UND’s Core Values – We Need Your Input

Overview: The Strategic Planning Committee believes that UND’s Core Values flow from its educational mission. The Committee has developed a preliminary statement of UND’s Core Values. This Campus Conversation creates an opportunity for the campus community to provide its insights on this Core Values statement.

Draft Core Values for Consideration: 

At UND, our Core Values include:

  • A liberal arts educational foundation that nurtures life-long learning.
  • An understanding and appreciation of diversity.
  • A welcoming, inclusive, and supportive environment.
  • An enthusiasm for discovery, creativity and innovation.
  • Collaboration and connectedness.
  • Our service to the state, region, nation, and global community.

Questions to Consider:

  1. How does the UND community currently embody and express these core values?
  2. How should the UND community aspire to embody and express our core values?
  3. How would we measure our success in achieving our core values?
  4. What, if anything, would you add or change in these statements of our core values that embodies or expresses who we are as a University community?

Please provide feedback on this topic at one of the Campus Conversations (check events page for times and locations), add comments below, or send comments to UND.strategicplanning@und.edu. Please respond by November 1, 2016. Thank you!

* If responding to a specific question, please note the question you are responding to. 

In the interest of gathering constructive feedback, please refrain from using profanity or abusive language in your comments.

8 thoughts on “UND’s Core Values – We Need Your Input

  • October 23, 2016 at 2:50 pm

    My heartfelt thanks to all the folks who have given of their time to thoughtfully construct the draft of the core values. I also appreciate the opportunity to weigh in as my schedule has made it difficult to attend these sessions. As chair of my department, I have been engaged in many conversations recently about distressing events on campus. These conversations have been with faculty, staff, and students, and they are very concerned about the climate on campus and in the broader community. Another lens I use is the current national context, in which it is clear that many of our citizens lack the necessary skills to think critically in a “post-factual” world. That makes our endeavor to name these values seem that much more significant. With this in mind, I have the following thoughts:
    1) While life-long learning is laudable, perhaps it is not sufficient. I value a liberal arts educational foundation that also promotes critical thinking and an engaged citizenry.
    2) Understanding and appreciation of diversity is also important, but does not feel sufficient. It is equally important to understand how privilege operates. To borrow social work accreditation language, we are called to understand AND dismantle the “mechanisms of oppression and discrimination.” As a result, “justice” is one of our profession’s core values.
    3) Similarly, with regard to the third bullet, I wonder about its sufficiency. A welcoming, supportive and inclusive environment for whom? Perhaps the phrase “that honors and affirms diversity and difference” could be added.
    A final suggestion would be to have very concise (three words or less) for each value, with the longer explanation listed below each of them. That kind of format makes it easier for all of us to memorize the values and carry them with us.
    Thank you again for the opportunity to participate in this process through this site.

    • October 28, 2016 at 11:11 am

      Thank you Carenlee for these suggestions and insight. The Strategic Planning Committee was presented with a revised set of Core Values this Wednesday based on all the feedback gathered from the Campus Conversations and other engagement sessions as well as this blog. There were common threads that rose to the top and those were used to revise the Core Values. If you haven’t already seen the final revised Core Values yet, the summary of the meeting should be posted here and on the website soon. Thank you again for your participation in this process!

  • November 1, 2016 at 3:20 pm

    I would like to offer a specific suggestion with regard to the last core value listed above: “our service to the state, region, nation, and globally.” As a state-funded university the value of providing service to North Dakota and beyond should be among our highest priorities. Given this high priority on service, I was one of many UND faculty and staff who were extremely disappointed with our Interim President’s decision last spring to suspend enrollment in UND’s B.M. Music Therapy degree program.

    Many years ago, as an 8th- grade student writing a “career notebook,” I undertook some middle-school-level research about music therapy as a potential career. Music was an important part of my life (I played piano, organ, and clarinet), but I was also interested in psychology and mental health. Through reading, discussions with several teachers, and interviews with patients and staff at the state mental hospital in my home state of Kansas, I learned about the emerging discipline of music therapy and its potential for engaging and strengthening the coping resources of adults and children with a variety of mental health challenges.

    Over the years my career plans shifted somewhat, eventually leading to an academic career in clinical psychology and medicine. However, I have remained interested in the field of music therapy – which has become considerably more mature and evidence-based than when I first wrote about it in 8th grade. I was delighted to learn that UND offered a degree in music therapy and proud that the large majority of music therapists employed in North Dakota had received their training at UND. Thus it was an unpleasant shock when Interim President Schafer announced last spring that enrollment into UND’s Music Therapy degree program would be suspended. Despite the spirited defense of the music therapy program by enthusiastic students, faculty, and other supporters, it appears that the decision to terminate the program still stands.

