April 17, 2015
To all faculty and staff
There is some confusion about the handoff of the work on our strategic plan from the Strategic Planning Council to the Implementation Planning Group. I write to provide clarification on the concerns that have been brought to my attention.
First, the draft plan that is on the website is the final draft. I misused the word penultimate. Second, the individuals who are serving on the IPG were appointed by me with the benefit of recommendations from the co-chairs of the SPC and the Vice Presidents. This is an operational group and people were selected with two criteria in mind: to provide some overlap with the SPC and to bring particular operational expertise to the discussion.
The goal of the IPG is to recommend strategies we might consider in order to achieve the goals in the strategic plan. These are high level recommendations. For example, one strategy to address the objective of creating an integrated academic and co-curricular plan might be to recommend a process. They are not designing the plan.
As part of the process of creating and recommending strategies to achieve the goals in the strategic plan, the IPG plans to hold several focus groups to share the drafts of their recommendations and solicit your feedback. The Vice Presidents and other leaders on campus will also meet with groups to get a better sense of what we are already doing to support the plan and to identify what may still be needed. This information will be shared with the IPG to inform their recommendations.
At the beginning of the ‘15-‘16 academic year there will be another opportunity for the campus to review the implementation strategies. I will create a Strategic Plan Oversight Committee in the fall, which will be a representational committee whose membership will be decided in the same manner we used for the SPC. This will ensure that we feel a sense of broad ownership of the plan, that we hold ourselves accountable for executing the plan and that we honor our shared commitment to ongoing transparency and good shared governance.
As we move through the next five-year period and execute this plan, we will adhere to our governance processes. This will include being attentive to those items that appropriately reside within the responsibilities of the College Senate as well as any changes that would impact the agreed upon terms in the Collective Bargaining Agreements. It also means effective communication and interaction with the operating, professional and technical staff.
The plan that has emerged is bold and aspirational. It builds on the many successes and good work already ongoing at the college. Building on what is already successful, identifying our gaps, and focusing our efforts to bridge those gaps will ensure ongoing sustainability, competitiveness, resiliency, and, ultimately, excellence in all we do.
Thank you for all that you do every day—particularly your efforts during this very busy time of year.
April 6, 2015
To all faculty and staff
The penultimate draft of the Strategic Plan has been posted to the Strategic Plan website. It is a bold, succinct and aspirational plan. Recall the imperative I shared with you in August of 2013 and reiterated in my inaugural address last April that we focus our efforts, that we pursue excellence in all that we do, that we operate from the foundation of shared stewardship and importantly that we move toward a vision that aligns with our mission and advances our competitiveness. I believe this plan does that in two important and distinctive ways. One, it calls for us to develop an integrated academic and co-curricular plan that addresses the education of our students from a holistic perspective. And two, it calls on us to provide substantial academic and personal support to each of the students admitted to the college through, in part, a strategic enrollment management plan and enhanced academic support services, including advising. Fundamentally, the plan commits us to ensuring that any student we enroll can succeed.
The Strategic Planning Council has handed their work off to the Implementation Planning Group. The charge to and membership of this group is also available on the Strategic Plan website. In essence, they are charged with developing a set of strategies that will enable the College to achieve the objectives and therefore the goals in the plan. As has been the case right along, they are expected to be fully and completely transparent in their work. During the coming month, members of the Cabinet and their teams will be working with you to lead further discussion on the plan. As the goals and objectives now reflect an intensive, open, inclusive and participatory process, it is important that we shift our conversation away from whether or not they are the right goals and objectives. I believe they are, and they reflect my priorities as President. What is needed now is to discuss them from the perspective of our individual and collective work. In other words, what are we already doing in our daily work that supports the plan and what would need to change to better support the plan. Importantly, I want to assure you that any strategies that emerge that might affect the current Collective Bargaining Agreement, will be handled as called for by that agreement. Governance is a critical objective in this plan and the CBA is part of our governance structure. It is also important for me to reiterate that our budget model and resources will be aligned with this plan, and to note that, in the future, all our planning processes will be integrated with implementation of the strategic plan.
I look forward to your feedback and encourage you to stay engaged with this next phase of the planning process. I expect that the final plan with strategies will be completed in late May for presentation to the Board of Trustees in late June.