Let me tell you a story...
As a background, several of us have been working since 2007 to bring forth a new model of interdisciplinary learning in higher education. We have had what one might call failures and successes along the way. There was certainly no absence of drama or discovery or even profound transformations in our lives and the students' lives that I would directly relate to our intent to collaboratively research this path together.
During that time period, the university replaced these people: president, provost, 6 out of 7 deans. We had been working for several years with the individuals previously in these roles. All our work was based on collaboration and academic freedom (versus the application of unilateral force by authorized actors in positions of power in the institution, such as the academic senate or administrators).
So, when the new provost came in 2012, we offered to share with her and the new deans what we were doing, since our efforts crossed college boundaries...we offered each year: no response.
This year, the provost has developed a list of strategic directions for the university revolving around these imperatives:
- emergent teaching models
- new meanings of "learn by doing"
- role of community engagement
- model of teacher/scholar at our polytechnic