Meetings address updates, awards

A pair of addresses were given Tuesday at Oakland University, both of which served to update the campus community on recent changes and ongoing developments.

Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost Virinder Moudgil gave the “State of Academic Affairs Address” noon to 1 p.m. in Meadow Brook Theatre and a few hours later, from 3:30-5 p.m. in Gold Room A of the Oakland Center, College of Arts and Sciences Dean Rod Sudol led the annual CAS All-College assembly meeting.

Moudgil, who became provost in 2001, used the address to go over recent additions and upgrades to OU’s academic community and praised its many “remarkable” achievements.

“This university would not be what it is if we didn’t have shared governance,” Moudgil said, adding that faculty is the “center of our universe.”

He said there’s always room for improvement, however, noting that OU has become “tuition intensive,” with tuition accounting for nearly 80 percent of the general fund, and that its first-year retention rates are currently 30 percent.

“(OU) may not be the best, but you can make it better,” Moudgil told staff and faculty.

The CAS assembly meeting also touched on recent successes and plans for the future.

Sudol discussed substantial enrollment growth for the college with a 10.1 percent increase from 2009 to this year.

Sudol also reviewed plans for the off-campus course location in Mount Clemens as well as various renovation needs.

Physics Professor Ken Elder presented the Marian P. Wilson Award to David Garfinkle, also a professor of physics, on behalf of Garfinkle’s recently published book entitled “Three Steps to the Universe: From the Sun to Black Holes to the Mystery of Dark Matter.”

“The really nice thing is that these things are read by my colleagues,” Garfinkle said. “So to be honored this way by other faculty that think my book is wonderful, that’s the greatest kind of honor to get.”