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Provost & Executive Vice President Profile
Whitworth University invites nominations and applications for the position of provost & executive vice president. The provost/EVP serves as the most senior administrator reporting directly to the president, holds an appointment to the president's cabinet and serves as the university's chief academic officer. The Academic Affairs Division is comprised of the College of Arts & Sciences, the School of Education, the School of Global Commerce & Management and the School of Continuing Studies; the Offices of Diversity & Intercultural Relations; Graduate & Continuing Studies Enrollment Management; Institutional Research; International Programs (which includes the Costa Rica Center); the Registrar; Sponsored Programs; Instructional Resources; and the Library. The provost/EVP holds administrative faculty status.
An Education of Mind and Heart
Whitworth University is a private, residential, liberal-arts institution affiliated with the Presbyterian Church (USA). Whitworth's mission is to provide its diverse student body an education of mind and heart, equipping its graduates to honor God, follow Christ and serve humanity. This mission is carried out by a community of Christian scholars committed to excellent teaching and to the integration of faith and learning.
Since 1890, Whitworth University has held fast to its founding mission to provide its students an education of mind and heart characterized by rigorous and open intellectual inquiry and the integration of Christian faith and learning. Anchored in the Reformed tradition, and enriched throughout its history by strong evangelical and ecumenical currents, Whitworth's mission is carried out by a diverse community of dedicated Christian scholars and staff members who are called to a variety of vocations to serve and support students. Whitworth believes the best learning occurs in the context of relationship – inside and outside of the classroom – where professors and staff members alike invest in the lives of students. Whitworth is committed to modeling the highest standards of integrity and fairness, and to being a trusted and valued member of the larger community. As a Christian liberal-arts university, Whitworth:
- Provides an education of mind and heart that equips our diverse student body to honor God, follow Christ and serve humanity;
- Prepares undergraduate and graduate students with an interdisciplinary education firmly rooted in the liberal arts and sciences;
- Develops students' understanding of personal responsibility, justice, and love of neighbor in a global and inclusive university community, working for reconciliation and healing in a broken world; and
- Builds a community of Christian scholars characterized by shared commitments to Christ, academic excellence, freedom of inquiry, and respect for difference.
Building on a Strong Foundation
Whitworth University launches the search for its next provost and EVP from a position of strength. Whitworth has been ranked every year since 2001 in the top 10 of U.S. News & World Reports' rankings of best universities and is ranked No. 4 in the best values among regional universities in the Western U.S. Whitworth also has been ranked consistently by Kiplinger's as one of the top 50 private university values in the U.S. and has been recognized for excellence by Forbes, The Princeton Review, Colleges of Distinction, and the Center for Student Opportunity. In August 2012, Washington Monthly ranked Whitworth as the best master's-level university in the Pacific Northwest, and ninth overall among 681 institutions nationwide.
Demand for a Whitworth education has grown significantly over the past decade; freshman applications have increased by 300 percent to 6,940 – more than 10 applications for every available spot in the 2012 freshman class. During the same period, full-time traditional enrollment increased by 34 percent to 2,249 students, and, buoyed by growth in graduate and continuing studies programs, total enrollment grew nearly 32 percent to 2,915 students. Freshman-sophomore retention and graduation rates reached record highs well above national averages. Enrollment growth made it possible to expand facilities, academic and student life programs, and faculty and staff. With the completion of the 63,000-square-foot Robinson Science Hall, more than $90 million in campus improvements have been completed since 2000, significantly enhancing the grounds and the quality of academic and residential facilities.
Whitworth has hired 56 percent of its current faculty during the past decade, infusing new energy and expertise into the university's academic programs and its distinctive approach to faith-learning integration. Likewise, the university has built upon its historic strengths in student leadership development, co-curricular programs and study abroad; its first international center opened in Costa Rica in 2010. Whitworth has been recognized nationally for its excellence in a number of areas. Over the past few years, the university was named a top producer of Fulbright scholars, The Whitworthian was honored as the top non-daily student newspaper in the country by the Society of Professional Journalists, the university was selected to receive the Award for Advancing Racial Harmony by the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities for its distinctive Act Six scholars program, the university's ethics and forensics teams brought home national championships, and the Pirates had seven NCAA teams finish in the top 20 nationally while winning the award for the best athletics program in the Northwest Conference for the fifth year in a row.
Whitworth 2021: Courage at the Crossroads – The University's Vision
In the spring of 2011 Whitworth University concluded its year-long, community-wide strategic planning process under the leadership of its new president, Dr. Beck A. Taylor. Upon unanimous ratification by the board of trustees, the university articulated the following vision for the year 2021:
Whitworth University will deepen its commitments to academic excellence and the integration of Christian faith and learning, equipping graduates to respond to God's call on their lives with intellectual competence, moral courage and deep compassion. Expanded student opportunities for experiential learning, intercultural engagement and postgraduate preparation will elevate Whitworth's standing as one of the finest Christian liberal arts universities in the country.
