Students choose Ohio Wesleyan University because of the quality of its academic program and the value of its educational experience. Our fundamental liberal arts orientation is enhanced by our distinctive commitment to helping students prepare for the professions and for multifaceted careers within various disciplines and by our emphasis on civic engagement through outreach, internships, and service learning. The OWU faculty is committed to a model of teaching and learning that extends beyond formal classroom instruction—one that places at its heart a vital role for mentorship and advising, as well as student life, athletics, and other co-curricular activities. Enhancing the OWU academic program through investment in the curriculum and the faculty will strengthen our ability to attract the best, most diverse student body and prepare the most talented graduates for leadership in the future.

A New OWU Curricular Plan

Ohio Wesleyan University will develop, implement, and secure resources for a bold student learning initiative that blends theory and practice, provides every student with significant international exposure and engagement, and requires each student to complete a series of engaged learning experiences that complement the traditional liberal arts and prepare OWU graduates for leadership in all sectors of 21st-century society. Faculty members and OWU administrators will serve as mentors and guides for students in a range of activities such as internships and apprenticeships, volunteer service, study travel, study abroad, undergraduate research, leadership development, and artistic experiences. Some opportunities will be fulfilled on or near the campus during the academic term; others will take place far away from the campus during breaks or during a term away. Some will be fulfilled in groups, while others will be individual endeavors. Some will be fulfilled as part of courses in the curriculum; others will offer opportunities beyond the curriculum. Funds will be available through a competitive grant process to support students and faculty in imagining and creating the most robust possible experiences. The plan will require a substantial investment in advising and support for students and in resources that create innovative and productive opportunities for engaged learning at OWU.

Specific objectives include:

  • Enhance curriculum to require every student to complete a series of engaged learning experiences that blend theory and practice
  • Enhance the international dimension of our curriculum, including international study-travel experiences, so that every student is introduces to global issues and international perspectives
  • Revitalize and strengthen the Sagan Colloquium
  • Develop endowment to fully fund the new OWU curricular plan
  • Develop a home for the OWU Plan
  • Educate students in the use of current technologies as a part of their development as learners and thinkers

The Faculty

Fulfillment of the New OWU curricular plan requires increasing the size of our faculty in order to reduce the size of classes and to enhance opportunities for tutorials, seminars, directed readings, independent studies, and mentoring for individual, engaged learning experiences. In addition, we will increase resources available for faculty professional development and scholarly work. We will focus growth of the faculty in departments where class sections are large and where there is significant instruction by part-time and adjunct faculty. We will be especially interested in providing professional development and adding faculty positions in ways that increase opportunities for students to connect theory and practice and in ways that enhance international opportunities for our students.

Specific objectives include:

  • Improve student:faculty ratio
  • Increase the number of tenured and tenure-track faculty positions to 155
  • Increase support of faculty professional development and scholarly activity
  • Increase support of departments and programs, with particular focus on supplies, equipment, technology, library resources, and student participation in professional conferences
  • Ensure that faculty compensation increases accordingly as the OWU competitive position advances and the University achieves a new peer set
  • Increase the number of classes in sections of fewer than 20 students

Academic Facilities

Ohio Wesleyan University has substantial needs in its academic facilities. OWU will invest in academic facilities to create state-of-the-art venues for instruction, including creating more space for seminars and group work, and bringing academic technology into classrooms across the campus.

Specific objectives include:

  • Renovate and reopen Merrick Hall, perhaps as home of the New OWU curricular plan
  • Renovate and make University Hall fully accessible
  • Devote resources to other academic venues, specifically Phillips Hall, Chappelear Drama Center, and Sanborn Hall, to create better teaching spaces
  • Install appropriate, current technology in every teaching venue on campus