Enhance Understanding of the Mission:
- One area for future development is responding to the expanding reliance of students and external stakeholders on social media, and their expectations for video representation of information.
- These emerging areas will require that UW-Parkside identify new means to ensure the mission is widely available publicly and reaches the entirety of its constituencies effectively.
- The next level of planning is to engage in strategic planning at deeper levels throughout the university. For the next phase of the strategic plan, having strategic planning at the college level will help to further integrate planning across the institution and support the institution’s goal to integrate planning to ensure resources are used most effectively to fulfill the university’s mission.
Diversity and Inclusion:
- The findings from the Campus Climate Survey have been reviewed and discussed, and many of the recommendations have been incorporated into the goals and objectives in the strategic and academic plans, including implementation of Diversity Circles and additional programming by the Center for Ethnic Studies. UW-Parkside will continue to make inclusive excellence and welcoming campus community strategic goals for continuous improvement.
- Progress toward achieving the goals established by the Equity Scorecard and Campus Climate Survey continues to be of importance. To date, action subcommittees of the Inclusive Excellence Committee are moving specific priorities within these initiatives forward under the leadership of the senior diversity officer. The Inclusive Excellence Committee is working to implement the recommendations and will analyze their successes for future improvement.
- A growing number of students are older, require greater flexibility, and seek out programs and delivery formats that allow them to remain in the workforce while also attending classes.
- As a result, UW-Parkside is continually examining the current focus of its community engagement activities, and realigning those efforts to emphasize program development that supports adult nontraditional learners.
- Remaining focused on higher education for the 21st century, and the ever-changing needs of students and the communities served by the university, requires continual development of new initiatives/models. Ongoing planning, resources, and institution-wide acceptance of this strategic direction are necessary for success.
- In alignment with its strategic goals, UW-Parkside continues to plan and to further refine this shift in focus in support of the future needs of the students within the university’s region.
- The university currently holds the Carnegie Foundation’s Community Engagement classification and was selected in both the Curricular Engagement and Outreach and Partnerships categories. As part of its efforts to demonstrate its commitment to its community, UW-Parkside intends to reapply in 2015.
- The new application criteria will require the university to review and identify any institutional changes necessary to be successful and to ensure that changes that are in line with the strategic and academic plans.
Accessibility of Documentation:
- There are numerous examples in Criterion Two that document the policies and processes of the University of Wisconsin System, and the University of Wisconsin-Parkside. In some cases, retrieving the documentation could be simpler, and accessibility could be improved.
- As a future strategic goal, UW-Parkside will make documentation of its policies a priority.
- In addition, identifying new methods to make documentation accessible will also be pursued so that the university takes advantage of its document management systems, the web, and social media distribution opportunities.
Implementation of Online Course and Program Policy:
- UW-Parkside’s ability to offer online programs has thus far relied on consortia relationships; however, recent efforts have expanded the capacity for online delivery by promoting faculty adaptation of traditional course formats to online versions.
- As a result, the university is entering the next phase in its online course development and delivery: the potential of a fully online degree program.
- A strategic goal suggested by this self-study will be to create policies for current online course offerings and to support future efforts and ensure quality is maintained.
Improved Support for Research and Creative Activity:
- Concerns about the lack of support for research and creative activity, evidenced in grant submission data and the COACHE survey results, suggest there are challenges to maintaining both a productive faculty, as well as a high level of student involvement in high impact practices.
- As next steps, colleges and member departments should explore opportunities within their strategic planning efforts to support and encourage faculty productivity and new opportunities to engage students.
New Program Development:
- The past 10 years have seen significant creativity and entrepreneurship in the creation and implementation of new programs. Going forward, new program development will continue to be a priority to ensure UW-Parkside is responsive to its stakeholders, meets the evolving needs of its students, and addresses continually declining state support.
- As UW-Parkside continues to become increasingly diverse, a focus on new course and program development at the general education level and within the programs would contribute to further enhancing the university’s inclusive excellence goals.
