2021-22 Strategic Planning Process

In fall 2021, under the leadership of the Office of the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs and with guidance from the Strategic Planning Core Team, a seventeen-member, cross-campus Strategic Plan Steering Committee was established and charged to develop a 10-year Strategic Plan with a 3-4-3-year evaluation framework.

Several campus-wide initiatives grounded the University as we established and identified the seven institutional key priorities that will set the focus for our future. These initiatives included the 2013 and 2020 Campus Climate Studies, the 2019 Employee Engagement Survey, the Racial Justice Advisory Committee and the results of the identity-focused Think Big activities that helped form the creation of Rethink Smart.

Seven cross-campus working groups composed of faculty, staff, students and community members were formed during fall 2021 to address our institutional key priorities—Academic Excellence, Community Building, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI), Research and Creative Scholarship, Sustainability, Internationalization and Well-being.

Over the course of the 2021-2022 academic year, the Strategic Planning Core Team shared information with and welcomed input from our internal and external community members through campus communication channels and the social media platforms of Facebook and Instagram. We also facilitated numerous engagement opportunities across all stakeholder groups. These engagement activities were open to all members of our campus community, and we received over 1,000 responses in total.

The data and feedback collected through engagement sessions was consistently utilized throughout the Strategic Planning process as we re-examined our mission and vision and identified institutional strengths, opportunities and aspirations. Through this process, the Strategic Plan Steering Committee approved drafts of Western’s new vision, mission and value statements in spring 2022. At the same time, the working groups submitted their first drafts of their recommendations, which included a key priority goal, objectives and sample strategies and metrics.

These drafts were refined by the Strategic Planning Core Team and returned to working groups for their confirmation to move forward for a final review process undertaken by the University’s Diversity Committee, Strategic Plan Steering Committee, and the Provost and the Strategic Planning Core Team during fall 2022. 

The finalized version of the Strategic Plan was reviewed for feedback and endorsement by the President’s Cabinet, and the WMU’s Board of Trustees in fall 2022.