Advising and Mentoring
A distinctive of the GFU Engineering Program is that the engineering faculty take a personal interest in the life of each student. The faculty seeks to form close, personal relationships with the engineering students. The primary purpose of these relationships is for the faculty to mentor the students both professionally and spiritually.
With approximately 100 engineering students, the faculty are able to know the students well. Classes are small and as the faculty teach all lectures and laboratories, there is significant interaction time between faculty and students. There are numerous faculty-student social events and some of the faculty invite students to their homes. The faculty choose to have an ďopen doorĒ policy making them very accessible to students.
New freshmen receive initial academic advisement by an engineering faculty member at the summer Genesis Program. The Genesis Program is a one-day event that orients new incoming freshmen to the campus, facilities, and programs. During this time the engineering faculty assist all incoming freshman engineers to ensure they are enrolled properly for their first year.
All freshmen at GFU enroll in a 1-credit hour course called Freshman Seminar. This course addresses selected topics and issues to comfortably introduce students to the academic and social life of the University community. The instructor for each studentís seminar section serves as their temporary academic advisor for the first semester. Freshmen then select a permanent faculty advisor from the engineering faculty in their concentration prior to the start of the second semester.
The student and the advisor have several tools for ensuring that proper courses are taken. The University just recently moved to an online scheduling, advising and enrollment system called ďBruin Data.Ē Both the student and the advisor can access this system. The advising process starts with the student and advisor together creating online a plan of study showing tentative courses to be taken each semester. The student then returns to the faculty advisor each semester to discuss course progress and receive permission to enroll online. The student can enroll only after receiving this permission. Throughout the entire advising process there is an online real-time degree audit form showing the studentís progress towards degree completion. This audit is checked regularly by the faculty advisor and at the time of degree completion it is checked by the registrarís office. The system also allows access to the studentís transcript, class schedules, personal information, and a real time degree audit.
Even though the faculty advisors provide guidance and regularly meet with each student, it is the studentís responsibility to become familiar with policies and procedures outlined in the undergraduate catalog and properly complete their academic program. As an example, currently all engineering courses are offered only once a year, so advance planning is required to ensure that all courses are taken in the proper sequence. Advisors provide assistance, but students are ultimately responsible for their own programs.
Students who have completed work at other educational institutions may be entitled to advanced standing by presenting official transcripts. A minimum 2.6 cumulative college grade point average (GPA) is required for admission to the University. Students with a GPA lower than 2.6 may be considered for provisional admission. Transfer students must be free from academic or behavioral probation or suspension at all colleges previously attended to be eligible for admission to George Fox University.
George Fox University applies the accepted credits toward the general education requirements, electives, and the engineering major. The registrarís office evaluates previous outside coursework to ensure that these incoming courses meet the University requirement for general education or elective credit. For courses where transfer credit is desired but equivalency with a GFU course is uncertain, it is the studentís responsibility to file a petition online. Transfer credit petitions are sent to the course instructor, school dean, and the registrar. In certain circumstances, the Chair of Mathematics, Computer Science and Engineering has the authority to approve transfer credit. Engineering courses are transferred only at the approval of the engineering faculty. Any coursework that is approved for transfer credit will appear on the students online degree audit form. Any evaluation of transfer credit is to be considered tentative until the student has completed one semester of no less than 12 hours.
Additional criteria applied in the evaluation process are:
- Only course work with a C- or better grade will be accepted. (The GPA does not transfer. A studentís GPA is computed on work at George Fox University only).
- A maximum of 64 semester hours may be transferred from community colleges.
- A maximum of 15 semester hours of approved correspondence work may be applied toward a degree program.
- Each student must complete a minimum of 30 semester hours in residence for the bachelorís degree. Twenty hours must be in the senior year.
- Transfer students must complete at least 60 hours at George Fox University to be eligible for honors at graduation.
International students (F-1 visa students or J-1 visa students) must show proficiency in the English language by posting a score on the paper-based Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) of at least 500 or on the computer-based TOEFL of at least 173 and a score on the Test of Written English of at least 4. Students with a score between 500 and 550 (paper-based TOEFL) or between 173 and 213 (computer-based TOEFL) will be provided a one-hour tutorial during their first semester at George Fox University to improve their ability to write in English and to develop more effective study strategies. Students not showing proficiency at the above-described levels may apply for admission to the George Fox University English Language Institute.