‘Producing (even more) highly accomplished graduates’

“If our region is to prosper, it will be because (Purdue Calumet is) producing highly accomplished graduates who can attract employers with better jobs…”

I made that comment during our Jan. 31st Spring Term Faculty/Staff Convocation, and I did so within the context of discussing campus strategic efforts to continue to grow, strengthen and reposition Purdue Calumet as a full-service, regional university. Key to our repositioning is the success we experience raising the bar of what our graduates can learn and do.

We take great pride in presenting our graduates a Purdue degree. The problem we face, however, is that too many of our students take too long to complete their degrees, or do not complete them at all.

We acknowledge that there are noteworthy reasons why so many of our students do not graduate on time—personal, family, work-related, among others. But we also know that preparation and motivation drive the bus to degree completion.

With our state and nation setting goals for increasing the number of graduates we produce, and with plans in the works to tie those goals to our university’s state budget appropriation in the form of performance-based funding, it is clear that degree completion should be a top priority.

In the online Winter issue of Purdue Calumet INSIGHT magazine, the feature story, headlined Raising the Bar, reveals some of our strategic efforts for attracting more prepared and motivated students to our campus to earn a Purdue degree. You can read that story at the following link:    http://webs.purduecal.edu/insight/2011/01/07/raising-the-bar/

Our efforts to raise the bar of accomplishment are repositioning us to attract a new pool of students who are a good fit for the challenging, high quality Purdue education we offer.

Additionally, as I expressed Jan. 31, Purdue Calumet is well-positioned to make a difference expanding the college educated population, as more than two-thirds of our enrollees represent the first generation in their families to attend college. Universities like Purdue Calumet provide opportunities that may not otherwise be available for such students.

The ability to increase our number of graduates not only enables our region to prosper, it also equips more of our citizens to participate in that prosperity.


Howard Cohen