Programs and Initiatives - Office of the Provost - Christopher Newport University

Office of the Provost

Programs and Initiatives

The Office of the Provost sponsors several initiatives that promote and celebrate student achievement and recognize outstanding faculty who have made significant contributions in the areas of teaching, scholarship and service.

The University Writing Committee (UWC) promotes and celebrates student writing through the following activities:

  • Promotes a university culture that fosters excellence in undergraduate writing
  • Oversees the writing program awards for students and faculty
  • Reviews policies and procedures regarding undergraduate writing and makes recommendations to the administration and appropriate faculty committees
  • Assesses university-wide writing courses

For more information, email

Provost's Award for Excellence in Teaching Student Writing

This award is an annual contest sponsored by the Office of the Provost and the UWC. The contest is open to all faculty, with the winner receives a cash prize.

This award is given to a faculty member who is an energetic champion of writing. The winner's devotion to undergraduate writing embodies the goals and ideals of the liberal arts tradition through writing assignment design, treatment of writing as a developmental process, the use of written feedback and evaluation of writing.

The Christopher Newport Alumni Society created the Alumni Society Award for Excellence in Teaching and Mentoring in 2007 to honor faculty who are exceptionally committed to teaching and learning excellence and to university citizenship. The award includes a stipend of $2,500, and is presented each year at Latin Honors Convocation the evening before commencement.

The faculty development program aims to improve instructional effectiveness and promote the professional development and expertise of faculty members. Activities include:

  • Research
  • Preparation of a research product
  • Writing
  • Delivering academic papers
  • Additional training
  • Retraining to serve the University in a new area
  • Supplemental funds for academic activities
  • Support of course reductions to allow time for research

Dissertation grants may also be awarded to help offset the expenses incurred in preparing doctoral dissertations.

Three faculty awards are given annually for teaching, scholarship and service. All faculty are eligible for the awards, which include a $2,000 stipend.

The Outstanding Faculty Awards are the highest honor for faculty at Virginia's public and private colleges and universities. These awards recognize superior accomplishments in teaching, research and public service.

Nine Christopher Newport faculty have won this prestigious award:

  • Dr. Tarek Abdel-Fattah, 2024, Chemistry
  • Dr. John Finn, 2024, Geography
  • Dr. Kelly Cartwright, 2023, Psychology
  • Dr. Margarita Marinova, 2023, English
  • Dr. Jonathan W. White, 2019, American Studies
  • Dr. Quentin Kidd, 2014, Political Science
  • Dr. Tracey Schwarze, 2007, Emerita, English
  • Dr. Harold Cones, 2000, Emerita, Biology
  • Dr. Susan St. Onge, 1997, Emerita, French

The Office of the Provost provides a $1,000 incentive to faculty who receive an externally sponsored grant of substantial monetary value as defined for each college.

For the first time since 2012, Christopher Newport is participating in a national faculty satisfaction survey administered by the Collaborative on Academic Careers in Higher Education (COACHE), which is affiliated with the Harvard Graduate School of Education. The faculty job satisfaction survey assesses multiple aspects of the faculty experience including teaching, research, service, tenure and promotion, and departmental engagement and collegiality, as well as other aspects of faculty life. COACHE will enable us to understand the lives of faculty at CNU and to use feedback to make data-driven changes to policies and practice to enhance faculty success.

Visit the COACHE website.

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