MURFREESBORO — As part of its ongoing efforts to help students succeed, Middle Tennessee State University is launching an initiative to get students more deeply engaged in pursuing their degrees.
MTSU will kick off its new curriculum improvement program, called MT Engage, at a campuswide event set for 1 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 6, on the Student Union Commons.
MT Engage is part of the university’s Quality Enhancement Plan, or QEP, an accreditation review requirement of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, the regional accreditation body for higher education institutions in the South.
The QEP “describes a carefully designed course of action that addresses a well-defined and focused topic or issue related to enhancing student learning and/or the environment supporting student learning and accomplishing the mission of the institution,” according to the accrediting association, more popularly known as SACS.
The MTSU kickoff event will introduce MT Engage to the university community, including determining the winner of a logo contest for the initiative. Guest speakers will include MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee as well as students and faculty members.
“This effort strongly complements our Quest for Student Success initiative by providing students with a high quality university experience that pushes them toward their degree and prepares them for the real world,” McPhee said. “The name itself — MT Engage — speaks to the goal of our university to provide students with an in-depth educational experience.”
The top three designs submitted for the logo contest will be showcased at the kickoff event and the concepts of each will be discussed. Voting booths will be set up for students and faculty members to vote on the logo design they like the most. The winning design will be used as the official logo for MT Engage.
Contest voters will have a chance to win prizes such as gift cards, candy, pens and koozies when they cast their vote. Light snacks will be provided. Following the event, games will be set up on the Student Union Commons until 2:30 p.m. as an opportunity for students to explore elements of MT Engage.
MTSU’s previous reaffirmation initiative resulted in the Experiential Learning program, a highly successful program in which the university emphasized hands-on activities and public service as an integral part of a student’s learning experience.
MT Engage – which is still being developed by a committee representing a cross-section of faculty, staff and students – involves students in active learning and critical reflection. This would be accomplished “by creating a culture of engagement emphasizing within the classroom and beyond the classroom experiences and reflecting on these experiences within an ePortfolio that showcases the knowledge, skills and abilities achieved.”
QEP organizers have been working closely with professor Tricia Farwell’s fall advertising campaigns class to help plan the logo contest and kick-off event for MT Engage. The students enrolled in the course make up a team that includes Chad Jones, Sonia Torres, Laura Moore, Taylor Sloan, Courtney Webb, Grace Mueller and Morgan Mosley.
“This event totally captures the essence of MT Engage. Our class was given the opportunity to engage in MTSU by helping to plan the event,” said Mosley, a senior. “Students were given the opportunity to engage by designing a logo for the contest. On top of that, every person on campus will have the opportunity to engage by voting for the logo that will be used by MT Engage.”