Improved Documentation of Assessment:
- Several academic programs, in particular general education, provide models for continuous improvement through assessment. For instance, as of this writing, the General Education Committee plans to establish criteria for the distribution categories, revisit the need for an upper-level or capstone GenEd requirement, consider requiring a lab component in the natural sciences, and establish minimum expectations for all learning outcomes.
- Evidence also suggests several programs and services can improve substantially in their assessment and documentation. Effective communication and clear role definitions related to assessment and continuous improvement are needed campus wide.
Integration and Sustainability of Assessment:
- Efforts to improve assessment have made significant progress. The General Education Program provided the foundation and acted as a catalyst for the development of shared learning goals and progress in refining program-level learning goals and outcomes.
- The next strategic direction for the university is to integrate assessment of student learning outcomes at the general education, academic major, co-curricular and institutional levels, to ensure that assessment initiatives become further embedded within organizational structures and traditions, and to develop an assessment structure that is coordinated across the four colleges.
- Further enhancement of the university’s assessment efforts will also include assessment of co-curricular programs and initiatives and broadly sharing student learning outcomes results to university stakeholders.
- The dramatic shift in funding from state support to a student-financed education presents obvious challenges for both students and the university.
- From the university perspective, tuition has become the primary revenue stream to support the mission. In response, substantial resources have been invested in enrollment management and related support services, while new academic programs have been developed under diminishing budgets.
- Strategic recruitment, access to better information to support forecasting and planning, and improved retention help the university fulfill its mission and will result in improved finances.
Implementation and Refinement of Integrated Resource Planning Process:
- The university has just begun implementation of a new model for planning and budgeting. This new model should result in improved transparency and accountability and increased incentives to encourage the development of revenue-generating programs. The improved process is a key step toward improving the efficiency of UW-Parkside and achieving its strategic goals.
Improve External Funding:
- UW-Parkside continues to work on processes and activities that will increase funding through its foundation. Increased giving during these difficult financial times helps fund and sustain needed scholarships and other UW-Parkside initiatives that serve its students, faculty, and community. Identifying new opportunities for external funding and creating strategic goals to obtain external funding will be a strategic goal going forward.
Strategic Planning at the College Level to Align with the University’s Strategic and Academic Plans:
- Several departments have created strategic plans that help guide their decision making. Decentralizing budgets make strategic planning even more crucial to the colleges and departments.
- Because planning is essential to UW-Parkside’s future, a concerted effort will be made to develop strategic plans at all levels of the university that align with the Parkside Promise and the academic plan. These plans will further improve the effectiveness and efficiency of each unit and will work together to improve the effectiveness of the university as a whole.
- Continuing to identify and prioritize staffing will be an important strategic goal going forward to ensure the university is achieving its strategic and academic plan goals and sustaining the work already underway.
Faculty and Staff Compensation and Professional Development:
- This future direction is one of importance to faculty and staff, and is essential to recruit and retain high-quality students, faculty, and staff.
- Identifying new opportunities to compensate staff and provide professional development is inextricably linked to budget. Therefore, this future strategic goal must be addressed by careful planning and good financial stewardship of available funds.
Facilities Maintenance and Renovation:
- There will be a continuing need campus wide to maintain and regularly renovate these facilities. Collaborations within each college, and among similar disciplines, will improve resource sharing and enhance outside funding opportunities to address this need.
- Space planning and the campus master planning process will also be key priorities to ensure facilities address the academic and strategic goals of the university.
- Technology will play a pivotal role in new program development, facilities, and the future of online course and program delivery at UW-Parkside.
- While UW-Parkside benefits from its membership in the UW System regarding some technologies, future technology needs on campus will continue to grow and expand. At the same time, maintaining the current technology infrastructure will also be a priority.
- In the next strategic plan, technology planning and maintenance will be a core goal to ensure that strategic and academic goals are achieved and UW-Parkside is able to meet the growing technology needs and demands of its students, faculty, and stakeholders.