Create relevant and engaging visual narratives that clearly communicate the scope and value of current research in the College of Innovation and Design at Boise State University.
Boise State is an innovation engine within higher education. With a deep commitment to learning by doing, we are a university on the move. Historically a community college and traditionally a commuter campus, Boise State has primarily served non-traditional undergraduate and homegrown graduate students while recruiting the non-research active faculty member. As we evolve on our path to becoming a metropolitan research university of distinction, our past experience has developed a unique culture prioritizing student growth--an evolution full of key milestones. A doctoral research institution by the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education, we have since our last review doubled our research expenditures, tripled our doctoral graduates, and increased our doctoral students by 129%. As a result, Boise State is one of the fastest growing graduate programs in the United States. We are today and tomorrow committed to continuing rapid growth while establishing VIP as institutional ‘glue’ connecting a world class research, education and development culture and institution. Boise State is committed to carving new pathways of education, research, and service -- reimagining the future of higher education.
Vertically Integrated Projects at Boise State is uniquely poised to support institutional evolution and student development. With remembrance of our humble beginnings as a teaching university, we are continually finding new ways to balance excellence in teaching and the university’s growing research emphasis. VIP as a methodology is emerging as a foundational approach to finding that balance while building an interdisciplinary culture. We are focused on seeding innovation within our current university (institutionalizing multi-disciplinary collaborative work amongst faculty and students), innovating our future university (reimagining teaching, research teams, and core curriculum), and innovating for our communities by engaging our students in new learning experiences to tackle large, authentic social and global challenges. Our willingness to experiment and take risks enables our VIP projects to make progress in everything from the biomedical application of plasma wound treatment, the science of art preservation, and shelter buildings for those in need of disaster-relief. Our commitment to cross-disciplinary collaboration and unique position with access to all colleges and their students allows us to extend VIP’s structure throughout our campus. Our projects will allow us to engage with all colleges and with critical topics in public policy, ecology, and visual storytelling to name a few. One project has even branched further, incorporating our library staff as VIP leaders. This unprecedented level of access reflects our nature as a welcoming harbor for all research projects, regardless of their original academic home. VIP at Boise State is a melting pot of innovation. With many more projects to come, we will continue bridging disciplines to deliver strong, valuable, and viable products and solutions to pressing community challenges with global implications.
Boise State’s College of Innovation + Design, founded in 2015, identifies, pilots, incubates and integrates within the university new research, development, and education approaches to higher education. Vertically Integrated Projects serve as a cornerstone program of the college, providing a world class educational research methodology that maps to the fulfillment of the College of Innovation + Design’s mission. Our contributions to the VIP Consortium focus on three key growth/sustainability dimensions: cultural, business and institutionalization. Culturally, VIP promotes a model of inclusive excellence that democratizes innovation and design providing students an unparalleled educational experience. Our projects emphasize open access and high performance. We prioritize recruiting/enrolling students from diverse backgrounds while maintaining high academic standards. To ensure our diverse student population’s ability to meet the high expectations, we are continually strengthening and already strong support system that intentionally addresses the needs of traditionally underserved populations. We lower barriers to entry, partner our students with the Living and Learning Center, VIP coaches provide ongoing academic support within each VIP team and ensure our students are connected with the Institute for STEM and Diversity Initiatives. Our VIP culture is built on behaviors of caring, honesty, respect and responsibility. These values are threads in the fabric of every VIP, engaging students in addressing real world problems and providing them the academic and individual skills to take lessons learned into their lives and workplace. Our team’s commitment to inclusion results allows us to be approachable, welcoming, and nimble. Our VIP business model is structurally, physically and financially unique. Included in the university's long-term strategic plan, VIP is viewed as a significant structural component of Boise State’s future. Also structurally unique is the fact that our VIP is embedded within in the College of Innovation + Design. Emphasizing reach and connectedness across programs VIP is seen as a fundamental module of the College of Innovation + Design’s ongoing success. Being physically located in the Albertsons Library at the heart of campus symbolizes our role as a gathering place open for all people and ideas. VIP is emerging as a preferred institutional partner in addressing some of the most ingrained aspects of conventional higher education. Specifically, our VIP has grown organically based on authentic faculty research passion, while simultaneously engaging financial sustainability issues of leadership understanding/support, budgeting, revenue sharing and departmental protectionism. Leadership commitment and institutional teamwork has resulted in a financial model that provides sustainable investment independent of federal and other funding. The funding model further allows our students to participate for credit in VIP regardless of their academic major. As a result, our students receive unmatched support and stability while this level of institutionalization de-risks historic faculty challenges of interdisciplinary research development and education. As Boise State’s College of Innovation + Design, VIP, and the University overall continue their intentional growth, new learning pathways are discovered, tested, and implemented. The results will be shared with the consortium to continue our forward progress together.