University seeks to gather input from campus to update Strategic Plan


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To gather input on the future of the university from faculty, students and staff, the Central Michigan University Strategic Planning Team is hosting forums through Dec. 1.

“The needs of students constantly change,” said Lori Hella, associate vice president of human resources, and member of the strategic planning committee. “We have a different demographic (in CMU’s student body) now, and different student needs as far as job placement.”

Current Strategic Plan priorities:

  • Student Success 
  • Challenge our students to develop the knowledge, skills and values to be successful and contributing global citizens.
  • Research and Creative Activity - Promote excellence in research and creative activities.
  • Quality Faculty and Staff – Foster a vibrant, innovative, intellectual community of high quality faculty and staff who value inclusiveness, diversity, shared governance and respect.
  • Community Partnerships - Develop and strengthen learning experiences through collaboration with local, national and global partners to enhance cultural awareness, the natural environment, health and wellness and local economies.
  • Infrastructure Stewardship – Align university resources and infrastructures to support the university’s mission and vision.

It’s important to assess the strategic plan of the university every few years, said Joe Garrison, director of financial planning and budgets and strategic planning committee member, because it’s a “living document that should be modified.”

For on-campus faculty, staff and students, there is a forum from 1:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 29 in the Charles V. Park Library Strosacker Room; and from 3:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 1 in the Education Human Services Building French Auditorium.

The Student Government Association will have a forum from 8 to 9 p.m. Monday, Nov. 28 in the Bovee University Center auditorium.

“Student success” and “research and creative activity” are among broad objectives in the plan that the team wishes to get input.

CMU’s Strategic Plan is used to assess the effectiveness of the university. An assessment is done each year based off the plan to show if CMU is keeping up with its priorities, Garrison said.

Faculty, staff, students and the surrounding campus community will be able to provide input at the forums or online through a university email invitation.

Members of the CMU Alumni Board and all alumni chapter leaders will be invited to participate in conference call forums.

The Strategic Planning Team website includes a link for all CMU stakeholders to submit anonymous comments, which will be viewed only by members of the team.

“We’re trying to be as inclusive as we can,” Garrison said. “These forums are designed to be broadly focused to gather as much information as we can.”

At the second forum held on Nov. 21, nine faculty and staff members gave suggestions for ways they thought the plan should change to meet needs of CMU students, faculty and staff.

Putting more resources toward helping students get involved in projects outside of Mount Pleasant, such as study abroad opportunities, was one suggestion.

A final plan of a new strategic plan is expected to be reviewed by the Board of Trustees at the April 2017 meeting.

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