CGS Dean Shares General Education Insights with a Global Audience

MCKNIGHTFrom California to Chile to Saudi Arabia — over the last semester, Dean Natalie McKnight has been sharing CGS’ knowledge on assessment and Capstone projects all across the globe

In January, at the 103rd Annual Meeting of the Association of American Colleges and Universities in San Francisco, California, Dean McKnight spoke on a panel of college administrators talking about “Interdisciplinary Capstones for All Students.” The panel was organized to promote the use of Capstone projects like ours here at CGS–touted as one of the “Ten Best Practices in Higher Education.” McKnight spoke on the panel alongside representatives from Elon University, Champlain College, and Portland State University– all schools with a well-established interdisciplinary capstone program and with valuable lessons to offer other institutions.

In March, Dean McKnight found herself travelling to Santiago, Chile to a conference at Universidad Diego Portales as the plenary speaker. The presentation, entitled “General Education: Now More Than Ever,” was to talk about the benefits of the two-year program here at CGS. Dean McKnight discussed the significance of general studies to higher education, and why a general education is so vital to the success of students around the globe.

In April, Dean McKnight traveled again to Effat University in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Since 2014, CGS has been working with Effat University  on the development of its general education program, and CGS faculty visit the University each year. After watching Dean McKnight’s presentation at the AAC&U Conference in January, administrators from Effat University asked Dean McKnight to share CGS’ approach to Capstone, e-Portfolios, and assessing the effectiveness of its education. 

CGS’  general education program equips students to solve real world issues–quandaries like hunger in Boston, bike safety, deforestation, and fuel alternatives. By applying their knowledge of humanities, natural sciences, social sciences, students learn interdisciplinary problem-solving.