IONA

Summary of Action Steps Taken by the Committee

Since its first meeting on August 30, 2011, the Integrity in Reporting Committee has been actively engaged in reviewing critical communications and data reporting processes on a college-wide basis.   Resulting action items have included, but are not limited to, the following:

Communication Items

  • The IRC met on July 25, 2013 to review the status of the Forbes story. The IRC endorsed the strategy of monitoring the blogs without making contribution unless the comments took a negative turn and approved the content of central messaging.
  • A comprehensive communications plan for internal and external constituencies was developed, discussed, and delegated for action. Outreach to faculty, students, and managers was deemed vital.
  • Information sharing meetings were held by the President with: senior faculty leaders, Middle Managers, SGA, Chairs, Alumni Board of Directors, and the Christian Brothers.
  • A press statement was drafted and released.
  • There were 36 areas of news coverage “hits” of the Provost removed story from 9/1/11.
  • The Interim Provost conducted a media interview with NEWS 12 Westchester.
  • All US News and World Report referenced rankings were pulled from the website.
  • Princeton Review methodology was reviewed and a decision was made to pull references found on our website and related print material.
  • Iona Alumni Magazine article referenced ranking in Q &A and several pages were corrected. Former Provost’s name was deleted from Contributors Column along with picture and article.
  • The Student Government Association Meeting and the Middle Management Meeting held on 9/1/11 went well. Straight forward and relevant questions were raised. One question raised was about releasing names of IRC members.
  • Calls were made to parent co-chairs for Iona College Association for Parents (ICAP). Both felt confident that Iona is handling the situation in the right way and appreciated the transparency going forward.
  • Freshmen & Returning Student Parent Letters were reviewed and committee agreed letters were fine to be mailed as is. This mailing will go out after President’s letter.
  • Annual Campus Profile UPDATE Survey and Graduate Campus Profile Survey for CICU was reviewed, modified and approved for submission.
  • Draft of President Nyre's Letter to Community was reviewed and posted.
  • Additional internet news blogs picked up the story. No new information was reported.
  • It was agreed that an Integrity in Reporting Committee website should be created, made live quickly, and contain as much pertinent information as practicable.
  • All external reporting agencies to which questionable data was sent were notified. All were grateful for the outreach.
  • The Integrity in Reporting Committee website went live as of 9/6/11 and the campus was notified by email. The website is up and is linked from President’s page; will be linked from Provost’s page and can be found under the alphabetical listing. Information included a letter from the President, a statement from the College, a statement naming an Interim Provost, and a link to the whistle blower policy. 
  • Admissions promotional materials have been pulled due to Princeton Review’s data reference in lead piece. New material will be printed immediately without referencing data in question.
  • FAQs were developed and approved for submission and posting on the Committee website on 9/19/11.  
  • FAQs will be used as talking points by student admissions tour guides for walking tours of campus in the event questions arise.
  • All website text which referenced US News and World Report data as well as PDF files on website were taken down.
  • Quick Facts were removed and cleaned of any suspect data.
  • Economic Impact Statement (’07) was pulled from website. Hard copies of the ’09-10 updates were circulated at Brother’s June 2010 Open Residence Hall Meeting.
  • The Interim Provost provided an interview with ICTV.
  • Continuing scanning of external  WebPages for coverage of the story.
  • Iona made Forbes America’s Top Colleges (# 440). Reviewing methodology.
  • Hagan School of Business will also review Business Week’s SAT scores and will determine what to do after review.
  • The Iona College Association of Parent’s (ICAP) page will have a link to the IRC website.
  • The Committee is monitoring the number of hits to the Committee website to determine the best use and arrangement of information.
  • The Committee reviewed the Iona website where require HEA information is posted. It is recognized there may be inaccurate information there. It was decided to correct that information once the third party audit report verified the correct information.
  • Guidelines for Data Reporting were approved for dissemination to faculty and staff supervisors.
  • There was a discussion of creating two working groups for the Integrity in Reporting Committee; one on communications, the other on reporting. Faculty Senate was asked to provide 9 faculty nominees for three open spots.
  • The Committee discuss possible strategies to address Iona’s alumni who want to know how do data inaccuracies affect them.
  • Advancement disclosed that 2010 Annual Reports contained inaccurate information; remaining copies were discarded as to prevent further circulation.
  • Media consultant is working with Admissions regarding talking points for potential students, parents, and high school guidance counselors.
  • Updated letters to Alumni, Parents, and Donors for website are ready, if needed. Minor edits were discussed and made.
  • The Journal News ran a short, on-line story on data reporting.
