President Gamble addresses high school recipients of the 2015 UA Scholars awards and their families during a reception in Anchorage. Photo by Monique Musick

President Gamble's 2014 Thanksgiving Message

President Gamble wishes to share an important message with all UA employees this Thanksgiving. Please click HERE to read his 2014 Thanksgiving message.

Atwater Fills Key K-12 Outreach Position

University of Alaska Vice President of Academic Affairs, Dr. Dana Thomas, is pleased to announce that Dr. Steve Atwater has been selected to lead the K-12 Outreach team as associate vice president. Atwater will start his position with UA on Dec. 1, 2014 .

“I want to underscore that this is a very important leadership role at the UA System,” said Thomas about the K-12 Outreach position. “Dr. Atwater’s expertise and insights are of particular importance in light of our efforts at creating productive partnerships with Alaska’s schools, as outlined in Shaping Alaska’s Future.”

Atwater has a strong understanding of the challenges faced by Alaska’s schools. In speaking about his new position, he said, “After spending the past 25 years working in both rural and urban school districts, I am pleased to join the University of Alaska. The need to more tightly align the educational efforts of our state's K-12 districts with our university system is well established. I look forward to helping to meet this need in my new position.”

Atwater joins UA after five years as superintendent of the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District, where he was named Alaska’s 2013 Superintendent of the Year. Prior to his work for KPBSD, Atwater taught secondary education and served consecutively as head teacher, curriculum coordinator and superintendent for the Lake & Peninsula School District in King Salmon, AK.

Atwater’s experience with the Alaska education system extends to his own professional training, as he earned both his master’s in education and his doctorate in educational leadership from the University of Alaska Fairbanks.

UA Board of Regents Approves Operating, Capital Requests

The 11-member University of Alaska Board of Regents adopted operating and capital budget requests for the upcoming fiscal year during their November meeting.

On the operating side, the budget invests in key, high-demand education and workforce programs such as teacher education; health education; fisheries, seafood and maritime industries; and mining. It also invests in student advising and degree completion efforts that already are indicating significant student success as a result of previous years' funding enhancements.

On the capital side, the dollars are expected to be very limited and the UAF engineering building completion ranks very high for FY16.  MORE....

Campus Title IX Climate Survey Update

UA is committed to addressing and preventing sexual harassment and sexual assault on all of its campuses. As part of that effort, you have likely already heard that we will be conducting a systemwide climate survey dealing with sexual assault based on White House recommendations. This survey was planned to launch prior to the October visit and compliance review by the Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights (OCR). But implementation hurdles and feedback from other universities led UA’s Title IX leaders and administration to delay the survey until after the holidays. 

Because the survey is about sexual assault, some of the climate survey’s questions are explicit and could potentially trigger a response in a person who has experienced sexual trauma. Delays this fall pushed the survey’s launch up against holidays and final exams, and the Title IX leadership, concerned about potential negative impacts on students and staff during such sensitive times, decided to take more time and conduct the survey early in 2015 using a tool adapted to Alaska’s needs. MORE...

Receptions Recognize UA Scholar Achievements

The 17th class of UA Scholars was recognized during a series of events hosted by the UA Scholars Program, President Patrick Gamble and the three main Universities. This class, graduating from high school in May 2015, will be the first to receive a total award of $12,000 under a recent policy change by the University’s Board of Regents.

The new Scholars heard from current UA Scholars, the chancellors from each campus and President Gamble about why they should consider attending UA. Current UA Scholars spoke of the opportunities they’ve received attending UA – and the money saved by that decision. The chancellors touted the research and educational opportunities available in the UA System, the benefits of smaller class sizes and the importance to Alaska of retaining top high school graduates. President Gamble spoke of the growing reputation of the University of Alaska, the importance of UA universities to Arctic research, the commitment necessary for success in higher education and the true desire to attract and retain Alaska’s top students into the university system. Each program was followed by a networking reception where Scholars had the chance to chat with representatives from each of the campuses and many top academic programs. MORE...

Regents to Review Policies and Plans at December Meeting

The Board of Regents will meet in the Lee Gorsuch Commons on the University of Alaska Anchorage campus December 11-12, 2014 for the final business meeting of the calendar year. Members of the public will have the opportunity to testify before the regents at approximately 8:45 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 11, and 10 a.m. Friday, Dec. 12.

Regents will address two new policies that affect the university community, an employee furlough policy and systemwide smoke-free, tobacco-free policy. In addition, they will approve resolutions of appreciation for retiring Vice President for Academic Affairs and Research Dana Thomas, and outgoing regents, Timothy Brady, Fuller A. Cowell, Patricia Jacobson and Kirk Wickersham.

The agenda comprises regular university business including governance reports, updates on state and federal relations, audit reports, construction reports and project change requests, and an update on Shaping Alaska's Future Theme 2 – Productive Partnerships with Alaska's Schools – priorities and progress. New board officers also will be elected.

UAA will present information on their Business Enterprise Institute during lunch on Dec. 11 and will host an evening reception at the new Alaska Airlines Center.

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