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UD Strategic Visioning Process

(Provost Paul Benson E-mail to Campus Community, Aug. 31, 2016)

Dr. Eric Spina is launching a yearlong, university-wide strategic visioning process this fall.  This process, which will focus on the University’s long-term aspirations over the next 20 years, will invite and draw upon the experiences, expertise, insights and passions of all members of the UD community, as well as alumni and friends.  

The results of the visioning process will contribute to the themes and signature concepts that Dr. Spina will set forth during his installation next April.  The visioning process also will inform University priorities and goal setting, and ultimately will shape the direction of a future University campaign. 

In short, this year's conversations and convenings concerning the University's future direction will be important.  President Spina will describe the fundamental purposes and character of the strategic visioning process in his remarks at the faculty meeting on Friday, Sept. 9 and the staff meeting on Monday, Sept. 12. These meetings will offer an important opportunity to understand and begin discussing the great value that this process will hold for UD’s future.  Please plan to attend to learn more about the many ways in which you will be able to participate in this project.  

Dr. Spina has asked me to co-chair the Steering Committee that will facilitate and organize this visioning work.  Dr. Michelle Pautz, associate professor of Political Science and director of the Master of Public Administration program, will serve as the committee’s other co-chair.  Dr. Pautz received the University’s alumni award in teaching last spring and is an active and productive scholar of public policy.  Michelle will bring the eyes of a new faculty generation to the Steering Committee's work.  

The other Steering Committee members include the following faculty members:  John McCombe, Danielle Poe, Vijay Asari, Malcolm Daniels, and Randy Sparks – each of whom is co-chair of one of five working groups for the visioning process (described below) – along with Mark Jacobs (nominated by and a member of the Executive Committee of the Academic Senate) and Kathy Webb, who represents the academic deans. 

In addition, the Steering Committee includes Hayley Clark, a junior undergraduate, and Rudra Gnawali, a doctoral student and graduate assistant in Electro-Optics.  Jaci Jackson in UDit will represent UD staff, and Father Jim Fitz, S.M., Andy Horner, Jennifer Howe and Molly Wilson will represent offices on the President’s Council that will be critically important to the visioning work.  Rick Omlor, who chairs the Facilities Committee of our Board of Trustees, will represent the Board.  Lauren Wright, a second-year MPA graduate student, will assist the committee with logistics and communication. 

Due to the visioning process’s broad scope and far-reaching time horizon, we also have empaneled five working groups, with faculty, staff and student members, who will engage the campus in exploring wide-ranging themes related to the University’s mission and goals.  The membership and guiding themes for these working groups are described in the attachment.  Each group includes at least one faculty member nominated by ECAS.  

The attachment also describes some of the common lenses through which all of the working groups are to address their themes, including: differentiation, innovation, and excellence; attention to our Catholic and Marianist mission and values; responsiveness to the demands of diversity, equity, and inclusion, along with global and intercultural learning and scholarship; and realistic appraisal of UD’s absolute and relative strengths, potential, and limitations, considered within the broader landscape of American higher education. 

Additional communications about the visioning process, along with a website for the project and an initial calendar of visioning events and “labs,” will be forthcoming.  

Please take the opportunity this year to share your imaginative ambitions for the University of Dayton's future over the next two decades.  The quality of the visioning process and the collective impact of the resulting vision for the University of Dayton will depend upon your voices and your perspectives.  

Strategic Visioning Working Groups: Membership and Charge attachment (pdf) >>