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10
Feb
2012

Draft of the Academic Strategic Plan

On behalf of the Academic Strategic Plan Task Force, please click here for the latest draft of the Academic Strategic Plan (ASP) for your review and feedback.  The plan includes three broad goals; objectives and strategies for achieving each goal; and multiple initiatives to support each strategy.

Please be aware that the ASP Task Force is still working to improve the specificity of the initiatives.  For example, we would like the initiative “increase merit-based academic scholarships” to read “increase academic merit-based scholarships by X% by 20XX.” We are in the process of gathering the baseline data necessary to include relevant targets and deadlines for these initiatives. For this reason, we have left the initiatives as they are without specific dates and goals until this information is acquired and made available to the Task Force members. It should be noted that we do not expect the substance of the initiatives to change, only the targets and dates.  If you have information or would like to help with developing specific metrics, please let us know. We welcome your input.

If you have questions or suggestions about this draft, please let us know by providing comments on this post.

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5
Jan
2012

Additional Resources

In articulating  the dependencies and externalities for the Academic Strategic Plan, these resources may be helpful.  Click on the highlighted words to go to the various resources. 

Longwood Resources:

Longwood’s Strategic Plan

Longwood’s Assessment of SCHEV Core Competency Measures

 

SCHEV (State Council of Higher Education in Virginia) Resources: 

SCHEV has comparative data on admission, retention, and graduation rates.

SCHEV 2010 Institutional Performance Evaluation: Longwood’s part of the report begins on p. 42 and is especially good on listing Longwood’s outreach activities.
 
 
STEM-Related Resources
Turning STEM into STEAM: This website is www.artstem.org, which examines the intersection between the arts and STEM.  The link takes you to a blog post about RISD (Rhode Island School of Design) President John Maeda’s discussion of adding the arts to STEM.   

 

These are just a few of the resources available.  Want to share others?  Add them in the comment section below.

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4
Jan
2012

External Factors to Consider

At the Board of Visitors meeting in December 2011, the Board members asked the Task Force to consider “externalities” shaping higher education in Virginia today and to show how the ASP will respond to these externalities.  This blog post will provide links to the main “externalities” the Task Force needs to consider. 

State Legislation: Top Jobs for the 21st Century

At the state level, the legislation shaping the context for higher education right now is the Virginia Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2011, aka “Top Jobs for the 21st Century” or “TJ21.”

This legislation grew out of recommendations by Governor Bob McDonnell’s Commission on Higher Education Reform, Innovation and Investment. 

The most concise summary of the legislation comes from the National Conference of State Legislatures.  As outlined on their website, the “Top Jobs 21” legislation seeks to increase the number of college graduates who are prepared to take on the jobs of the 21st century, which they predict will be in STEM-H (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math – and Health) fields.  The legislation focuses on three main goals: reform-based investment, affordable access, and economic opportunity.  To read more details about these goals, click here.

Another concise summary, along with the text of the legislation, is available at the Richmond Sunlight website.   

A less concise summary, but one that puts the legislation in the context of the 2005 Higher Education Restructuring Act, is available at the SCHEV (State Council of Higher Education of Virginia) website.

During June 2011, the chairman and co-chairman of the Governor’s Commission gave a presentation about the legislation.  The powerpoint of that presentation is available here.  Slides 15-21 are especially helpful in highlighting various aspects of the legislation.  

Longwood’s Six-Year Plan

One of the mandates of the Top Jobs 21 legislation was for every university to submit a Six-Year Plan that detailed how the institution would meet the goals of the legislation.  You can read Longwood’s Six-Year Plan, which had to be submitted in July 2011, by clicking here.   

Longwood’s leadership also had to submit a prioritized list of our spending initiatives.  You can see that list here.  Note there are three different categories: Funding Through Reallocations, Funding Through Tuition Increases, and Unfunded Initiatives.  Some of the reallocated money comes from the $850,000 the General Assembly allocated to Longwood for the Nursing Program that can now be reallocated for other STEM-H initiatives.

Grow By Degrees

This is an initiative spearheaded by the Virginia Business Higher Education Council (VBHEC).  The VBHEC is a nonpartisan, nonprofit partnership between Virginia business leaders and higher education leadership.  You can read more about the Grow By Degrees initiative here.  Be aware that there is some overlap between the VBHEC and the Top Jobs 21 legislation.  Thomas Farrell, who chaired of the Governor’s Commission on Higher Education Reform, Innovation, and Investment, is also a member of the Board of Directors of the VBHEC.

Know of additional “externalities” the Task Force should consider?  Provide links to resources in the Comments section below.

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1
Dec
2011

ASP Update

During the stakeholder meetings, many people asked whether it would be better to keep the six goals as they were or to consolidate and reorganize them. People commented that Goals 1 (Academic Excellence) and 2 (Intellectual Environment) seemed to be most prominent but also overlapped. In addition, some people suggested that a few of the goals were not written to be as closely tied to the academic mission as they could be.  Based on your feedback the Task Force has proposed a restructuring of the goals.

In this reorganization, the number of goals has been reduced from six down to three. You will probably recognize the basic themes of the revised goals because they mirror the three fundamental aspects of higher education: teaching, scholarship, and service. Goal 1 focuses on students and speaks to Longwood’s distinctive capabilities in providing a student-centered learning environment. Goal 2 focuses on scholarship and faculty/staff needs, and Goal 3 focuses on engaging the university’s external communities.

Because of the reduced goal structure, the objectives have taken on new prominence in the plan, essentially providing clarity and definition for the broad goals. While the three main goals are broad and inclusive, Longwood’s distinctive capabilities will be operationalized through the objectives under each goal. In all three goals we are trying to imbed objectives and strategies focused on diversity, innovation, continuity, and twenty-first century skills. In its present form, the list of strategies is incomplete and are only provided to serve as examples of the kinds of strategies we envision based on your feedback.

The Task Force continues to refine and develop these goals, objectives, and strategies as we move forward and will present a more completed plan to the campus in January. See the proposed revisions to the goal structure here.  We welcome your comments and feedback.  To provide feedback, please post a comment on the blog or send an email by clicking here.

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22
Sep
2011

Goal input meetings begin next week!

If you are particularly interested in one or more of the academic strategic plan goals, try to attend one of the goal input meetings.   In these meetings, you’ll be able to hear about the feedback we’ve received so far on that goal and you’ll have an opportunity to develop objectives and strategies for the goal.  Click here to see the goal input meeting schedule.

 

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