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Regents Revise Public Service Policy Goal Is To Support State’s Economic Development

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Atlanta — October 9, 2002

Today the Board of Regents of Georgia’s public university system strengthened its power to support the state’s economic development through a significant policy revision impacting the System’s third core mission - public service.

Public service constitutes one of the University System of Georgia’s three key missions: teaching, research and service.

The change specifically adds language to an existing board policy identifying life-long education, economic development and service agreements with state and local agencies as key priorities that should be addressed by the Board of Regents.

The new policy approved by the board – a revision to section 500 of the Board of Regents Policy Manual – charges the University System of Georgia chancellor to “identify statewide needs and develop System wide initiatives” to meet public service responsibilities. The new policy will support the System’s efforts to broaden educational access, promote job growth, and use System resources to support state and local government programs and needs through a more coordinated approach.

“The world is moving to a knowledge-based economy and continuing education is becoming increasingly vital in the delivery of life-long learning,” Annie Hunt Burriss, associate vice chancellor for Economic Development, told the regents in a presentation on the policy change delivered at their monthly meeting held on the campus of Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College in Tifton. “The regents recognize Georgia’s University System must be continually responsive to the changing demands on higher education. Enhancing our public service policy with this new emphasis will help us expand educational access to more Georgians.”

Burriss said that the University System’s continuing education programs are well positioned to be flexible in shaping life-long learning programs and initiatives.

The implementation of the new System-coordinated approach to life-long learning and economic development will be administered through a new program called Georgia LEADS (Lifelong Education and Economic Development Services). Dr. David M. Morgan, who authored the Georgia LEADS report, also made a presentation to the board focusing on how the new emphasis on public service will be implemented.

According to Morgan, a key benefit of the policy change is that enhanced leadership and coordination will be afforded to the System’s wide variety of life-long education courses and offerings. Under the plan, Georgia LEADS would have fall 2003 as a target date for launching a statewide marketing effort to announce life-long education projects and performance standards for the project.

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