After extolling the inclusiveness of the process and scope of the 2012-2017 strategic plan, "A Time of Transformation," the Metropolitan State College of Denver Board of Trustees voted unanimously to approve it at its April 5 board meeting.
Strategic Planning Committee Co-chairs Associate to the President for Marketing and Communications Cathy Lucas and Faculty Senate President Kamran Sahami along with president of The Sanaghan Group, Patrick Sanaghan, presented the plan to the board that will guide Metro State for the next five years.
“There’s a lot to it,” observed Board Vice Chair Michelle Lucero. “We as a board need to make sure that you’re not killing yourselves to do it and that we create things that are measureable and sustainable.”
Sanaghan, who consults with colleges, companies and nonprofits about strategic planning and other high-level leadership issues, said that Metro State’s strategic plan is ambitious but listed several institutional attributes relative to its potential for success, among them: the right president at the right time, a commitment to transparency and progress assessment, a high-quality and engaged faculty and shared community affection.
“Pay attention to your culture,” he told the board, “it will be your competitive edge.”
In-depth, engaged process
The process began almost two years ago when President Stephen Jordan appointed the Strategic Planning Committee. Since then, the committee has gathered information and feedback from faculty, staff, alumni, students and other constituents, conducted 17 SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) analyses, crafted concept papers and held conferences on vision and goals. All in all more than 1,700 stakeholders weighed in on Metro State’s new strategic plan.
The document outlines four strategic themes—Student and Academic Success, Community Engagement and Regional Stewardship, Institutional Culture and Institutional Resources—under which goals, objectives and potential measures are enumerated. Woven throughout are “four distinct pillars”—diversity/inclusive excellence, democratic workplace, entrepreneurship and telling the Metro State story—that are core values that will guide the plan and its outcome.
“When I gave my first address on campus,” Jordan said, “I laid out a vision for the urban land grant university and the important mission urban institutions have in cities today. I said, we could become the preeminent land grant university. The committee has used that as a building block for a plan for this university as how we see our responsibility for transforming this major metropolitan area.
“The committee has done amazing service for the university in leading a comprehensive effort to develop a strategic plan that really represents who we are and where we are going in the future.”
While the overarching strategic plan was approved, the Strategic Planning Committee will continue to accept comments on the operational plan until April 16, after which the committee will finalize the document. A communications plan, that includes community town hall meetings and the development of collateral materials, will help disseminate details of the strategic plan institution-wide.
If you have any feedback on this plan, please contact Lucas at email@example.com or Sahami at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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