External Review

Dear Colleagues:

I want to thank you for agreeing to join a distinguished team of academic leaders who will make a special visit to the University of Colorado Boulder to help us think through some exciting future possibilities on our campus.

For a decade and more, UCB has been in discussions about how to move forward in the important intellectual and educational area that is marked off by such terms as information, communication, journalism, media, and technology.  We have convened various faculty committees and task forces.  We have heard proposals for a College of Information, a College devoted to Information, Communication, and Technology, and a College of Media Design and the Arts.  In the past few years, following upon a university decision to reorganize our School of Journalism and Mass Communication and our recognition that we needed to forge an identity in this field, this conversation has taken on new life and new urgency.

This review, which is being managed by our program review team, is extraordinary in a number of ways.  We have not created a new college here for decades.  There are, of course, concerns within individual units that might be moved within a new administrative structure.  There are many issues and questions yet to be addressed.  We will be asking you and your colleagues to read various documents that have arisen in this process and then to meet with appropriate constituent groups and campus leadership to discuss such questions as:

  1. What is the best way for the University of Colorado Boulder to serve its educational and scholarly missions in this large domain?
  2. What are the strengths and weaknesses of the current proposal?
  3. What advice would you have about implementing such important changes?

We hope you will be able to help us open up large conversations around shared intellectual and educational concerns and possibilities.

While we would welcome your suggestions about which groups you would like to meet, we will be setting up meetings with the provost and his team, with the relevant deans, with two faculty task forces, with interested department chairs, and with faculty engaged in curriculum development in this area; there will also be an open meeting to which all faculty on campus will be invited.

We are excited about your visit and anxious to hear your recommendations.  You will have an opportunity to meet with the provost at the close of your stay; you will also be provided with time to begin drafting your report while the entire team is still on campus.