    I am writing to request respectfully that President Kennedy reconsider the decision to suspend enrollment in UND’s Music Therapy Program. At the very least, proponents of the program should be allowed to present their case for reinstatement, just as the athletic programs did several weeks ago. Given the high and growing proportion of older persons residing in North Dakota, and the special ability of music therapy to reach and aid persons with dementia and other age-related disorders, the need for and appreciation of music therapy seems likely not only to continue, but to grow substantially in coming years. I cannot think of any greater form of service to our region, state, and nation than the therapeutic services provided by skilled and dedicated UND-trained musical therapists — not to mention the overall enhanced quality of life provided by UND’s Music Department as a whole!

    Thank you for this opportunity to express support for the reinstatement of UND’s Music Therapy degree program, as an important service component in the strategic vision of One UND.

    • November 2, 2016 at 2:13 pm

      Thank you Sharon for sharing your comments and suggestions with us. All information gathered via the Campus Conversations, emails and blogs will be shared with the President, Steering and Planning Committees as part of the input for planning. Thank you again for your participation in the process!

  • November 4, 2016 at 6:44 pm

    Core Value — Diversity
    There are many ways to construe diversity. Recruitment of a diverse population is a critical one, but, as recent events have demonstrated, many UND students need thorough education in fostering diversity and avoiding discrimination and stereotyping. This is difficult to do in the breadth of most curricula, but one group of majors must learn these attitudes, concepts and skills or fail to obtain professional licensure. I refer to the health-related disciplines, in particular Music Therapy. Students in these areas face and are trained in stringent standards of professional behavior that by Federal law require equity, fair treatment and confidentiality in patient care. Failure to observe these standards can result in denial or loss of professional licensure. These students contribute a core population who understands what diversity is and the attitudes its encouragement and support require. It is important to retain and strengthen such programs, in particular Music Therapy, as part of fostering inclusiveness at UND.

    • November 7, 2016 at 2:15 pm

      Gary, thank you for your input. Comments specific to the Music Therapy program are being shared with the Arts and Sciences Dean’s Office, the Provost and the President. Your participation in the process is appreciated.

  • November 4, 2016 at 6:59 pm

    Core Value — Discovery, Creativity and Innovation

    In several areas, UNDs students have achieved national recognition through contests and creativity. One area that has often been overlooked is Music Therapy, a rapidly evolving discipline that is on the cutting edge of new therapeutic practices and that requires creativity even to practice. Every UND Music Therapy undergraduate student must complete a research project as a curricular requirement. These undergraduates participate in national research and writing competitions and have presented papers at national professional meetings. Our students won the American Music Therapy Association E. Thayer Gaston Research Award two years in a row. UND’s program has a record of national achievement in discovery, creativity and innovation with few undergarduate rivals. It fulfills this core value admirably and must be retained.

  • November 4, 2016 at 7:38 pm

    Core Value — Service to the state, region, nation, and global community.

    UND Music Therapy faculty and students provide an average of 900 hours or roughly $136,000 of free clinical services to people in Greater Grand Forks, as well as rural areas in the region, as services on the University’s behalf. These service placements (and our students) serve over 100 vulnerable members of the disabled community, the elderly, hospitalized patients and several other populations. In their required six-month internship, UND’s MT students provide similar care at centers nationwide. Our program is regarded as a premier program in the nation, and our students have been actively sought by internship programs. In addition, UND’s program introduced Music Therapy to North Dakota, induced our state to be the first in the nation to develop professional licensure for Music Therapy and has now furnished over half of the numerous music therapists practicing statewide. Other graduates practice and serve at centers across the U.S. The phenomenal success at UND of Music Therapy in its incorporation of service with education must not be allowed to flag.

    Core Value — Collaboration and Connectedness

    In addition to the connections described above, UND’s Music Therapy program has taken its proper place among the other health-related disciplines. With Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy, Psychology, and Speech and Language, Music Therapy faculty were integral in developing a collaborative Interprofessional Healthcare course that is now required of all Music Therapy students in addition to its inclusion in the other areas’ curricula. In addition, the discipline’s contributions to understanding of differently-abled populations have also led to requirement of the Introduction to Music Therapy course for all Music Education students. This brings me back to the first point I made above—that Music Therapy teaches and actively involves students in positive and therapeutic interaction with populations whose diversity extends over boundaries of race, ethnicity, age, ability and many other handicaps. Music Therapy provides a professional level of education in acceptance and assistance that must be retained at UND.


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