Regents approve new multicultural degree program

The program will start in the fall through the College of Education and Human Development.

The University of Minnesota Board of Regents Educational and Policy Committee unanimously approved a new post-baccalaureate program in Innovations in Undergraduate Multicultural Teaching and Learning Thursday. Post-baccalaureate degrees in the program will be achieved through the College of Education and Human Development. Senior Vice President and Provost Tom Sullivan said the program, which had the support of President Bob Bruininks , would be beneficial to the University. âÄúThis is a reaction to a strong, emerging new department,âÄù Sullivan said. âÄúItâÄôs a win-win for the expertise of faculty in the department, as well as market demand.âÄù The program, which will begin in the fall 2009 semester, will be focused on training future undergraduate faculty for innovative teaching and learning strategies in multicultural studies. Board chairman David Larson said the program reflects the cultural diversity the University has experienced. The increase in the Asian, African and Latin American populations has had a large impact on the University, Larson said. âÄúThereâÄôs an increase in the multicultural nature of society,âÄù Larson said. âÄúThe University is responding accordingly.âÄù The program will not add additional faculty to the College of Education and Human Development, and will not be very costly, Larson said. Larson was unable to provide exact numbers, but said there will be limited administrative costs associated with its creation. Each year, academic programs are added and removed, depending on market research and need expressed by faculty, Larson said. âÄúWe donâÄôt teach engineering students to use slide rulers as measurements anymore âÄî that would be outdated,âÄù Larson said. âÄúWe have to continuously work to stay current.âÄù