Making Change Happen
Part of the InTeGrate Wittenberg University Program Model
High-Level Project Timeline
Year 1, Summer
- The team leader planned project evaluation details beyond those in our proposal in coordination with an InTeGrate Project Evaluator
- Leadership team members reviewed modules available for implementation, discussed early concerns
Year 1, Fall
- Faculty planned their implementation of InTeGrate modules and aligned all revisions with the rubric used to create the modules
- Two additional faculty were recruited to implement modules to replace one team leader who was funded through a module pilot effort and one who decided to wait until the next year
Year 1, Spring
- Leadership team members plus two new members successfully implemented InTeGrate modules in their courses (Biology, Business, Chemistry, Geology, World Languages)
- The leadership team rearranged itself to include three original leadership team members plus one other faculty member who was recruited into the early implementation phase
- The leadership team reviewed their proposed recruitment workshop plans and developed materials for a summer workshop
- A summer workshop announcement to broaden participation in sustainability curriculum was sent out to Wittenberg faculty and colleagues at nearby schools
Year 2, Summer
- The leadership team hosted a workshop supporting implementation planning for the faculty who were recruited to broaden participation in sustainability curriculum
- New faculty from Wittenberg, Antioch College, Clark State, and University of Dayton were recruited after a few workshop participants decided not to implement for various reasons. Two leadership team members also decided to implement.
Year 2, Fall
- Nine faculty implemented modules across six disciplines (Biology, Communication, Environmental Seminar, Geology, Physics, World Languages)
Year 2, Spring
- The leadership team recruited new participants for community-based sustainability projects at the January Faculty Retreat
- The leadership team finalized a design for community-based sustainability projects and an assessment plan. This drew from work of Dr. Fortner and Dr. Burgett in their Geology and Environmental Science courses.
- The leadership team paired seven local experts to collaborate with faculty from Wittenberg University and Antioch College to design community-based sustainability projects.
- Three faculty implemented modules across three disciplines (Political Science, Public Health, World Languages)
- The Hagen Center for Civic and Urban Engagement collaborated to develop shared assessment strategies for internships and courses
Key Aspects of the Program
Our effort was successful because 1) leadership was a collaborative effort, 2) we anticipated barriers to implementation, 3) we responded dynamically to change and leveraged new opportunities as they arose, 4) we maintained alignment with our central project goals, Wittenberg's institutional mission, and the personal motivation of faculty leading this effort, and 5) our students and partners responded enthusiastically.
We provide more details in Advice for Future Implementation
Our sustainability effort has built institutional capacity in interdisciplinary problem solving. Sustainability course offerings grew by 80% between 2014-2016 and the number of disciplines involved grew by more than one-third. The First Year Seminar will continue to emphasize sustainability in alignment with evolving FYS curricular goals. As the project evolved from implementation of modules to building connections (e.g. linked courses, programming, and community-projects), sharing of ideas between faculty, students, and partners expanded, supporting long term collaboration. The visibility for sustainability issues at Wittenberg has increased with more than 30 campus and local news stories on sustainability-related topics during the project's initial two years, including four mentioning this project. Greater visibility attracts new partners and expands collaboration (e.g. grants, resource sharing, internships). This has produced many outcomes beyond our proposal, for example, our effort has informed institutional strategic planning and evaluation. Specifically, we have compiled institutional evidence of success in interdisciplinary and community-based curricular initiatives and identified shared assessment tools for community-based courses and internships that will be administered by the Susan Hagen Center for Civic and Urban Engagement after the project ends.