Major themes emerging in strategic planning process

December 7, 2016 | News, UToday
By Barbara J. Owens



Using the input received from more than 700 people online and at discussion sessions throughout the University, the strategic planning committee has been meeting regularly to understand and organize the ideas and suggestions.

Once all of the ideas were sorted into categories, the committee created work groups to conduct brainstorming sessions on each topic. Dozens of individuals with specific areas of expertise or experience relating to each of the topic areas were invited to participate in the brainstorming sessions, where associated challenges and opportunities were discussed.

The topics of the work groups included the following: research; reputation and visibility; undergraduate student success; athletics; comprehensiveness; working at UT; graduate and professional education; community engagement; fiscal health; and fundraising.

“I am very pleased to see meaningful strategic direction and initiatives generated at the grassroots level through a bottom-up process,” said Dr. Andrew Hsu, provost and leader of the strategic planning initiative. “We were also excited to see that there was overlap in the ideas generated in different groups, which indicates we are generally aligned as a community on the direction we should be taking our university.”

After sharing the input from the work groups, the planning committee has begun to narrow the focus a bit more. It will be working to identify major themes and associated initiatives in the coming months.

“I am very pleased at the progress we are making,” said President Sharon L. Gaber. “We recognize that this process requires a great deal of time from a lot of people who also have day jobs. We are so appreciative of all the work that has gone into this, and I am personally very excited to see how this will guide and shape The University of Toledo in the future.”