Success Agenda

In an effort to increase the overall educational attainment of Montanans and provide an efficient and effective system of higher education, the Board of Regents adopted a Success Agenda to augment the Strategic Plan and help guide the Montana University System.

1. Resident Student Access:

  • Develop a unified approach to resident student recruitment, admissions, and financial aid, with the goal of increasing the percentage of MT high school graduates attending the MUS.
  • Expand awareness and further remove barriers through the continuous improvement of the College & Career Readiness portal and expanded use of the Central Application.
  • Improve the utilization of data resources to increase opportunities for communication, recruitment, and admittance of resident students. 
  • Utilize the portal as an avenue to increase financial aid awareness (e.g. FAFSA completion, state funded financial, etc.).

2.  Dual Enrollment:

  • Increase awareness, capacity, and opportunities for dual enrollment in Montana.
  • Continue the 1-2-Free program (first 6 credits for free).
  • Work to centralize dual enrollment application and registration processes.
  • Focus on maximizing dual enrollment course quality, alignment of dual enrollment courses with industry and university credentials/pathways, and conversion of dual enrollment students to full-time enrollment at MUS institutions.

3.  Retention:

  • Improve retention and completion rates of students by promoting and employing systemwide strategies. 
  • Expand and evaluate the Montana 10 student success intervention to improve retention, completion and time-to-degree among low income resident students.
  • Increase clarity and impact of incentives for campuses to meet and exceed retention targets and to narrow equity gaps in retention.
  • Work to build MUS capacity to address student mental health and wellness supports that are prerequisites for retention and completion.

4.  Career & Technical Education:

  • Expand efforts to effectively deliver career and technical education (CTE) for MUS students.
  • Establish and evaluate new accelerated degree pathways in in-demand fields (“Sprint Degrees”) in partnership with industry.
  • Engage K-12 partners to more effectively promote CTE opportunities through school counseling and advising strategies.
  • Improve on-ramps to CTE through dual enrollment, enhanced industry collaboration, and work-based learning opportunities.
  • Expand access to accelerated or stackable CTE credential pathways.

5.  Research:

  • Reinvigorate state-support for MT focused research and development.
  • Identify nascent research strengths for potential system, state, or federal investment.
  • Improve technology transfer supports and pathways that help innovations move from lab to market.
  • Coordinate across state government and the private sector to build an agenda for technology-led economic development in Montana.

6.  Seamless Education:

  • Develop tools and resources that broaden and streamline access to the academic offerings of the MUS.
  • Implement key technology upgrades that improve students access and facilitate collaboration, including a single, high-quality learning management system and a shared catalog and registration tool for online coursework.
  • Broaden use of distance and hybrid learning, particularly for collaborative approaches that expand student access to in-demand programs.
  • Continuously evaluate the university system’s program mix, with the aim of reducing unnecessary duplication of academic offerings and addressing student demand through collaboration where possible.

7.  Performance-Based Funding:  

  • Continue utilizing a performance funding model that contributes to the allocation of state funds.
  • Analyze longitudinal student success results from under-represented student groups by campus.
  • Utilize metric weights to increase emphasis on Regents’ priorities.

8.  Enterprise Risk Management (ERM):

  • Provide leadership and coordination in the identification, management, and monitoring of systemwide risk/opportunities to advance the MUS mission. 
  • Continue to convene the Risk and Compliance Leadership Council and coordinate with campus risk officers.
  • Incentivize campuses to identify shared affiliation and systemwide services through ERM funding opportunities.  
  • Continue to encourage systemwide participation in insurance discount programs offered by the Risk Management and Tort Defense Division.

9.  Communication & Advocacy:

  • Build on current communication and marketing efforts to increase support for higher education.
  • Effectively communicate the University System’s “product” to stakeholders. 
  • Devise methods to succinctly articulate the “value proposition” of attaining post-secondary degrees and certificates.

Faculty and Staff Support:  

Provide compensation and professional development adequate for recruiting and retaining faculty and staff.