  • Outreach to external regulatory bodies and news media outlets is in process.
  • The Interim Provost provided access to ICTV for an interview.
  • The Ionian ran an article that appeared.
  • Inside Higher Ed and The Chronicle of Higher Educationran articles on Iona’s data inaccuracies.
  • At scheduled internal community meetings a range of responses were observed, but there was an appreciation for the outreach and support for the college’s transparent corrective actions.
  • News 12 came to Iona on Veteran’s Day (offices closed) and interviewed 2 students regarding data release.
  • President’s Office is working with all outside agencies, updating them on data on a regular basis.
  • The Chair introduced the College's new Senior Director of College Communications, Ms. Valerie Peters who started on December 1, 2011.
  • The College has had additional contact and information exchange with the U.S. Department of Education and the Middle States Commission on Higher Education. Communications with these bodies will be open. Both bodies recognize the College is taking corrective steps.
  • US News and World Report posted a blog entry on Thursday, December 1st about Iona. The posting compared the revised data with the inaccurate data and the effect on Iona’s ranking for the 2012 Regional Universities-North category as a result (a drop of 20 spots). The posting did stress the importance of accurate reporting by all colleges and universities.
  • An Iona Arts Council catalog still has the name of former Provost with his previous title. For accuracy, the online PDF file will be corrected.
  • The Alumni Board passed a unanimous resolution endorsing the College’s action in response to data reporting.
  • The Committee noted other US schools with data reporting problems.
  • The Committee had a discussion with President Nyre about how to more effectively communicate with Iona employees about the essence of the Whistle Blower Policy in regards to it being anonymous and confidential if needed.Committee suggested an informative email blast followed by a community communications plan.
  • Committee discussed US Naval Academy case.
  • The Integrity in Reporting Committee was asked by President Nyre to discuss a Code of Conduct for the College. Once completed, this will go through college governance for approval. As a result of this, Director of Residential Life briefed Committee about the Students Code of Conduct policies and procedures for both residential and commuter students, as well as the judicial data base system used. The Director of Human Resources also spoke to Committee about Employees Rules of Conduct, as it appears in the current Employee Handbook (page 29); and, the Senior Associate Athletic Director spoke about Student Athletes Code of Conduct in regards to Iona College as well as part of the NCAA commitment to compliance.  The Committee will clarify its charge and begin to make recommendations shortly.
  • Whistle Blower Policy and Procedure, January 2010, was discussed and reviewed by Committee. No substantive change is needed to be made to this policy as long as language is amended in first bullet of policy to reflect wording, "financial and data reporting." Discussion of appropriate governance committee referral was had.
  • Admissions webpages will be scrubbed and reviewed for data regarding number of students at Iona.
  • Various Codes of Conduct and need to include integrity, especially in data reporting, was discussed. The Committee identified various codes, possible modifications, and the process for making recommended changes through the governance structure. Notification process and communication plan describing changes was discussed and approved.
  • The Committee reviewed the Whistleblower Policy and need to included integrity as well as a plan for re-communicating the importance and key elements of the policy. College Communications was tasked with developing a communication plan.
  • College Board Survey was reviewed online by Committee and approved and was modified with the suggested changes.
  • The Committee reviewed the Interfaith Community Service Report by Office of Mission and Ministry.Verification methodology was approved by Committee.
  • Accrediting body for Social Work (CSWE) requested information about ethnicity, salary and tenure status questions concerned Committee. Information verifications are being done and methodology was approved by Committee with a condition that salary information and ethnicity data be reported directly from HR to CSWE, to protect privacy of students and faculty.
  • It was discovered that Bloomberg Business Week's graduate and undergrad survey for 2010 had inaccurate data. Notification and a copy of our audited report will be sent to the editors directly.
  • Athletics notified IRC of their spring nomination submission for student awards to the NCAA using previously (fall) reviewed and approved methodology.
  • Admissions updated Committee in regards to application counting issue at US Naval Academy. We requested a written opinion by the relevant professional association and verified our practices are well within acceptable practices.
  • Whistleblower communication rollout plan was discussed and agreed upon.
  • Code of Conduct revision for Faculty Handbook were reviewed and submitted for the Faculty Senate consideration.
  • The IRC recommends that the College be careful in promoting any rankings due to the variety and scope of employed methods. The Committee will continue to assess.
  • The IRC learned of the 100 day plan for the Office of Institutional Effectiveness (OIE)
  • IRC discussed the function of this committee and how its charge will evolve into integrity of data, once the OIE is in place.
  • Updated communications on Whistleblower policy was discussed and approved for annual re-deployment.

