Students in Science Lab

Provost Report to the Faculty for January 2012

US News & World Report has placed Gardner-Webb’s graduate, online programs in Business on its 2012 Honor Roll, one of only 14 institutions recognized nationally. Gardner-Webb ranked number 1 nationally in the category of “Student and Technological Services.”

I am grateful for the hard work of the Godbold School of Business under the leadership of Dean Negbenebor and to the outstanding support services of our Department of Technology Services under the leadership of Mr. Joey Bridges, Assoc. VP for Technology Services, and to their respective faculty and staffs for helping make this recognition possible.

Sabbatical leaves have been granted to the following members of the faculty, pending final approval of the Board of Trustees at their winter meeting next month: Dr. Teresa Phillips has proposed a major revision of her doctoral dissertation, Sex and the Lettered City, with a view toward a book length publication.

Sabbatical is scheduled for Fall 2012; Dr. Scott Schauf has proposed research and writing toward a book exploring the theology of Acts in the context of other ancient historiographical writings. Sabbatical is scheduled for Spring 2013.

On recommendation of the Faculty Development and Improvement of Instruction Committee, sabbaticals were approved last year for Dr. Kent Blevins and Prof. Doug Knotts, bringing the total 2012-13 faculty sabbaticals to the maximum allowance of four.

A planning committee appointed by the President has tentatively scheduled ribbon cuttings for the Tucker Student Center and Science Building Annex for the afternoon of Tuesday, August 28. This is the first week of Fall Semester classes and the same day as Fall Convocation. We do not anticipate canceling classes for the event at this time (in spite of earlier information to the contrary), although it is likely that students assisting with related events will need to be excused from class.

The University has extended an invitation to Mr. Greg Davenport, MPAS, PA-C, to assume the role of Director for the University’s proposed Physician Assistant Program. Mr. Davenport is currently Academic Director of the PA Program at Harding University in Searcy, Arkansas. He will join the University community full-time on April 1 but will begin work on behalf of the University part-time immediately.

Below are some online resources that might be of interest to members of our faculty:

The Open Course Library is a free online resource whose goal is to provide course planning materials for 81 high-enrollment, general education (and pre-college) courses. The collection includes syllabi, course activities, readings and assessments. Access the library at

Joan Flaherty, assistant professor in the College of Management and Economics at the University of Guelp, has written an insightful and suggestive article for The Chronicle of Higher Education dealing with the tidal wave of student ill-mannered behavior in the digital age. View the article at

Another helpful Chronicle article is “How to Read a Student Evaluation,” by David D. Perlmutter, Director of the School of Journalism and Mass Communication and a professor at the University of Iowa. Perlmutter finds a nice balance between teasing out the useful data and not reading too much into student evaluations and comments. View at

All Gardner-Webb faculty have an online subscription to The Chronicle of Higher Education. If you have difficulty accessing the site, please contact a member of the Dover Library Staff for assistance.

Respectfully submitted,
Ben Leslie