February 14, 2022
On behalf of the Strategic Planning core team, I wanted to take the opportunity to provide a brief message and share updates that the core team has prepared.
First, it is important to recognize the hard work and leadership that Dr. Jennifer Bott provided in developing the framework and process that we are moving forward with for Strategic Planning. As we move through this transitional period, I want to emphasize there are no plans to slow down the progress toward the creation of a Strategic Plan that will guide our University for years to come. We will continue to move forward, listen to our campus community and seek input on the direction of the University. I ask that you consider participating in the many opportunities that will be available over the coming months to provide your input.
Thank you for lending your perspectives during the six town halls about mission and vision, with two additional sessions scheduled this month. These town halls produced nearly 300 structured responses that serve as the foundation for the steering committee’s reevaluation of our mission and vision statements. I ask that you continue to participate in the various opportunities that the steering committee and working groups host this semester. We need your input to make this plan a success.
Our Strategic Planning website continues to offer engagement opportunities—mission and vision worksheet, suggestion box, listening and values session registration—and will also be the home of all data collected throughout the process. Please visit the site regularly to keep up to date on the progress being made.
Our steering committee meets biweekly to engage in discussion around the critical issues facing higher education and WMU. The group has been charged with providing leadership and guidance to the planning process, analyzing existing data and helping to set institutional metrics and targets. It is a fantastic group with representation of all of our stakeholders. We will continue to collect input from the campus community and ask for feedback at every stage of the process.
Our seven working groups began meeting at the end of the fall semester and are tasked with establishing institutional recommendations regarding their specific priority area. Their work will continue through the spring semester, a feature of which is hosting themed listening sessions each week through the end of March. We continue this week with two sessions from the Community Building group and one from the Internationalization group. Please register to attend sessions on our website.
In addition to the themed listening sessions from our working groups, we will also host a series of peer-facilitated values discussions that will focus on our institutional values. The goal of these discussions is to create space for colleagues to identify WMU’s values through a strengths and aspirations lens. These asset-based discussions will be led by a group of outstanding facilitators from multiple divisions. I am grateful for the time and thought this group will contribute to this important discussion throughout the semester. The first session will be on Thursday, Feb. 24; please join us.
Please join me in thanking all those individuals who are serving on the core team, working groups and steering committee. Their hard work and dedication to this process is very much appreciated. And, again, please consider participating in one (or more) of the many Strategic Planning events that will occur over the next several months.
Acting Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs
Vice Provost for Budget and Personnel