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Column by the Chancellor in UH Hilo’s Newsletter: Ka Lono Hanakahi, Sept. 2012

Message from University of Hawai‘i at Hilo Chancellor Donald O. Straney
Ka Lono Hanakahi, UH Hilo’s Faculty and Staff Newsletter
September 2012

College of Business and Economics earns high marks in national assessment

Welcome to our new academic year at UH Hilo. The beginning of the school year offers an exciting beginning for all of us.

I am delighted to share with you some great news from UH Hilo’s College of Business and Economics. CoBE and the students in the college recently received high scores from the nationwide Collegiate Learning Assessment. The CLA is a national instrument that evaluates students’ written responses to assess critical thinking, reasoning, problem solving skills, and their ability to communicate clearly and cogently.

Our student achievements were significantly above the national mean. Thirty-three graduating seniors enrolled in the capstone strategic planning course attained an average overall CLA score of 1,189, which puts our seniors in the 57thpercentile of graduating seniors nationwide. Better still, the CoBE’s Value-Added Score among the hundreds of institutions that administer the CLA is at the 93rd percentile nationwide!

Faculty at the college attribute this positive outcome to several factors: high quality faculty with terminal degrees who teach and are also active researchers devoted to student learning; small class sizes that allow personal attention and high levels of interaction; a strong culture of professionalism at the college; and applied learning activities such as internships, consulting for local businesses, and case and business plan competitions.

Our graduates who participated in the CLA are pleased, but not surprised, by the results. Winona Chen (2012) remarks that our “professors have passion for what they teach, they are invested in our success as students and professionals, and they invite us to reach our full potential.” Chen is currently interning in an Executive Team Leader position teaching fitness classes and running triathlons.

Shaun McKim (2012), a double major in economics and political science, currently enrolled in Clark University’s MBA program on a merit scholarship and says the “rigorous curriculum” and the opportunity to collaborate with professors and present papers at international conferences prepared him for the challenges of graduate school.

Emily Anderson (2012), an accounting graduate, says the courses are designed to emulate what students will encounter in the real work force. “I will be the first to attest to how much employers notice those things,” she says. “I am so lucky to have the fortunate problem this summer of having to turn down job offers because I was receiving too many.”

We are proud of our students and their performance on the CLA. This is confirmation of their critical thinking, analytical, and communication abilities. These results confirm that we offer a high-quality education and are preparing our graduates well for employment and advanced studies.

Aloha,
Don Straney

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