The Hampshire College Board of Trustees has asked me to proceed with the College's strategic planning initiative. I am commissioning a new Strategic Planning Committee (SPC). This committee will work with consultant and Hampshire alum Jay Vogt to implement an inclusive strategic planning process that will include: confirming Hampshire's mission and values and articulating them in a clear and compelling way; convening two campus-wide visioning days, which will engage the entire community in the process; organizing and categorizing the ideas generated from these days; prioritizing the outcomes in line with Hampshire's mission, values, and resources; formulating strategic initiatives and determining which ones can be accomplished in three to five years, which will take longer or require more resources than are available and must be deferred, and which issues are so fundamental or complex that they require a separate study or plan independent of the strategic planning effort. The committee also will distinguish between strategic and operational projects, and communicate the latter to the senior staff for its consideration and/or action.
The SPC will be advisory to the acting President, who will ultimately present the completed plan to the board for its final approval. The plan will define our priorities for the next several years. We anticipate that implementation of strategic initiatives will begin immediately after this and will be led by the new president.
Trustees are selected by the chair of the board of trustees; faculty members were chosen by VPAA Alan Goodman and myself from a pool nominated by the school deans; staff and student representatives will be chosen by me from a pool generated through an election. Each constituency will vote for candidates who emerge through nominations, including self-nominations. I will select from among those with the most votes.
Duration of Service
The plan should be completed by May 1, 2011.
The SPC will meet 2-3 times during the fall semester, including a December 15 day-long (8:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.) training with Jay Vogt and the visioning exercise on February 4-6, after which the committee will meet weekly/biweekly as a full committee or a subcommittee.
Minutes of meetings of the SPC will be produced and available to the Hampshire College community on the intranet.
A plan will be developed by the SPC to implement the actionable projects identified in the strategic plan. These projects will convert the plan's objectives and goals to specific actions which can be integrated into and made part of the work of accomplishing the College's mission and vision. I will select project leaders from among the senior staff and faculty who will develop timelines, cost estimates, major steps, and leading and trailing indicators for each project. The work of the committee will be challenging, and especially intensive in the spring semester. I also believe that this will be a completely engaging and dynamic process, whose outcome will be invaluable in the coming years as we create the future of our vibrant, innovative, and exciting College.
-- Marlene Gerber Fried, interim President of Hampshire College
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