North Dakota University System Joins LEAP General Education Initiative
BISMARCK, N.D. - The North Dakota University System recently joined the Liberal Education and America's Promise - or LEAP - initiative created to align college general education requirements with the needs of today's global economy.
A model advanced by the Association of American Colleges and Universities, LEAP emphasizes the importance of making these foundational higher education courses more relevant to current workplace expectations. The NDUS is the sixth state higher education system to become part of LEAP. Private and tribal colleges in North Dakota also are partners in this initiative.
"In 2009, University System faculty members began looking at ways to better align general education requirements with the skills and abilities now required for career and personal success," said Bill Goetz, NDUS chancellor. "This grassroots effort positioned the University System for acceptance into LEAP, and participation in this ‘best-practice' initiative will help students be better prepared for the workforce."
"Through LEAP, the University System will have access to some of the leading national experts and research on general education," said Mike Hillman, NDUS vice chancellor for academic and student affairs. "We will reap tremendous benefits from this new relationship with the Association of American Colleges and Universities."
Three statewide general education summits have been held since the spring of 2009. NDUS and tribal college faculty members involved in the events are committed to the development of standardized, statewide general education requirements among the institutions, even though they have varying academic missions.
The fourth general education summit will be hosted by Bismarck State College, Bismarck, N.D., Sept. 17, 2010. The LEAP model, which focuses on essential learning outcomes, will be a focus of the event.