Commission on the Future of the University Issues Draft Report, Plans for Batten School

A news article by Lincoln Foran

The Commission on the Future of the University has issued a first draft of a proposal outlining short, intermediate, and long-term goals for each school in the University, including ambitious plans for the new Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy.

The Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy was announced in April 2007. The school’s namesake, College alumnus Frank Batten, Sr., provided the financial support for its establishment with a $100 million gift, the largest in the University’s history.

Within the next two years, the University will seek the permission of the Faculty Senate, the State Council on Higher Education in Virginia and the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to establish the program and begin hiring a dean, expanding the faculty and providing support staff.

Over the next six years, the school, which accepted 30 UVA students last March into its inaugural five-year Master in Public Policy program, will expand to include a “Leadership Scholars program”, competitive-admissions major in Public Policy for undergraduates, and programs for graduate students. The Leadership Scholars program is to allow students majoring in other departments to obtain a concentration in leadership.

Programs for graduate students will also be established. Students with a Bachelor’s degree and some work experience will be admitted to a Master’s in Public Policy program, and be able to also pursue degree from another of the University’s schools. A “Master’s in Foreign Service or Global Affairs” will be available to students wishing to work abroad. A post-doctoral program in public policy and a one-year Master of Public Leadership degree for professional students are also planned.

Ten-year goals for the Batten School include expansion to an undergraduate student population of 225 and a graduate student population of 165 with eighteen full-time faculty members. The document recommends the establishment of research centers for issues of public concern, including: education, healthcare, energy policy, biotechnology and international policy. Less tangible hopes are to develop “pedagogies…designed for 21st-century students,” and to encourage public service by becoming actively involved in local, national, and international programs.

Commission Draft Report

Batten School Report

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