Slippery Rock University Strategic Planning Committee
Tuesday, January 23, 2007
University Club, North Hall, Slippery Rock Campus
President Robert M. Smith called the meeting to order and announced the addition of two meetings to the schedule. The additional meetings will provide opportunity for the Vice President’s to discuss their divisional goals and give members a scope of work within each division. Dates and times for the two additional meetings will be announced.
Middle States Expectations – Dr. Neil Cosgrove and Ms. Cynthia Dillon
Dr. Cosgrove and Ms. Dillon presented a power-point presentation detailing the expectations of the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (see attached). Ms. Dillon and Dr. Cosgrove emphasized the importance of compiling and obtaining accurate and detailed data for institutional assessment. The institution’s mission and goals must be directly linked to on-going planning and resource allocation. The institution must develop and implement an assessment process that evaluates its overall effectiveness in achieving its mission and goals and its compliance with accreditation standards.
Spellings Report – Robert M. Smith
President Smith provided a summary of the Spellings’ Commission Report (September, 2006) to the committee: (see attached)
Four Issues of Concern:
- ACCESS: We found that access to American Higher Education is unduly limited by the complex interplay of inadequate preparation, lack of information, and persistent financial barriers.
- COST AND AFFORDABILITY: The commission notes with concern the seemingly inexorable increase in college costs, which have outpaced inflation for the past two decades and have made affordability an ever growing worry.
- FINANCIAL AID: We found that our financial aid system is confusing, complex, inefficient, duplicative, and frequently does not direct aid to students who truly need it.
- LEARNING: The quality of student learning at U.S. colleges and universities is inadequate and, in some cases, declining.
Two Directions for Change:
- TRANSPARENCY AND ACCOUNTABILITY: We have noted a remarkable shortage of clear, accessible information about crucial aspects of American colleges and universities, from financial aid to graduation rates. This lack of useful data and accountability hinders policymakers and the public from making informed decisions and prevents higher education from demonstrating its contributions to the public good.
- INNOVATION: We found numerous barriers to investment in innovation risks hampering the ability of postsecondary institutions to address national workforce needs and compete in the global marketplace.
- The U.S. commit to an unprecedented effort to expand higher education access and success by improving student preparation and persistence, addressing nonacademic barriers and providing significant increases in aid to low-income students.
- The entire student financial aid system be restructured and new incentives put in place to improve the measurement and management of costs and institutional productivity.
- Higher education must change from a system primarily based on reputation to one based on performance
- Developing a national strategy for lifelong learning
- Embracing a culture of continuous innovation and quality improvement by developing new pedagogies, curricula, and technologies to improve learning, particularly in the area of science and mathematical literacy.
- Increasing federal investment in areas critical to our nation’s global competitiveness.
Timeline of Activities for 2007
January 23 University Club 7:30 – 9:00 a.m.
February 15 University Club 7:30 – 9:00 a.m.
February 15 PA Room 12:15 – 1:45 p.m.
March 20 University Club 7:30 – 9:00 a.m.
April 17 University Club 7:30 – 9:00 a.m.
May 3 University Club 7:30 – 9:00 a.m.
Following brief discussion, President Smith adjourned the meeting.
Next Meeting Date
The next meeting date of the Strategic Planning Committee is February 15, 2007. Two meetings will take place: At the morning session, Dr. Amanda Yale will present an overview of the Foundations of Excellence, and provide an update to Slippery Rock University’s Enrollment Strategies. At the afternoon session, Mr. Mike Langley, Allegheny Conference on Community Development, will present the Allegheny Conference perspective on economic development needs for our region.
Respectfully Submitted – Tina L. Moser