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A LETTER FROM ACTING PROVOST NIETZEL
ON THE UK FUTURES TASK FORCE

By Michael Nietzel,
Acting Provost

 

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I am confident that the task force members, all of whom have outstanding, national scholarly reputations, will reflect inclusively on the institution's entire academic spectrum as they accomplish their multiple tasks. The task force will be conducting its assignments in an open manner for the university community.

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Aug. 23, 2001 -- (Lexington, Ky.) --  As announced by President Todd last month, the University of Kentucky Futures: Faculty for the 21st Century Task Force has now been established.

The Futures Task Force is co-chaired by Dr. Eugenia Toma and Dr. David Watt. Task force members are Professors Dibakar Bhattacharyya, Bob Blouin, Susan Carvalho, Joe Chappell, Jim Cobb, Mary Davis, Fred deBeer, Hank Dietz, Jeff Ebersole, Bill Fortune, Greg Gerhardt, Lynne Hall, Nancy Harrington, Everett McCorvey, Rich Milich, Wallis Miller, Avindra Nath, Dana Nelson, Brian Rymond, John Thelin, and Terry Childers. Lisa Collins, Assistant Dean of the Graduate School, is providing staff support for the Task Force.

The Futures Task Force has been charged with the following three tasks:

* assess the current status of the University's scholarly and educational strengths as well as its best opportunities for initiatives with a high potential for excellence;

* recommend 7-10 areas of contemporary scholarship that should be the priorities for investments of new and reallocated resources, particularly the addition of faculty lines;

* propose specific options for academic restructuring and reorganization that will promote interdisciplinary innovations, strengthen research and degree programs, increase administrative efficiency, and generate additional savings in administrative costs that can be reallocated to academic priorities. The task force has been asked to identify broad contemporary intellectual/research themes (rather than specific units or programs) as priorities.

I am confident that the task force members, all of whom have outstanding, national scholarly reputations, will reflect inclusively on the institution's entire academic spectrum as they accomplish their multiple tasks. The task force will be conducting its assignments in an open manner for the university community.

With that in mind, be sure to visit the task force's Web site. Faculty, students, and staff who wish to send a message to the Futures Task Force can do so through this site.

The task force's report, which should be completed by December 31, 2001, will serve as a blueprint for strengthening the University's standing among research institutions.

Michael T. Nietzel
Acting Provost


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