Baylor University's Draft Strategic Plan Released for Review and Feedback

Jan. 11, 2012

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According to schedule, following approval by the Baylor University Board of Regents at its 2011 homecoming meeting, the university has published an online draft of its 10-year strategic plan . The University is inviting the Baylor community to review the draft plan and provide feedback. As a continuation of its strategic planning process, Baylor officials will hold on-campus meetings to consider the plan publicly and more fully. Comments and suggestions will be accepted on the strategic planning website through March, and the plan will be finalized at the end of the fiscal year in May.

Baylor President Ken Starr, in a letter sent to faculty, staff, students, alumni, parents and friends of Baylor, wrote that feedback has been critical in the development of the draft, and it will continue to inform the university's thinking as the plan moves toward finalization.

"The Strategic Themes Report synthesizes contributions made during our five-month exercise to envision what Baylor could be in the future and presents the findings in the form of theme-based summaries," he wrote. "The Strategic Themes report has proven indispensable as we have moved forward in the strategic planning process.

"Our draft plan is respectful of the vast reservoirs of expertise that are so prevalent on our campus. It does not set forth a narrow project list for the next decade. It anticipates that in a world so rapidly changing, the best-laid plans need to be flexible, and forward-thinking institutions must remain nimble enough to be responsive to emerging opportunities," Starr continued.

He noted that 2011 was a "remarkable year in Baylor's illustrious history. We've faced challenges and overcome adversity, heralded significant academic discoveries, witnessed the extraordinary impact of Baylor students and alumni in our community, across the nation and around the world, and enjoyed the exhilaration of athletic achievement. In the coming year, we will celebrate the successful culmination of Baylor 2012 and, with your support and God's grace, launch the plan that will herald our next decade of remarkable progress."

Baylor Executive Vice President and Provost Elizabeth Davis, who was appointed by Starr to lead the planning process, said in an online video address to the Baylor community, "As we have listened to so many of you over these past months, it has become clear to us that we need to develop a plan that is respectful of the wisdom of our community and the depth of expertise across our campus.

"... Just as we have done throughout the development of our plan, we eagerly seek your active participation," she said. "At this time, we are asking for feedback on our draft plan. We hope you will take a little time to consider our draft plan and share with us your thoughts." The video is available at the strategic planning website.

The strategic plan development process began in the fall of 2010 when alumni, faculty, staff, students and friends of Baylor were invited to participate in the process to help shape the University's future. More than 800 alumni and friends attended community town hall meetings in Texas and across the United States, while some 50 campus groups submitted their ideas. In addition, nearly 300 individuals participated using the input form available on the strategic planning website. In total, thousands of members of the Baylor family have participated in the strategic planning process.

When the community input portion of Baylor's strategic planning process ended in April 2011, a Strategic Themes Committee, consisting of 23 Baylor faculty, staff and students, and led by Mitchell J. Neubert, Ph.D., Chavanne Chair of Christian Ethics in Business and associate professor of management in the Hankamer School of Business, worked diligently to code, analyze and synthesize the information.

Starr and the university's Executive Council incorporated that input into a draft of the strategic plan integrating the university's mission, foundational assumptions, core convictions and unifying academic themes. The report was approved by University regents at their 2011 Homecoming meeting.

The draft plan can be accessed on Baylor's strategic planning website, which includes a range of other helpful and informative resources related to the University's planning efforts.

About Baylor University

Baylor University is a private Christian university and a nationally ranked research institution, classified as such with "high research activity" by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. The university provides a vibrant campus community for approximately 15,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating university in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 80 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 11 nationally recognized academic divisions.

Contact: Frank Raczkiewicz, (254) 710-1964

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