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Senate Summary | December 2023

If you missed the Academic Senate meeting on Dec. 4, 2023, or need a refresher, then keep reading for the highlights from the meeting. For more information on the Academic Senate, click here.

Debate Calendar

New Undergraduate Certificate: Dialogue, Conflict Resolution, and Mediation

Natasha Seegert, associate professor and lecturer, Department of Communication presented the following:

Undergraduate students earning the Interdisciplinary Certificate in Dialogue, Conflict Resolution, and Mediation gain practical skills in understanding the roots of conflict and how to facilitate conflict resolution. This certificate provides students with skills that can resolve differences in the workplace, in the community, with friends and family and beyond.

In this certificate, students will do the following:

  • Learn skills and theory to effectively respond to conflict and facilitate constructive dialogue.
  • Learn how to navigate challenging conversations at work, in the community, and at home.
  • Learn how to assess and diagnose conflicts and issues from several perspectives.
  • Learn mediation skills that can contribute to becoming a professional mediator.

Continuing Center Authorization: Utah Exchange for Interdisciplinary Science (NEXUS)

Lori Kowaleski-Jones, professor in the Department of Family and Consumer Studies, director of the Interdisciplinary Exchange for Utah Science (NEXUS) and executive director of Wasatch Front Research Data Center (WFRDC) presented about NEXUS and Continuing Authorization Status.

New Degree: Bachelor of Science in Bioinformatics

Aaron Bertram from the Department of Mathematics presented the following:

The bioinformatics degree program in the Department of Mathematics will provide students with the education necessary to succeed in this growing and dynamic field. Building off a core group of mathematics, biology and computer science courses, students will engage deeply with real-world problems as they chart their path through the degree program. Interdisciplinary in nature, with research, internship and career support, the bioinformatics degree will prepare students for future career success in a growing and well-compensated field.

New Degree: Master of Engineering Management

Mark Minor, Mechanical Engineering Curriculum Committee Chair, proposed the following:

To create a coursework-only Master of Engineering Management (MEM) degree, which will be directed by the Department of Mechanical Engineering. The MEM will be the first engineering management degree in Utah and be offered both on-campus and on-line through University Connected Learning. The MEM is expected to have a high demand with 10 to 20 on-campus students and 30 to 50 online students. Students from all STEM disciplines can directly apply. Students from other backgrounds may need some preliminary courses to be eligible for admission. The MEM degree requires a total of 30 credit hours (18 core hours, 6 hours of engineering electives, and 6 hours of electives). The 18 core hours consist of 3 credit hours in each of the following six areas selected from courses offered by different departments and colleges across campus: management of engineers, managing projects, product/service development, production and information systems, financial decision making and quantitative decision making.

New Biomedical Engineering Graduate Certificate in Regulatory Affairs in Healthcare

Tomasz Petelenz, Ph.D., faculty member, and David Grainger, Ph.D., department chair, presented the following:

The Graduate Certificate in Regulatory Affairs in Healthcare aims to build a nationally recognized program that educates biomedical engineers, pharmacy, and life science graduates specializing in regulatory affairs. The certificate will provide evidence and recognition of a completed educational curriculum in regulatory affairs for students planning employment in the biomedical or biopharmaceutical industry. The certificate has been developed in response to the biomedical industry's strong demand for regulatory specialists. The certificate will also increase the number of students seeking courses from the BME Department and expand collaboration with industry partners and professional organizations, such as the Regulatory Affairs Professional Society (RAPS.)

To earn the certificate, students will take foundational and elective courses covering fundamentals of the U.S. and international healthcare products regulations, principles of bioethics and human subject protection from research risks, risk management, organization and management of clinical studies and other health care regulatory topics. The certificate will be open to matriculated and non-matriculated students meeting the University of Utah admission requirements.