Monday, August 12, 2002
Mechanical engineering doctorate approved
By Jeff Samoray, OU Web Writer
Oakland University students soon will have expanded course offerings, opportunities for research and interaction with local industries as the OU Board of Trustees authorized the School of Engineering and Computer Science to offer a doctorate in mechanical engineering. The board approved the proposed degree at its formal meeting on Aug. 7.
Faculty in the Department of Mechanical Engineering have been supervising Ph.D. students in systems engineering with various specialization areas and other interdisciplinary programs since 1972. The School of Engineering and Computer Science also offers a Ph.D. degree in systems engineering, which is an interdisciplinary program. The Ph.D. in mechanical engineering is expected to receive better external recognition and attract more students from local industries as well as across the nation.
The program is designed to prepare students for careers in industrial or governmental research and development laboratories or for academic positions. The program also will serve to build collaborative relationships with business, industry, education and government, and meet regional demand for qualified mechanical engineers in one of the country's fastest growing high technology and manufacturing areas. The program could begin as soon as the fall 2002 semester.
Rainy Day Fund
The board approved the establishment of a "rainy day fund" with $1.5 million to be transferred from fiscal year 2002 year-end budget savings. During the last fiscal year, the university generated revenues of $1.5 million in excess of its general fund budget. The excess was due to enrollment growth that exceeded the budget target and indirect cost recovery revenues on external grants and contracts greater than budget. Due to continued budget pressures facing the state and the impact this may have on public universities, the university will create this fund with the excess revenues. The $1.5 million represents 1.25 percent of the fiscal year 2003 general fund budget.
Standards of Satisfactory Academic Progress
Updated Standards of Satisfactory Academic Progress also were approved. The university recommended updating these standards to address new regulations issued by the United States Department of Education. The revisions will remove administrative barriers for students, promote better customer service and communications between students and the university and implement a system that will not penalize students who perform poorly early in their academic careers.
Donor recognition societies
The board approved the revision of the names of some donor recognition societies. The societies emphasize philanthropic giving to the university and provide consistent and appropriate recognition for donors. The revisions will help focus donors on the university's larger needs while enabling the university to thank and recognize donors appropriately for their generosity.
Other items approved by the board were:
The full meeting agenda and most supporting materials are available online at the Board of Trustees Web site. All board materials are available for review in the Oakland University Board Office, 203 Wilson Hall. For more information, contact Rhonda Saunders at (248) 370-3112 or email@example.com.
- Recommendation of final undergraduate and graduate school reports, dated April 27, 2002.
- Recommendation to accept gifts to OU and the OU Foundation for the periods of April 1 through June 30, 2002, and to accept grants and contracts to OU for the period of May 1 through June 30, 2002.
- Board members for the Public School Academies.
- The addition of seventh and eighth grades for Dove Academy of Detroit.
- The addition of the Detroit Academy of Arts and Sciences as a Public School Academy.
- The Meadow Brook Subdivision Financing Guarantees.