U of M Board of Regents continue work on system-wide strategic plan

September 8, 2017
Glass apple with university seal

The University of Minnesota’s Board of Regents held their first meeting of the 2017-2018 academic year this week. President Kaler provided an update on system-wide strategic planning, which launched in fall 2016. In June 2017, the Board approved the University of Minnesota System-Wide Strategic Framework, which focuses on how the University will function as a system while preserving the distinctiveness of each campus.

“The System-Wide Strategic Plan drives much of what we do on all of our campuses for the foreseeable future,” said President Kaler. “I am prepared to lead this effort and drive it in a thoughtful way, listening closely to many stakeholders. When our work is completed, it will direct us to many decisions on what we teach, how we research, the nature of our public engagement and the foundation of our budget.”

The completion of a system-wide strategic plan that incorporates an academic program investment strategy and a long-term financial framework is one of the Board’s priorities for the year ahead. On Friday, Kaler presented his plan to appoint a Strategic Planning Oversight Committee, which will coordinate planning efforts around five strategic focus areas:

  1. Research & Discovery
  2. Outreach & Public Engagement
  3. Teaching & Learning
  4. Medicine & Health
  5. Supporting the Mission

Additionally, the Board received an update from the System Enrollment Management Workgroup. Eleven leaders from across the University system provided recommendations and next steps in system-wide enrollment management – including maximizing system undergraduate enrollment, raising the regional, national and international profile of the U of M in support of the University Progress Card goals and State of Minnesota legislative metrics for enrolling Minnesota residents and enhancing diversity.

New college deans

The Board also welcomed new college deans. U of M President Eric Kaler officially introduced Regents to Carol Strohecker, dean of the College of Design, and Lynda Welage, dean of the College of Pharmacy.

As dean, Strohecker provides strategic leadership and administrative oversight to the University’s College of Design, one of the country’s most comprehensive design colleges. Strohecker previously served as vice provost for academic affairs at the Rhode Island School of Design from 2013-2016.

Welage is dean, chief executive officer and chief academic officer of the College of Pharmacy, a leader in innovative pharmacy education, research, policy and practice development. The college offers professional and graduate programs on both the Twin Cities and Duluth campuses. Welage previously served as dean of the College of Pharmacy at the University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, where she was a professor of Pharmacy Practice and Administrative Sciences.

The Board also:

  • Publically kicked off Driven: The University of Minnesota Campaign, with a goal to raise $4 billion to support students, faculty, research and outreach missions system-wide. The campaign is the University's first system-wide campaign since the last one closed in 2003.  Read more: twin-cities.umn.edu/news-events/u-launches-system-wide-fundraising-campaign-goal-4-billion-2021.
  • Discussed the University’s 2018 capital budget request to the Minnesota Legislature, which focuses on asset preservation and building maintenance on all five campuses. The Board is scheduled to vote on the 2018 capital request during its October meeting.  
  • Recognized the University of Minnesota Libraries for their outstanding service and outreach to the University's global community of students and scholars, as well as the State of Minnesota. Regents applauded University Librarian Wendy Pradt Lougee and acknowledged the University of Minnesota Libraries' 2017 National Medal for Museum and Library Service, the nation's highest honor given to museums and libraries for service to the community. The U of M Libraries is just the third academic library to win the award in 23 years.
  • Voted to amend the sponsorship agreement for TCF Bank Stadium to immediately invest $8 million in the University’s Athletes Village, a project to modernize athletics facilities and deliver a first-class experience for all current and former student-athletes. The amendment also provides the University with $541,000 in additional revenue over the remaining term of the agreement. Read more: gophersports.com/genrel/090717aaa.html.

The Board is scheduled to meet next on October 12 and 13, 2017. Go to regents.umn.edu for more information. 

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