Growing UE

UE Goals

Undergraduate Education is a complex organization that has undergone a great deal of change:  changes in mandate from UC Davis’s leadership and the UC Office of the President, changes in leadership and staff, changes in mission, even changes in location.  And we’re an organization of people – human beings with passion for our work and an extraordinary variety of talents.  We’re an organic system that must be cultivated, not constructed.  And we’re one organization among many on campus that must grow in collaboration with others to accomplish our goals.  And so we have identified Growing UE as the theme for our retreat, and for the ongoing activities throughout the year.

Vision, Mission and Organization

Carolyn Thomas opened the off-site retreat with a discussion of our vision, mission, and organization going forward.   Our vision, articulated in the video below, lays out our core value of delivering the best possible education to the increasingly diverse UC Davis undergraduate student population.  That vision informs our mission, goals, and approach to accomplishing those goals.

UE is tasked with addressing very difficult challenges in the delivery of timely, meaningful, student-centered education.   The reorganization and reclassification process has realigned leadership to align and advance UE’s and the units’ goals.   Carolyn shared the current organizational chart showing the alignment of each unit with an AVP/ADUE.   Associate Dean Dave Furlow,  Associate Vice Provost Matt Traxler (Academic Planning), Assistant Vice Provost Marco Molinaro (Educational Effectiveness), and Assistant Vice Provost Helen Frasier (Undergraduate Education) described their roles and the goals for their units. 


The Wedge – Gerry Preciado

The Wedge – Gerry Preciado

During our climate review, staff identified improving communication as a top priority.  We emphasized building communication with two presentations:

How Conversations Go Sideways, and What to do When They Do

Carolyn Penny
Director, Campus Dialogue & Deliberation
Office of the Provost

The Wedge – A Simple Metaphor to Achieve Sustained Harmony and Effectiveness at Work

Gerry Preciado
Director, Employment Practice Consulting / General Counsel

Team Building

This session explored communication, thinking and working styles using the Whole Brain model.  After using a card sort to identify primary brain “color,” we grouped with others in our color to plan and present skits and tweets.

Whole Brain: Thinking and Working Styles

Kelly Crabtree
Training Program Manager
Staff Development and Professional Services

  • Whole Brain (PDF)
  • Whole Brain Action Steps (PDF)
  • The Hermann International website ( has information about the Whole Brain model and the “HBDI Profile” (on-line assessment).
  • A copy of The Whole Brain Business Book is on order for further study.

Growing UE

Stan Nosek, Vice Chancellor for Administration (Retired)
“It is our responsibilities we should take seriously, not ourselves.”
—Stan Nosek & Bob Kerr

Stan and Bob, longtime leaders who have worn dozens of hats over nearly a combined century at UC Davis, joined our retreat for the entire day.  They closed the retreat with their presentation, Growing UE:  It Begins and Ends with a Mission, using their annual hikes up Half Dome as a metaphor for the mission, from planning to “Setting out in the Dark” to “Mission Accomplished.”  Along the way, they encouraged us to stay on course, move out of our comfort zone, prepare for bumps in the road, and celebrate and recognize achievements.

It Begins and Ends with a Mission

Stan Nosek
Vice Chancellor for Administration (Retired)
Bob Kerr
Assistant Vice Provost of Development at University Outreach and International Programs (Retired)

Next Steps

Let’s keep the momentum! 

  • Take the Survey – Keep UE growing with your feedback and expertise.
  • Join the Growing UE Committee to help plan events throughout the year.
  • Email Angelina with your ideas, or to volunteer.

Retreat Planning Committee:

  • Lolita Adkins
  • Margie Barr
  • Angelina Herron
  • Sharon Knox
  • Kara Moloney
  • Nicole Seemungal
  • Rachel Whitcombe
Thank you to Field & Pond for hosting the 2015 UC Davis Undergraduate Education retreat.