Priority 1: Faculty
Strategic Priority 1: Recruit, retain, and develop one of the great Catholic college faculties in America.
We believe that Benedictine College’s educational experience is enhanced by all aspects of our mission: community, faith and scholarship.
Community:The first step to achieving academic excellence in a community of faith and scholarship is the ongoing development of one of the great Catholic college faculties in America. We will provide the conditions that support intensive preparation for teaching, ongoing pedagogical improvement, significant engagement with students both inside and outside the classroom, and active professional scholarship. We will provide the tools—both traditional and advanced—that enable faculty to stay current in their fields, to engage their students in substantial and significant projects, and to keep abreast of changes and developments that will impact their areas. We will recruit for greatness and reward excellence until we have achieved distinction.
Faith:Benedictine College is committed to sharing with all members of our community the beauty and mystery of the Catholic faith as revealed in the person of Jesus Christ and handed down through the teachings of the Church. As a Catholic college, we consider faith and reason as “two wings on which the human spirit rises to the contemplation of the truth.” [John Paul II, Fides et Ratio] Benedictine 2020 is aimed at fostering this understanding of the distinctive benefit of a Catholic education. Our distinctive Benedictine approach to education culminates in graduates who are committed to living their lives “so that in all things God may be glorified.” [Rule of St. Benedict] The College welcomes people of all faith, while it seeks in its members a personal commitment to the ideals and principles of the Catholic tradition and expression of these in action. We will foster an authentically Catholic commitment to academic freedom for all members of our community, based on the honest pursuit of the truth, fearless in the knowledge that all truth comes from God. We will recruit faculty who understand and endorse this vision of the integral unity of the truth.
Scholarship:The love of learning is a crucial Benedictine value. Academic excellence at Benedictine College is driven by faculty who exhibit strong commitment in their teaching and scholarship to provide an environment that prepares students with the best that has been thought and written. Faculty will develop graduates who are critical thinkers who read, speak, and write well, and are personally and professionally prepared for life’s challenges on a local and global scale. As faculty at a Catholic college, we embrace the distinctive challenge of Catholic education articulated by Pope Benedict XVI: to form the will, as well as the mind, of the students within our care.
a) Achieve a student/faculty ratio, with an appropriate percentage of faculty being full-time, that allows for sufficient faculty attention to the academic needs of the students of the college.
b) Ensure that faculty has adequate time to prepare for their classes, respond to student work, engage students outside the classroom, and remain professionally active in their fields.
c) Implement and support practices that maximize student learning, including policies that ensure sufficient rigor in the academic program. Support a college-wide focus on developing students’ writing and communication skills. Enhance the library as a significant resource for the entire academic program. Use ongoing program and general education assessments to provide the basis for systematic and regular curricular review.
d) Evaluate the criteria for tenure and promotion to assure that the criteria and reward structure align with and support the practices associated with academic excellence. Incorporate rigorous and systematic review of teaching into the promotion and tenure process. Provide faculty incentives to write, publish, and present at academic conferences to increase scholarly activity.
e) Expand mission training, spiritual formation, and professional development opportunities for faculty and staff.