrollment growth. Increasing degree production will be more dependent upon enhancing persistence to graduation. Funding Anticipated lack of funding for capital projects will continue to pose a challenge to campus improvement and expansion efforts. University students pay Building Fees and Capital Improvement Fees of $6.76 per credit hour per semester; however, the commitment to maintain a stable tuition and fee rate, and the decrease in enrollment projections, limits future growth of this source of funding. The projects funded from this student-based source are primarily studentrelated and typically include outdoor recreation facilities, athletic facilities and student leisure space. The existing Campus Recreation Center is inadequate and needs to be greatly expanded. The need for additional classroom, laboratory and chiller plant facilities will remain. The continued reduction in State appropriations, resulting in the heavier reliance upon tuition and fees to support the operating budgets of the universities, presents a long-term challenge, especially with a decrease in enrollment projections. Page 17

18 Source: Board of Governors SUS Annual Accountability Report (January 16, 2014); SUS Funding Sponsored research is becoming more competitive against a shrinking pool of federal funds. Source: UBOT Agenda TAB 20; June 17, 2014 Access Increasing the selectivity of the university and limiting enrollment due to space constraints may lead to reduced opportunities for prospective students. The number of undergraduate Page 18

19 applications received for the year exceeded the previous year by 35%. Additionally, the average freshman profile had a high school GPA of 3.68 (up from 3.40 in ). FGCU has the second highest out-of-state tuition rate within the State University System ($ per credit hour in ). Tuition and fees are prohibitive to many out-of-state students, making it somewhat challenging to recruit students who have not yet established Florida residency or who are residents outside of Florida. Out-of-State students add diversity and enhanced selectivity to the student body and have the potential to increase institutional revenue at a time of constrained revenue growth. Page 19

20 Technology Resources Although the information technology infrastructure at FGCU represents an inherent strength, the number of IT staff is not large enough to sustain the current level of IT services. Page 20

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