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Faculty town hall meetings will gather feedback for strategic planning process

Feb. 17, 2014, 8:00 AM

The first of three faculty town hall meetings will be held from noon to 1 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 27, in the Student Life Center Board of Trust Room to update and engage Vanderbilt’s faculty on the four foundational areas driving the strategic planning process. Additional meetings are planned for students, staff and alumni in the coming weeks to secure their input for the process.

Introduced by Chancellor Nicholas S. Zeppos at the 2013 Spring Faculty Assembly, Vanderbilt’s strategic planning process has been guided over the past 10 months by nearly 200 faculty members comprising the Executive Committee, four Steering Committees and four Academic Planning Groups. Through a series of meetings and retreats, the committees have deliberated on the following four themes:

  • Defining the 21st-century undergraduate residential experience in a research university setting;
  • Launching new trans-institutional programs that strengthen research and graduate, professional and undergraduate education;
  • Leading the development of new technologies to advance teaching and discovery; and
  • Developing innovative solutions for health care.

Those deliberations have given rise to a series of primary initiatives that will be described in a soon-to-be-released draft Executive Summary. This organic document will offer the first glimpse into what the process has yielded about where Vanderbilt needs to go in the next 10 years.

“The town hall meetings are an important step in this process. We are eager to receive feedback from our colleagues and to hear how they envision these strategic initiatives at work in their specific areas,” Executive Committee co-chair Susan Wente explained.

Faculty Town Hall Meetings

Student Life Center Board of Trust Room

· Thursday, Feb. 27, Noon – 1 p.m.
· Tuesday, Mar. 11, 4 – 5 p.m.
· Monday, Mar. 24, Noon – 1 p.m.

Additional faculty town hall meetings will be held at the Student Life Center Board of Trust Room on Tuesday, March 11, from 4 to 5 p.m. and on Monday, March 24, from noon to 1 p.m.

“After months of deep thinking and reflection on the vision of Vanderbilt’s future in the hundreds of meetings that have led us to this point, we are eager to share the ideas that emerged from this bottom-up process and now look forward to the second half of the strategic planning process,” Executive Committee co-chair John Geer said.

The Alumni Association Board will be apprised of progress on the plan in mid-March, and a meeting is scheduled with the Student Leader Summit later in the month.  Chancellor Zeppos met with student leaders to discuss the strategic planning efforts earlier in the semester. Additional meetings with other student groups and with staff also are planned.

The Vanderbilt University Board of Trust participated in sessions focused on the undergraduate residential experience during their November 2013 meetings, and on trans-institutional programs during the early February 2014 meetings. During the April Board of Trust meetings, additional aspects of the strategic plan will be considered.

A draft of the strategic plan will be presented to the chancellor at the end of the 2013-14 academic year, and then to the Board of Trust for its vote of approval.

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