 Data Reporting Items

  • Phone and written correspondence was made with: Integrated Post Secondary Education Data System (IPEDS - Federal Government), USDE Office of Federal Student Aid, Middle States Accreditation, Attorney General, DASNY, NY State Dept of Education, Moody’s, Standard and Poor’s, Digital Assurance Co, Excel Assurance Co, media rating agencies (US News, Princeton Review, Barron’s).
  • The Committee reviewed data for submission to CICU for inclusion in its yearly directory. The Committee unanimously approved the submission with 2 minor suggested changes.
  • The Committee reviewed and approved a methodology for sourcing general institutional information supplied to IPEDS.
  • The Committee reviewed the bond offering curricular that are supplied to rating agencies. There are many data sets that will have to be reported that need to be verified for accuracy.
  • The Committee recognized the need for creation of a sourcing and citation methodology for all external data reporting. A methodology will be forthcoming and approved.
  • The Committee reviewed and approved the methodology and data sets to be used by Admissions and sent to our external vendors who implement our communication plan with prospective students.
  • A review of program specific accreditation reports was conducted by the Deans and revealed no connection with suspected inaccurate data.
  • The Committee reviewed and approved data collection methodologies from Athletics to be submitted to the NCAA. Specific attention was given to the need for verification of any calculations performed.
  • The Committee reviewed Section 1.7 (Accuracy of Public Information) in the recent application to ASHA for certification of our graduate Speech Language Pathology Program. It was agreed that a letter of disclosure will be sent to ASHA.
  • The Committee reviewed recent STEP and CSTEP applications. It was determined that certain inaccurate information may have been reported to NYSED. It was agreed to verify the data with information to be supplied in the audit report and then notify NYSED of any specific inaccuracies.
  • The Committee reviewed the College’s CLEARY data collection and reporting methodology . The Committee required the data to be sourced and cross checked before release.
  • A listing of all data reports to external agencies were begun to determine if inaccurate data exists. If, so the Committee will follow up on a case by case basis.
  • Institutional Reporting Methodology was approved as policy.
  • Middle States data methodology acquisition was reviewed and approved. The committee will review final report before submission to Middle States.
  • Athletics fall data reporting cycle was discussed, reviewed and approved.
  • Finance reported as a point of information that directory information and FISAPA information was being submitted externally.
  • The Committee reviewed the Registrar data submission for student contact information required under the federal Solomon Amendment.  
  • New federal regulations regarding gainful employment reporting was discussed.
  • External tracking list regarding data reporting issues at other schools was reviewed and updated.
  • Methodology of Athletics EADA Report was reviewed and discussed. Methodology is sound and multiple checks on data have been done. Committee approved.
  • Liberty Partnership Program, overall methodology was reviewed and approved subject to verification and sourcing of data.
  • The Committee noted the USA Today report on default rates on loans soar and gainful employment issues are major concerns.
  • NACUBO Report (report regarding data of first time Freshmen receiving financial aid) was reviewed for 2011 submission. All data has been prepared, checked and cross checked by SFS and reported on 10/28/11.
  • New York State Department of Health's 2011-2012 post-secondary Immunization survey was reviewed: Wellness Center collects all immunization documentation from students and records on People Soft. The Committee approved the methodology and data submission.
  • Middle States task force/working group data request regarding full time faculty identifiers came to Committee and was approved with modification.
  • The Education Department presented methodology for the New York State Teacher Certification Examination (NYSTCE) Database for review regarding how they report program completer performance on NYS Certification exams to NCATE/Specialty Associations/Federal government (Title II)/American Association of Teachers of Education PEDS reports (AACTE).Committee approved this report.
  • The Spring 2012 administration of the Commuter and Off-campus Student Experience Survey created by the National Clearinghouse for Commuter Programs (NCCP) at Northeastern State University and HigherEdResearch.com was discussed and approved.
  • The Education Department presented Employer Survey to Committee which reports employer rating of program completers to NCATE/Specialty Associations/Federal government. This survey was discussed, reviewed and approved by Committee.
  • Discussions with various external bodies is on-going.
  • NCAA Graduation Reports broken down by gender and ethnicity were received. Our data is automatically converted into rates by their portals.
  • Advancement’s Grant Reports from 2006 to present were reviewed and discussed.
  • Data reports are being requested from the Department of the Air Force for seniors.
  • Who's Who Among Students in American Universities and Colleges is a commercial listing of student’s with a GPA 3.0 or higher. After some discussion about whether Iona should submit data to this organization for students who like to make their own purchase of this book, the Committee approved this action with the suggestion of inserting a disclaimer about student privacy, etc.
