The Student News Site of Appalachian State University

The Appalachian

The Student News Site of Appalachian State University

The Appalachian

The Student News Site of Appalachian State University

The Appalachian

Newsletter Signup

Get our news delivered straight to your inbox every week.

* indicates required

Faculty Senate to resubmit mission statement

The Faculty Senate announced a resolution regarding Appalachian State University’s mission statement in an emergency meeting held Monday that the University of North Carolina’s Board of Governor’s has attempted to revise.

Members of the Appalachian State University Faculty Senate heard a resolution in support of Chancellor Kenneth Peacock’s original mission statement wording. The resolution, a second attempt to amend previous changes to the mission statement made by the Board of Governors, passed. Photo by Carson Hager | The Appalachian

The resolution is a second attempt at amending the BOG’s changes to the mission statement.

The original language of the mission statement read: “[A]cademic learning occurs in a wide range of undergraduate, selected masters, intermediate and doctoral programs offered on campus, at off-campus sites and online.”

UNC system President Tom Ross, originally revised this statement Nov. 25 to change the words “doctoral programs” to “the doctorate in education,” limiting the university to education as its sole doctoral program, which

Chancellor Kenneth Peacock resisted.

The Faculty Senate unanimously agreed on the new resolution, in hopes that the BOG  will reconsider their revision.

“[B]e it resolved that the Faculty Senate at Appalachian State University supports the original language in the Mission Statement,” according to the resolution. “Such flexibility will allow ASU to respond more effectively to the economic and social needs of North Carolina.”

The faculty was asked for their input during the faculty meeting Jan. 24 after Peacock received the same revision a second time from Ross.

“We believe that we should have that flexibility [to create a doctoral program] to better serve the community, the region and the citizens of North Carolina,” Faculty Senate Chairman Andy Koch said.

Koch said he has no way of knowing how Ross or the rest of the BOG will react to the resolution, but he hopes that a decision is reached within a couple of weeks.

If Ross disapproves of the mission statement, Ross will make another recommendation to be voted on by the BOG.

The mission statement’s language as currently written by the BOG prevents Appalachian from creating doctorate programs outside of the education program until the statement expires in five years, unless an amendment process is successful in changing it later on.

The resolution also argues that the mission statement is in alignment with the UNC system’s current goals.

“[T]he UNC Strategic Plan also identifies ‘Strengthening Academic Quality’ as an objective for serving the citizens of North Carolina,” according to the resolution. “The creation of selected and targeted doctoral programs will attract superior faculty and strengthen academic quality.”

Faculty Senator Libby Puckett said although she supports the resolution, she understands the reasoning behind the BOG’s limit on the mission statement.

“If we grow our doctoral programs, we then become a different type of institution,” Puckett, an associate professor in the Department of Chemistry, said. “Grants and things like that [will change] and shift our entire university, but I don’t think that we should be limited in what we choose to do as a campus.”

Faculty Senator Karl Campbell said he believes the debate needs to be centralized around a different focal point.

“If we phrase this as a debate over whether or not we want to have a Ph.D. program, we might lose,” Campbell, an associate professor in the Department of History, said. “If we phrase this as a debate over whether or not we have the opportunity in the future to have Ph.D. programs, I think we have a better chance to win.”

Appalachian’s Student Government Association is also fighting the action by appealing to the BOG as a collective group of students.

“I would hope that the Board of Governors sees what we are doing is progressive and will help us to expand,” SGA President Dylan Russell said.

Russell said SGA’s legislative branch will vote Tuesday on the approval of a formal resolution to be sent to Ross  written by the SGA Senate regarding the mission statement.

“This is an issue of campus autonomy and governance,” Russell said. “Why should we restrict ourselves as a university?”

Story by Laney Ruckstuhl, Intern News Reporter

Photo by Carson Hager, Staff Photographer

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Appalachian
Our Goal

We hope you appreciate this article! Before you move on, our student staff wanted to ask if you would consider supporting The Appalachian's award-winning journalism. We are celebrating our 90th anniversary of The Appalachian in 2024!

We receive funding from the university, which helps us to compensate our students for the work they do for The Appalachian. However, the bulk of our operational expenses — from printing and website hosting to training and entering our work into competitions — is dependent upon advertising revenue and donations. We cannot exist without the financial and educational support of our fellow departments on campus, our local and regional businesses, and donations of money and time from alumni, parents, subscribers and friends.

Our journalism is produced to serve the public interest, both on campus and within the community. From anywhere in the world, readers can access our paywall-free journalism, through our website, through our email newsletter, and through our social media channels. Our supporters help to keep us editorially independent, user-friendly, and accessible to everyone.

If you can, please consider supporting us with a financial gift from $10. We appreciate your consideration and support of student journalism at Appalachian State University. If you prefer to make a tax-deductible donation, or if you would prefer to make a recurring monthly gift, please give to The Appalachian Student News Fund through the university here:

Donate to The Appalachian
Our Goal

Comments (0)

All The Appalachian Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *