The strategic plan outlined in the following pages is a collaborative work, a snapshot of our collective wisdom. This plan is a rededication to our mission, a reaffirmation of who we are, and a reflection on our accomplishments. This plan embodies the deep passion and appreciation that students, faculty, staff, alumni, and friends have for Eastern Illinois University, and it expresses our joint expectation of excellence in all we do. more
Patrick Sanaghan's Collaborative Strategic Planning in Higher Education served as the guide for Eastern’s strategic planning process. Sanaghan has shared his expertise on strategic planning, leadership development and facilitation techniques with more than 100 colleges and universities during the past 25 years. Sanaghan and his frequent collaborator Larry Goldstein, President of Campus Strategies, served as consultants for the planning process.
The planning process took place during calendar year 2011 and had five phases:
President Perry, in consultation with the President's Council, appointed three co-chairs to lead the strategic planning effort: Assege HaileMariam, Professor of Psychology; Ken Baker, Director of Campus Recreation; and William Weber, Vice President for Business Affairs. An open invitation to serve was issued to the campus community, and a 28-member steering committee was appointed. The steering committee reflected the diversity of the University community, and the majority of members were veteran, mid-career and early career faculty from the Colleges and Booth Library. Trustees Robert Webb and Leo Welch served as representatives of the Board of Trustees.
In this phase, the steering committee meaningfully engaged stakeholders, both on and off campus, in discussions about our core values, the current and future challenges that we face, and the critical issues that we must proactively manage. More than 900 individuals participated in more than 60 engagement sessions. Data generated during this phase were compiled and posted on the strategic planning website to help ensure transparency of the process.
The main goal for the third phase was to identify and develop the dominant strategic themes that emerged from the planning exercises and discussions of the prior phase. In a daylong meeting, the steering committee reviewed the information gathered from stakeholders and distilled it into a manageable number of strategic priorities. Six strategic themes were identified:
Steering committee members prepared a concept paper on each of the identified strategic priorities. The concept papers summarized the information gathered from the previous phase and presented the relevant issues in a clear and understandable way for both internal and external stakeholders.
A vision conference was organized to give stakeholders, both internal and external, the opportunity to review and discuss the strategic priorities. The vision conference had three main stages: review and discussion of the concept papers, sharing of stakeholder group interests and perspectives, and outlining a shared vision for the university’s future. The outcomes for the vision conference were shared with the university’s governance groups and with the campus community in open sessions. These discussions resulted in a new university vision statement.
About 80 representatives from across campus, including the steering committee members and representatives from governance groups, met in a daylong goals conference. The assembled group drafted strategic goals for each of the concept paper themes and action plans to achieve each of the identified goals. The steering committee refined these ideas, and drafts of the strategic plan were shared with the campus community through governance groups and open sessions.