  • Jaime Fogarty, Chief Compliance Officer from Athletics will join the Integrity in Reporting Committee.
  • The U.S. Department of Education and the Middle States Commission on Higher Education are completing a review of information received from the College.
  • US News and World Report did post a blog entry on Thursday, December 1st about Iona's data.
  • Follow up meetings with Standard & Poor's and Moody's are scheduled.
  • CUPA surveys are due December 31 from Human Resources. This is a confidential salary survey with benchmark information. It was determined by Committee that methodology in place is complaint with committee guidelines. Committee approved release.
  • An initial review of metrics from the College’s Senior Survey reveal some inconsistencies. The Committee agreed that the Chair should further look into the data.
  • National CUPA surveys from Human Resources were presented and reviewed. This is a confidential salary survey with benchmark information (also used by the Chronicle of Higher Education for its yearly report). It was determined by the Committee that a conforming methodology is in place that preserves confidentiality and produces verified information. The Committee approved the data submission.
  • Hagan’s salary survey was explained to Committee by Hagan Dean in how data is extracted and verified.  Committee approved methodology with 2 conditions that the Provost will review regarding certain sub-set questions.
  • Office of Mission and Ministry Honor Roll Survey was presented.After some discussion, Committee decided it needed clarification about definition of “community service” in regards to community fabric and if it includes students exclusively.The Committee did not approve survey but will confer in more depth going forward.
  • Data from a 2008 Periodic Report to Middle States  has inaccurate data. KPImetrics data table from ‘04, ‘05, ‘06, ’07was likely misreported in certain cells. Additional verification underway in conjunction with the senior survey.
  • A representative from the Registrar discussed the methodology for obtaining and verifying data for Title II reports and how Iona reports our education major students to New York State. Committee approved.
  • The inaccuracies in the posted Graduating Senior Survey Results in relation to student employment placement, graduate school admission and internships were explained to the IRC Committee by the Provost. As a result of these inaccuracies, the IRC was asked by the Provost if there were any objections to having an outside source verify or disprove these findings. The Committee approved.
  • A representative from the Registrar discussed the methodology for obtaining and verifying data for Title II and how Iona reports our Education students to New York State. Committee approved.
  • The Committee reviewed an Association of Schools of Journalism and Mass Communication Survey which asked for confidential data in such a way that could identify a faculty member. Committee did not approve due to questions about confidentiality of survey and value of participation.
  • The NYS Department of Labor is asking for current and accurate labor market information from Iona for its annual report, Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) program. This information is general, no names, social security numbers or personal employee is given out. Committee approved.
  • NCAA Revenue and Expense Report's data was reviewed and found to be similar to the previous EADA Report. Audited financial data was used. Committee approved for release.
  • College Board requested, among other metrics, the total number of part-time faculty with terminal degrees for corrections to previous reports. The College does not save this data in a systematic way, however, and what we previously reported cannot be verified. The Committee approved the creation of a new methodology to store this data going forward.
  • Data and methodology for Barron's 2012 Survey Profiles of American Colleges was reviewed and approved with certain changes to reinforce clarity.
  • Confidential American Association of University Professors salary survey will be reviewed by the Chair to ensure consistency with IRC approved verification methodologies.
  • The department of Education’s first level of NCATE Report was summarized for the Committee by the department Chair. Committee approved.
  • Staff and Administrative Council will update language of Code of Conduct at their next meeting.
  • CICU draft document of Master Plan Report required by the New York Board of Regents was reviewed by the Committee. There were some questions, but methodology was determined to be sound, internally verified, and properly sourced. Committee approved.
  • Education’s annual NCATE Report which is basis for site visit (2015) was reviewed and discussed. Diversity issue is a focus. All files are kept electronically. Committee approved.
  • Flow Chart Methodology was completed.
  • Peterson's Annual Survey of Undergraduate Financial Aid 2011-2012 (which appears in Peterson’s Guide Publication) was reviewed and discussed. Data comes from Student Financial Services and is verified and sourced. Committee approved.
  • Whistleblower re-launch timeline was discussed and approved.
  • DASNY report and update was reviewed. It was noted that conferrals should include August date as this is consistent with IPEDS, but previous reports and audit only included up to June in a given year.
  • Business Data Set Survey for MBA Program to be used for Princeton review publication was reviewed  Methodology was verified.  Committee approved with additional verification of section D.
  • Great Places to Work Survey from Modern Inc. are general questions about the workplace emailed to faculty, administrators and staff. This is Iona’s second year to participate. Committee approved.
  • IPEDS 2012 Title II Report for Federal Government was discussed. Committee found methodology sound with proper verification from Education and IT. Committee approved.
