Proposal for MUS Planning

 

Board of Regents Meeting

September 22-24, 2004

 

I believe it is imperative that the MUS have a coherent vision of what we wish to look like in three to five years, to demonstrate our ultimate objectives to the Legislature and other sponsors.

 

In October of 2001, the Board of Regents approved a strategic plan that included a mission statement, a vision statement, and five goals. Each goal included a number of subordinate objectives. It is time that we revisit that strategic plan and its effectiveness in providing guidance to our campuses in their planning and decision-making activities.

 

It is important that the Board of Regents be proactive in its leadership role and provide the Montana University System campuses with overarching planning guidelines for their planning efforts. These guidelines will help avoid short-term decisions that could cause us to miss longer-term opportunities. They will also serve to improve coordination within and between our campuses and increase awareness of our interconnectedness.

 

A well developed and articulated strategic plan will raise the public awareness of the critical issues facing higher education in Montana and how we are directing our available resources to most effectively address those issues, in the best interests of our students and the taxpayers of the state.

 

Our MUS planning process should:

 

         Be dynamic enough to allow periodic assessment and evaluation

         Be done in a way that will cause systematic and periodic updating

         Be structured to involve key constituencies and build commitment across those constituencies

         Be well integrated with the planning processes on our campuses

         Be general enough to allow for campus flexibility but specific enough to provide strategic direction for our campuses

         Keep us aware of economic, demographic, social, and political factors that provide us with both challenges and opportunities

         Support our efforts to successfully address the market forces and increasingly strong competition our institutions face

 

Having a strong strategic planning process for the MUS will help us maintain and strengthen our focus on how we can best serve our students and State. It will ensure that we are using our resources wisely and have directed them to our priority needs. A commitment to planning is evidence that we believe that we can shape our own future and will take the necessary actions to do so.

 

Consequently, I propose the Board initiate a Planning Process to describe what we wish the Montana University System to look like in three to five years and provide this plan to the 2005 Legislature.

 

Presented by Regent Roehm