November 7, 2015

Dear NGS Faculty:

Fall is quickly leaving us here in New England and with the days being shorter and the cool, crisp air, it is inevitable that the white stuff (snow) will be coming soon. For now, I'll try to enjoy the late fall, all we are doing here at NGS, and my new activity. Here's some fun information for you-I am finishing up a "Learn to Curl" class on Su nday evenings here at the Cape Cod Curling Club in Falmouth, MA. What a great way to meet new people and try something different! There aren't many places to curl in the U.S. and I decided to take advantage of the Falmouth site. Did you know its origin dates back to the 1500's with Scottish ties?

Today there are about 1.3 million curlers around the world with two-thirds of whom are in Canada and now I am one of them! I tease everyone in the office that I may be off to the Olympics  soon. Our new NGS Enrollment Director, John Alonso, had the idea for me to wear NGS in large letters across the back of my fleece vest to promote our programs if I end up in training. Thanks, John, and I'll be sure to let everyone know if I really need a sponsor.

This month, I have four items to write about in my faculty letter:
1.            Student Point of Contact
2.            Updates to Forms in Academic Affairs
3.            Communication
4.            Reminder about Posting Grades and Naming Webinars
  1. Student Point of Contact
    The Curriculum Development Committee (CDC) updated the description of   the Student Point of Contact (POC) in the Student Handbook late summer. I was excited to learn about this leadership program within the cohorts and can attest to its value. Positive and constructive comments from POC's have reached me by email and through phone calls, and I would like to stress to faculty the importance of  the role  of the cohort POC. Faculty Leads, please be sure to contact either MJ (for BSc and MS) or Pippi  ( for  DBA), so they can add the student name and contact information to the posted cohort schedule. Here is the explanation of the NGS POC:
    Student Point of Contact (POC): During the cohort Orientation course, the NGS Project Faculty Lead will discuss the role of the cohort's Student Point of Contact (POC). The POC is the student nominated by the members of the cohort to serve as a designated Class Representative for the duration of the program schedule. The NGS project Faculty Lead will provide the contact information (POC name, email) to Academic Affairs and the Program Chair by the end of the first course. Academic Affairs will add the POC name to the cohort schedule. Students can bring cohort feedback and issues, both positive and constructive, to the POC. The POC serves as the individual who collects comments and summarizes them and serves as the primary interface between the cohort, Faculty, and NGS. The POC communicates with Faculty, but the Faculty will provide documentation of an issue that cannot be resolved or answered or one that is beyond the realm of POC or Faculty responsibility. The Faculty will then contact Student Services and work with the appropriate NGS Department (Academic Affairs, Student Services, Information Technology) or Administration, as required to reach a resolution. Faculty are also required to be provided  a summary of the POC issues at the end of each course using the required Course Handoff Form. If the cohort is part of a face-to-face program, then the POC becomes a member of the Student Quality Advisory Council (see page 81 of the Catalog and Student Handbook 2014-2016).
  2. Updates to Forms in Academic Affairs
    First, the CDC and Program Chairs have completed the revisions to the Course Handoff Form and I will be working with Elaine in IT to have the revised form online. AA program administrators can also send it out to faculty in an email. Second, the End of Course Evaluation form is currently being edited with feedback from CDC and Program Chairs. Finally, the third form that will be addressed is           one  for  the Dean and Program Chairs to use when evaluating faculty. I will write more about this in the next letter, as it is connected to Faculty training and evaluation. 
  3. Communication
    I am eager to meet and speak with our NGS faculty. I am trying to develop a timeline and schedule to speak to each 
    of you either before or after you teach a course. This is a priority for me and I would also like you to reach out to me and introduce yourself if we have not connected. I know you communicate with your Program Chairs and our Administrative Assistants (MJ and Pippi), but I am eager to speak with you about all the positives about teaching our NGS students and courses. I am also here to listen to your ideas to improve and support your work. Faculty review sessions and some training sessions are currently being developed, too. 
  4. Reminder about Posting Grades and Naming Webinars
    Remember to access the course and submit percentages for each of the deliverables. Then, update the final letter grade in the Jenzabar system for student reviewing. Send the grade announcement to the Registrar at stating the cohort name, course name and number. List any students who have been absent, expecting an incomplete grade, or  otherwise need  further assistance. Final letter grades are not permitted in the email due to student privacy. These grade announcements are used at this time to request release of compensation; they are important to the process. Sub mit the Course Handoff form to the Orientation cou rse  in the NGS Portal for the subsequent faculty member. Please call or email Pippi or MJ with any questions ( or

    Naming Webinars

    Faculty need to name their webinars appropriately. When you start your GoToMeeting (GTM) sessions, name them using the Course Number and Cohort Number.  When you convert them, the other information before the course number and cohort number will be automatically added by GTM.  For example: 2014-12-02.56 QS< 850-1013 MS.  Elaine reminded me that these directions are already in the Faculty Resources section of the portal.
And-my monthly DYK:   
Did You Know that?
  1.  The National Graduate School of Quality Management (NGS) Alumna, Dr. Kitty Lee, received the President's Medallion award from Dr. Clint Miner, President and CEO of NGS, for outstanding achievement in her place of work and significant contributions to NGS at an Alumni Reception and Awards Presentation on Thursday, October 22, 2015 at the Marriott Renaissance Capital View hotel in Arlington, VA.  
  2. The (NGS) Board of Trustees is proud to announce that Brigadier General Wilma L. Vaught will receive the College's highest honor - the Honorary Doctorate Degree of Letters in recognition of her lifelong accomplishments in service to our country and as an advocate for education.  This is only the fifth time in the College's 22-year history that the Board has awarded its Honorary Doctorate.  The award will be presented during the Women Veterans Interactive Conference held on Thursday, November 12, 2015, at the Gaylord Hotel and Convention Center at the National Harbor in Maryland.
  3. Allan Wilson, our Director of Development, planned a successful Veteran's/Military Recognition Luncheon here at NGS on November 9th. Well done, Allan!
Thank you again for sharing your expertise with our NGS students. Every day I am more impressed with our faculty and students. The uniqueness of our delivery, content, team approach, and assessments establishes NGS as a valuable higher education institution for our adult learners. A special thank you to our dedicated Program Chairs (Dr. Patricia Murrin-BSc, Professor Jack Kovalcik-MS, and Dr. David Braga-DBA) who are always there when I need their assistance for academic issues; they continually go above and beyond what is needed. Take care all and enjoy your teaching.

Happy Thanksgiving to all and see you next month.


Eileen C. Sullivan, Ed.D.
Interim Dean, Academic Affairs
The National Graduate School of Quality Management
186 Jones Road  |  Falmouth, MA 02540
800.838.2580 ext. 121

Follow me on Twitter  @esullivan_ngs 
Celebrating  20 YEARS of Quality Education

P.S. H ere is a picture of me at the Cape Cod Curling Club