November 19, 2013 2:15PM
With construction going on all around, Pittsburg State University officials gathered on the stage of the Center for the Arts, Tuesday, to talk about a new strategic plan for the university. Although there were many locations on campus where it would have been easier to make the announcement, officials said they wanted to hold the event at the unfinished building to demonstrate the power and importance of planning.
“The Center for the Arts was, at one time, considered by some to be an unachievable dream,” President Scott said. “In less than a year, the seats behind me will be filled with an audience and the stage we stand on today will be filled with performers. It will not be a dream. It will not be a wish. It will be reality. That is the power of planning. That is the power of sharing and communicating a vision.”
Brad Hodson, vice president for university advancement and co-chair of the university’s new strategic planning task force, began the event by listing some of the major accomplishments of the university’s current strategic plan, which ends in 2015. He noted record enrollment, the completion of a $120 million capital campaign, increases in scholarships and the construction of the Center for the Arts.
“Each of these amazing accomplishments and many more just like them are the result of our campus and community coming together in support of our current strategic plan,” Hodson said.
President Scott acknowledged the successes of the current strategic plan and said it is now time to look into and plan for the future.
“It is time to look ahead to the next decade and decide where we want to be as an institution,” Scott said. “In the coming months, the Strategic Planning Task Force will focus like a laser on the future.”
He said the changing environment for higher education holds both risks and opportunities for PSU.
“Never has the world of higher education been in a greater state of flux,” Scott said. “Competitive and financial pressures, along with the onslaught of disruptive technologies, make this a time of great peril, but more importantly, a time of great opportunity.
“In order to remain relevant we must look beyond the current challenges and focus on a future that allows our graduates to not just exist but to thrive and drive change in the world. We must prepare to teach students in fields of study that we don’t yet recognize and do it with technology that doesn’t yet exist.”
Dr. Jan Smith, who with Hodson, co-chairs the task force, said the 20 members of the task force, who represent faculty, staff, students and the community, take their responsibilities seriously.
“These 20 men and women will be focused on completing two important tasks over the next 18 months,” Smith said. “The first is the development of a strategic plan that, as President Scott noted, is both visionary and quantifiable. But that isn’t enough. This group will also be tasked with developing a new method of integrating this strategic plan into the daily lives of our campus family.”
Members of the Strategic Planning Task Force are:
Dai Li, from Analysis, Planning and Assessment; Deatrea Rose, from Enrollment Management; Misty Button, from Budget and Human Resource Services; David Adams, from Campus Life; Chris Kelly, from University Advancement; Angela Neria, from the President’s Office; Paul Grimes, representing college deans; Bob Frisbee, representing college chairs; Kevin Bracker, from the College of Business; Janice Jewett, from the College of Education; Carol Werhan and Hazel Coltharp, from the College of Arts & Sciences; Brian Sanford, from the College of Technology; Randy Roberts, from Academic Affairs; Tim Anderson, representing classified staff; Ellen Carter, representing unclassified staff; Kiki Eigenmann, representing Pitt State students; and Marty Beezley, representing the community.