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Themes for 2020-2025 Strategic Planning

Theme 1: Advancing Knowledge and Scholarship for an Evolving Society

Delivering a quality education inside and outside the classroom and ongoing viability of the institution.

  • This theme ties in with USG 2025 Report’s Adaptability section. This section addresses issues of access, multiple degree pathways and degree delivery modalities.

Value reflected in this theme: Excellence

Listening Session Feedback: Theme 1

  • It is important to mention research - both faculty and undergraduate research - in the strategic plan.
  • Research goals can cut across several of these theme areas.
  • How are we defining quality?
  • Measure and hold responsible
  • Using the SMART approach
  • Quality return to academic excellence/rigor
  • Create degrees that are more narrowly focused.
  • Concentrate on Language Arts and culture
  • State is moving toward specialization
  • Careers that don’t exist yet
  • Be lifelong learners and adapt
  • With boards, is it practical?
  • Core – foundation
  • Careful with distinction for Tech
  • Leadership institutions emphasis
  • USG spending much time educating legislators?
  • Have to educate up/Legislators control
  • Purse strings/politics
  • Language focus exclusively on classroom/limit faculty?
  • Scholarly pursuits
  • Tie values to Themes
  • Research/Teaching balance

Theme 2: Developing the Whole Person

Instilling leadership skills, ethics, self-reliance, resiliency and grit in our people

  • This theme is in line with USG 2025 Report’s Essential Skills section, which discusses soft skills.

Value reflected in this theme: Integrity

Listening Session Feedback: Theme 2

  • Students are troubled by anxiety and a lack of effective study skills.
  • Concern for the number of students with mental and behavioral issues. As we find ways to support students, it is important to remember that support does not mean removing all stress from students’ lives. Too much hand holding is not in students’ best interest.  Rather, it is important to teach coping skills and resilience as opposed to attempting to remove all stress.  
  • However, we need to also keep in mind that some students come to us having already faced extreme challenges in life. Interventions cannot be one-size-fits-all.  We must find ways to meet student needs without making students dependent on that aid.  Ideas include bridge programs for certain students.
  • It is important to focus on wellness and to help all UNG members (i.e., students, faculty & staff) to achieve balance in life (e.g., work-life balance).
  • Concern for the number of students with mental and behavioral issues
  • Faculty are seeing more volatile outburst
  • Students are unprepared for college experience
  • Faculty are front line reporters
    • Need support for training faculty
    • Extend training and awareness
    • Add a wellness component to training
    • Chancellor has developed a task force for recommendations
      • Should have information in early spring
  • Pushing rigor pushes student reactions
  • Onboard expectations of rigor/social pressures
    • First Year Experience
  • Grit vs. perseverance
    • Perseverance means something else in Army
  • Growth mindset – insert in to language
  • Coping/decision-making skills
  • Themes develop policies?
    • A student can drop up until midpoint now.
  • Increase in mental health/ emotional intelligence?
  • Factors of wellness

Theme 3: Integrating the Institution and the Community

Engagement, service learning, co-curricular activities, campus identities, branding, etc. 

  • Words associated with engagement from the UNG webpage include active involvement, intellectual inquiry and creativity, collaboration & community partnership.

Values reflected in this theme: Service and Engagement

Listening Session Feedback: Theme 3

  • In determining the plan for programs on the different campuses, we need to have information on the projected growth on these campuses. The Strategic Plan for Enrollment Management should help with this.  The two committees are sharing information.
  • University not ready to support service learning
    • Resources are not there
  • Faculty agreements with outside entity
    • Implementation of ideas
    • Need to have expanding resources
    • Need standardization of agreements/contracts
    • Campus identity
      • OneUNG
      • Respect different campuses
    • Academic and degree programs
    • Leeway to College to determine academics/programs
    • Provost is working with Academic Deans
    • Resources are market driven
    • Ongoing to continue to build on previous Strategic Plan Goals
    • Assumption to continue campus culture
    • Engrained in who we are
  • 5 campuses create challenges/integration
  • Missing words: “mutually beneficial”
  • State responsibility to serve community
  • Integration more key as students take classes on different campuses
  • UNG Alma Mater – DAH/GVL mentioned only – OCN left out
  • Have all campuses referenced or none

Theme 4: Inclusion and Diversity

Education that is for everyone. A focus on building diversity across the institution.

  • UNG defines student-focus as “Facilitating success and educational goal attainment for all students and fostering a welcoming environment that values and reflects diversity and inclusion.”

Value reflected in this theme: Student-Focus

Listening Session Feedback: Theme 4

  • Diversity and inclusion initiatives should not be focused solely on the student body. Diversity must be also a priority in hiring faculty/staff.  We cannot be inclusive if students do not see people who are similar to themselves working at UNG.
  • Mirror diversity trained to provide welcoming environment
  • Work with community leaders
  • Faculty are most excited about Themes 4 & 5
  • International student support
    • High cost student comes with high expectations
    • Balance with curriculum
  • Need training for faculty and staff
    • Professional development
  • Global leaders built into Theme 4
  • Chance for Study Abroad
  • Bring internationals to different campuses
  • Language can be unintentionally conveying white supremacy
    • Language needs to change
    • “Equity “ in theme versus inclusion
      • Equity means we support it/connecting to it with resources
      • Actions means words
      • Commitment to equity in outcomes (tracking student success)
    • Break through barriers to have hard discussions
    • Strategic Plan should help you determine direction to apply resources
    • Adding action words to # 4 and #5
    • Add “faculty”, not just students
    • Educate local communities

Theme 5: Infrastructure and Resources

Facilities, technology, staffing, partnerships, sustainability and scalability

  • Developing a goal for strategic growth that incorporates a more comprehensive approach to resource projection and funding is a good idea.

Value reflected in this theme: Excellence

Listening Session Feedback: Theme 5

  • We should examine how we can save money through sustainability initiatives and how these savings can be reinvested into UNG.
  • We need to look at how the physical spaces on campus affect productivity. For example, a lack of lab space affects teaching, scholarship, and student engagement.
  • We need to consider how we downsize effectively when and where this is appropriate.
  • We need to consider how we will evaluate the effectiveness of an investment in a particular initiative so that we can effectively use our limited resources. This should be part of the implementation plan.
  • Faculty office space
    • No place to be
    • Would like to be congress with other scholars
    • Faculty has no home
  • Space for students to sit and talk with faculty
  • Looking at space utilization
    • Geared to 18-25 year olds
    • Consider adult population
      • Evening program
      • Hybrid classes
    • Students need evening services
    • 50 minute sessions are bad for upper level students
    • Should not utilize space only to meet goal
      • Need to meet academic need
    • Diversity – look and think alike
  • Missing lab spaces
  • Rare to get donations for facilities
    • Most expect State to provide facilities
  • Online classes are filling faster
    • Consider electronic footprint
    • Masters courses are online not in brick and mortar
    • Same staffing for 8 original classes now supporting 30 classes
    • Online tuition has very strict guidelines for funding
  • Not just facilities – staffing, etc.
  • Prepare now for new enrollment shift
  • Oconee campus is a cortically designed space for performance.
  • Don’t bring a student to campus if we don’t think they can be successful.
  • Facilities master plan – some review
  • Not able to cultivate faculty research (STEM)
  • Wellness – no space
  • Can’t produce scholarship with current facilities
  • Gain tenure/sustain jobs
  • Staffing
    • Move toward non-tenured faculty
    • Irresponsible to bring faculty here if can’t support them
  • Students
    • Three students serving on Committee
    • Listening sessions for them?
  • Orientation space? We’ll make it happen, but…
  • Students don’t have their own space.

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