  • DASNY data request was reviewed and approved for submission.
  • Business Data Set Survey for MBA Program to be used for Princeton Review Publication was reviewed and verified.  Committee approved with additional verification of section D.
  • Great Places to Work Survey from Modern Inc. was reviewed and approved.
  • IPEDS 2012 Report was discussed. Committee found methodology and verification sound.
  • Admissions updated Committee on third party validation of our Admissions Department's by the NYSACAC Admission Practices Committee.
  • Psychology Department Survey was posted, discussed and approved.
  • ACT Report was reviewed and approved.
  • Great Colleges’ Institutional Questionnaire 2012 was discussed and reviewed by Committee. Due date is April 13th.
  • CUPA’s HR Executive Total Compensation Survey (confidential;, listing salaries) Aggregated data is reported so there are no identifiers. Committee approved methodology.
  • Education Department’s Title II for 2010 -2011 was reviewed. Committee approved.
  • Middle States directory information and updated data was reviewed.      
  • Athletics NCAA audit report was reviewed. Methodology was approved by Committee. Report was approved for release.
  • ACT GRADUATE Survey data extraction and methodology was verified. Committee reviewed and approved.
  • NYSED Disability Data report was collected by Rudin Center and reviewed and verified for fall 2011. Committee approved.
  • Committee discussed conversion of ACT to SAT scores whereby it was determined that an older data table was being used resulting in a slight 1 point t differential in some years. Correct table was inserted and will be used going forward.
  • US News & World Report survey was reviewed and approved with certain corrections.
  • Library survey (ACRL) was reviewed and approved without modification.
  • The committee reviewed the US News & World Report data submissions for the coming academic year 2012 - 2013. Some corrected data from the previous year was also able to be included in the submission.
  • A draft of Iona's NCAA Graduation Success Report was presented by Jamie Fogarty of Athletics. Student graduation rate accounts for all student athletes at Iona, broken down by ethnicity, sex, enrollment information. The committee reviewed the data methodology, extraction, and verification process and approve the submission of this report.
  • National Post-Secondary Student Aid Study was posted, reviewed, and approved by the Committee.
  • AACSB Survey 2012 was explained to Committee by Dean Calluzzo. Methodology and verification were approved by the committee.
  • The committee discussed more data inaccuracy issues that surfaced. The first is an extraction issue reported in '09 - '10 in Peterson's Survey whereby the college reported only three years' worth of data instead of four. This was due to an error in the query. The second issue is student debt vs. tuition as printed in the May 12, 20012 article, Degrees of Debt in The New York Times which used the inaccurate data. Additionally, in a previous Peterson's survey student aid, external and merit based scholarships were reported but not need based scholarships. These inaccuracies have been corrected for the coming year and the college has been in contact with the respective organizations to correct the previous year's data. The Committee endorsed the corrections.
  • Dr. Nyre's letter concerning Iona's new US News & World Report ranking is posted on the IRC website.
  • Campus Safety and Security presented their methodology and data for CLERY reporting. IRC reviewed and approved release of the report.
  • Senior and graduate student surveys were reviewed, updated, and approved for posting in accordance with the College's regulatory reporting requirements.
  • IRC received a presentation detailing the regulatory definitions of applications. It was recommended we adjust on a go forward basis the methodology used to count completed applications. The IRC endorsed the recommendation and asked the new method be used this academic year forward.
  • NCATE (Education) SPA reports are being reviewed by IRC on a rolling basis.
  • Adjustment has been made to SAT score calculations in IPEDS Institutional Characteristics Survey at the recommendation of The Office of Institutional Effectiveness and Planning (OIEP) to include all (including second taking) received SAT scores.
  • Committee discussed prospective student applications that are not completed/are pending and the suggested change from OIEP that we will now count completed applications only and create another category for incomplete should be created in Admissions to capture this audience.
  • The Office of Institutional Effectiveness and Planning reported the college practice has been to report high school Junior year GPS (un-weighted) and not calculate senior year GPAs, or weighted transcripts. Admissions does get the weighted transcripts but our data had not reflected this in the past. OIEP suggests recording both. IRC approved.
  • The Integrity in Reporting Committee was established on August 30, 2011 in the absence of having an Office of Institutional Effectiveness. The goal of the IRC is to support transparent communication and review of information to ensure reliability of critical data reported by Iona College. Now that Iona has an Office of Institutional Effectiveness, it is the agreement of this committee is to migrate into two smaller committees, an Advisory Body for OIEP and a Crisis Communication Committee to meet the needs of the college as it arises. The IRC endorsed the change subject to further input and approval of the President.