Student success at forefront of strategic planning goals
March 10, 2023
The IUPUI strategic planning process continues to move forward.
The plan will align with IU 2030, the university’s seven-year strategic plan, and will be closely integrated with Vision 2024, the realignment of Indiana University and Purdue University programs in Indianapolis.
An executive committee is leading all aspects of the campus-level strategic plan process. Members are reviewing updated draft plans from subcommittees in three core strategic areas: Student Success and Opportunity, Transformative Research and Creativity, and Service to the State and Beyond.
Shannon McCullough, assistant dean of admissions and student affairs and associate faculty of art therapy in the Herron School of Art + Design, serves on the executive committee. She talked to IUPUI Today about the strategic plan process and what comes next.
Question: What are some of the main objectives, actions and metrics included in the proposed plan?
Answer: Diversity, equity and inclusion is a common theme in all three core strategic areas, from objectives around student success, research and curriculum, to connections with our community, state and abroad. The actions speak to eliminating barriers for minority populations and promoting an inclusive campus community and academic environment.
There is also a focus in many areas on providing a consistent, standardized experience for all students in high-impact practices, professional development and wrap-around services. This supports the overall strategic focus to reduce administrative barriers and increase access to areas shown to improve student success.
Q: The executive committee is made up of stakeholders from various units, schools and disciplines. How did you work together to synthesize and evaluate recommendations from the subcommittees?
A: The full committee broke into smaller review teams, assigning one primary reviewer who held the responsibility of gathering feedback from other members, leading the written response from the team, and synthesizing the comments from the open meetings with the full executive committee. The leaders of the executive committee process paired us with areas where we have some direct experience aligning with our role and can appropriately evaluate the objectives and actions proposed.
I appreciated the vast diversity of thought, expertise and knowledge that we have in both the broader executive committee and within each review team. Within the three I served on, we all contributed aspects to build upon what was provided in substantial ways and held critical vantage points from our unique experiences.
Q: What are your takeaways from the ideas and feedback presented by the subcommittees?
A: Student success is truly in the forefront of the goals in our strategic planning for what will be IU Indianapolis, after the 2024 transition. We always come back to what is contributing to the holistic education and development of both the future students within our communities and abroad, and those we currently serve.
We are also guided by a key value principle we hold at IUPUI: our metropolitan community. With appreciation of our history in this city and the contribution we make as the urban campus of Indianapolis, we hold the responsibility to cultivate partnerships, eliminate boundaries, strengthen the workforce and increase access to our campus in a variety of efforts.
Q: What are the next steps in the process?
A: The broader committee is in the process of reviewing revisions to each core strategy and providing feedback on goals and objectives put forward. Executive Vice Chancellor Kathy Johnson is gathering our responses to create the formal document for the strategic plan. We are also providing feedback on language for the mission, vision and values to ensure we align with the strategic goals set forward in this plan.
Q: What else would you like faculty, staff, students and other stakeholders to know about IUPUI’s strategic planning process and IU 2030?
A: I believe we can all appreciate the value student voices have had in our strategic planning process, both those serving on the executive committee and in the forming of the subcommittee reports. Many changes to the committee reports have been due to students giving insight most of us cannot speak to. Their lived experience and hopes for what IU Indianapolis will be for them in the future has been incredibly influential, and their passion is inspiring.
I will also say that we are committed to holding great collegiality, respect for diverse viewpoints and synergy amongst the process of trying to show value in the vast number of voices informing our plan. From the students to our executive leadership, I am proud to be in a group of people so dedicated to this campus and willing to commit the energy this takes to complete the work. We hold pride in what has rooted us in this city and have great commitment to goals that will move us forward in transformational ways in the next chapter of this great campus.