Whitworth 2021, the strategic plan for Whitworth University, articulates eight major goals for the university:
- Goal 1: Advance Whitworth's distinctive approach to integrating Christian faith and learning
- Goal 2: Strengthen intellectual vitality across all contexts of teaching and learning
- Goal 3: Prepare Whitworth students to be global citizens
- Goal 4: Demonstrate courageous leadership in an increasingly diverse world
- Goal 5: Elevate a liberal arts education as essential and relevant to all majors and careers
- Goal 6: Enhance Whitworth's strengths in graduate and continuing studies
- Goal 7: Invest in Whitworth's employees and support a culture of continuous improvement
- Goal 8: Exercise diligent stewardship in growing Whitworth's financial and capital resources
Critical Elements of the Academic Vision in Whitworth 2021
The following elements of the academic vision from the strategic plan will also inform the academic leadership agenda of the provost/EVP:
Traditional Undergraduate Programs
Demonstrating a commitment to comprehensive and sustainable excellence, Whitworth will stabilize its full-time, matriculated day enrollment at approximately 2,300 students. The living and learning environment on campus will be enriched by a student body that increasingly reflects the racial/ethnic diversity of the U.S. population, that includes 50 percent of its members from outside the state of Washington, and that welcomes at least 100 international students from among 30 or more countries. Continued growth in student demand, coupled with focused financial-aid strategies and new initiatives to attract high-achieving students, will enable the university to achieve admissions goals for academic quality (measured in part by an average SAT of 1850 and average GPA of 3.75) and demographic profile, and to enroll students who embrace and advance Whitworth's unique mind-and-heart mission.
Whitworth will offer a rigorous general education core, grounded in the liberal arts and explored through the lens of Christian faith, that provides an excellent foundation for approximately 50 academic majors located in the School of Education, School of Global Commerce & Management, School of Continuing Studies, and the newly formed College of Arts & Sciences. Where appropriate to address competitive or educational objectives, academic programs will achieve and/or sustain the highest level of accreditation in their disciplines. While strengthening intellectual vitality across the campus, the university will place special emphasis on supporting interdisciplinary programs and scholarship and on enhancing the quality and capacity of its academic programs. Excellence will be sustained and strengthened in programs that bring national recognition to the university, such as education, forensics (debate), intercollegiate athletics, journalism, music and theology.
Whitworth will be the university-of-choice in its market for graduate programs in business, education and theology. Sustained enrollment growth will be achieved through innovation in the scope and format of existing programs, and by strategic expansion into academic areas that advance Whitworth's mission and that demonstrate high market demand.
Continuing Studies Programs
Whitworth will elevate its position as the recognized leader for bachelor's degree programs serving non-traditional learners in the Inland Northwest. Continuing Studies will continue to increase its enrollment at an average rate of 5 percent or more per year. Planned growth will be achieved through expansion of program offerings and strategic development of off-site locations that meet market demand and fit well with Whitworth's educational mission.
Effective Teaching and Learning
Whitworth will deepen connections to the liberal arts across the curriculum and will strengthen students' understanding of a liberal arts education integrated with Christian faith and character development as uniquely designed to encourage lifelong learning, principled leadership, and meaningful service to society and one's profession. Informed by the latest developments in neuroscience and learning technology, Whitworth will implement a vision for teaching and learning in the 21st century that encourages robust intellectual engagement between and among students and faculty and that expands experiential learning opportunities such as internships, service learning, research, and study abroad. By 2021, Whitworth will rank among the top 10 master's-level universities in the U.S. in study-abroad participation, with at least 70 percent of its traditional undergraduates participating in cross-cultural study experiences.
Diversity in a Global Context
The university will empower a mission-driven educational program that cultivates in students, faculty, staff, and trustees the capacity to work effectively across multiple dimensions of human diversity. Whitworth will achieve and sustain a level of excellence that emphasizes the deep truth, love and grace of the Gospel, contributing to an inclusive and diverse community and a thriving environment for learning, working, and living. Initially, special emphasis will be placed on issues of intercultural competency and equity related to gender, race and ethnicity. Whitworth will make steady progress toward achieving gender parity and reflecting the racial/ethnic diversity of the U.S. population among its employees. Our students also live in an increasingly interdependent world. They must be able to cross international boundaries and navigate politics, cultures, economics, religions and languages with skill and understanding if they are to serve and lead in an ever-evolving global community. Whitworth will equip its students with the knowledge, skills and insight they need to do justice, love mercy, and walk humbly as global citizens.
Whitworth will equip all students to explore, discern and respond to God's call on their lives. In a continuing effort to support the spiritual health and development of all members of the campus community, the university will expand the number and variety of small groups available to students for faith exploration and growth, and will engage students, faculty and staff in formal and informal worship and in community service and outreach. As a function of its educational and theological identity, Whitworth will nurture a community of scholars and staff members from diverse Christian faith traditions and will welcome and respect all students, regardless of faith background, who seek to join our community.