By Salina Nasir
The Cal Poly Pomona Semester Conversion Steering Committee has decided to push CPP’s calendar conversion back until fall 2018.
In a campus-wide email sent out on April 22, Director of Semester Conversion Francelina Neto updated the campus on the postponement of the conversion. The original start date was set for fall 2017, but concerns over rushing into the conversion and time constraints ultimately resulted in the plan’s delay.
“With [semester conversion] comes great responsibility,” said Neto in her e-mail. “The university is undertaking this project thoughtfully, with great care for the concerns of students, faculty and staff.”
The Semester Conversion Steering Committee is responsible for facilitating this conversion. The committee met for the first time last week to make the decision.
The e-mail briefly mentioned the upcoming responsibilities for faculty and staff over the next four years, including a total redesign of current academic programs.
“The extra year will provide [faculty and staff with] more time to review and develop courses and programs to ensure they are meeting [the students’] changing needs and preparing [them] well for the challenges of the world [that they] will enter [upon graduating],” said Neto in the e-mail.
Neto’s e-mail also explained that such a project should not be “rushed.”
“It is better to take the time to do conversion right,” said Nato in the e-mail.
When Neto was first appointed as the leader of the conversion process, she carried high hopes of aiding the entire CPP community throughout the procedure by honoring the campus’ commitment to excellence.
The delay seems to have been made as an extension of Neto’s initial goal to protect CPP faculty and students, and to ensure a graceful transition.
Neto could not be reached for further comments.
Dorothy Wills, president of CPP’s chapter of the California Faculty Association, is pleased with this delay.
“I was very relieved,” said Wills. “We felt like we were being rushed into it.”
Wills explained that the initial date gave faculty only until next fall to revise their entire curriculum.
“If the faculty is given sufficient time, then we can make sure and do a proper job of it so the students won’t end up being the sacrificial lamb,” said Wills.
According to Wills, Neto has been in close consultation with CFA.
“It has been a pleasant experience for us to be included in the [process],” said Wills.
Wills also mentioned that CFA members have talked directly to the provost, the associate provost and the associate vice president for faculty affairs. She is pleased with the way the administration is handling concerns.
“We are under the impression that they have all listened to CFA’s point of view and have taken it seriously,” said Wills.
Although Wills is somewhat comfortable with the new deadline, she still acknowledges more changes that could be made to better the conversion process.
“We expect [the committee] to include lecturers in their consideration, and we expect them to be transparent about the budget and the resources and how they are being distributed,” said Wills.
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