Faculty Senate passes motion to begin implementation of Kent Core

Anna Staver

Faculty Senate unanimously passed the motion to begin the implementation of Kent Core but was unable to come to an agreement about a new experimental learning requirement during their monthly meeting.

“The three-year period now begins,” said Faculty Senate Chair Mack Hassler. “At the end of that period the Kent Core will be complete.”

Kent Core will replace the college specific LER requirements and help simplify the process of changing majors. Changes to class titles, descriptions and methodology could begin as early as Spring 2011. There was no debate on the core, and the motion quickly passed.

In contrast, there was a lot of discussion over an experiential learning requirement that would apply to all Kent students. The proposal states that every student would be required to gain experience outside the classroom in order to graduate. This could be fulfilled by internships, volunteer work or research projects.

Philosophy Professor Deborah Smith said she supports the idea of an experiential learning proposal but questions the wording of this specific proposal. “My concern is that the flexibility has so watered down what counts as experiential learning,” Smith said. “That it is no longer really a valuable thing to require our students to do.”

Members in favor of the requirement cited a 2010 survey by the National Association of Colleges and Employers that found students who took internships were more likely to receive job offers and also more likely to be offered more money after graduation.

The senate decided to hold off a vote until the October meeting.

Faculty Senate also passed a motion to extend the exemption for new students 21 and older to opt out of the First Year Experience class to all regional campuses.

Contact Anna Staver at [email protected].