Strategic Planning Phases

Phase I – Project Organization (August)

Project organization has been successfully completed. The Strategic Planning Committee gathered for an intense one-day strategic planning orientation in early August 2014 facilitated by Gordon Maner from the Carl Vinson Institute of Government located at the University of Georgia. In addition to the orientation, the Strategic Planning Committee had an opportunity to engage in preliminary conversation related to the current institutional mission and vision statements, as well as discussion of current and emerging trends that will impact the College over the next several years.

“As the College moves forward with strategic planning for the future, we seek to engage our students, alumni, faculty, staff, community and regional stakeholders in the planning and input process,” stated Elizabeth Weatherly. “We are not only looking forward to enthusiastic participation, we are counting on it!”

Phase II – Data Gathering and Engagement (August-September)

Phase II was completed in late September 2014 and included an environmental scan and SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) analysis, as well as holding a series of focus groups with a wide range of internal and external stakeholders, including alumni, community and K-16 constituents.

Phase III – Making Sense of Issues (October)

A day-long planning session was held in early October 2014 on the Brunswick campus at which time the results from the environmental scan were reviewed and discussed under the guidance and facilitation of Gordon Maner.

As the conversations moved from institutional strengths and weaknesses and potential external threats and opportunities (SWOT) to distilling the information gathered by SWOT review teams and various focus groups, five strategic themes emerged: Academic Excellence, Community Engagement & Partnerships, Institutional Distinction, Organizational Development & Sustainability, and Student Enrichment.

The Steering Committee met in late October and formed five strategic theme work groups – composed of strategic planning committee members, other faculty, administrators, staff, students, and community members – to flesh out each of the themes and develop goals, objectives and prioritized strategies.

Phase IV – Converting Strategic Themes into Action Planning (November-February)

The primary task for each strategic theme work group was to work on developing specific goals and objectives related to its appointed strategic theme.

Each work group engaged the College community broadly during their deliberations and referenced the 2012-15 institutional strategic plan to determine any overlap or need to synthesize information. In addition, the USG Strategic Plan and College’s Complete College Georgia campus plan were aligned accordingly with emerging institutional strategic goals and objectives.

As the work groups commenced their activities, the Office of Institutional Effectiveness provided support and resources to help facilitate the operational/action planning.

Phase V – Crafting Action Strategies (February-March)

After the five strategic theme work groups completed their respective work on crafting a strategic goal(s) and creating a series of objectives aligned with that particular goal, the next task was to develop an initial set of strategies for realizing the objectives identified in the previous planning phase. Strategies were expanded based on School, department and unit assessment planning alignment with specific strategic goals and objectives.

Phase VI – Reviewing and Refining the Plan (April-May)

Once suggested strategies were identified, Phase VI involved obtaining input on the proposed goals, objectives and strategies through a series of open campus forums. Tangentially, proposed recommendations regarding changes to the current institutional mission and vision statements were shared for review and feedback.

Phase VII – Approval and Promotion (June-July)

After final strategic plan and institutional mission/vision modifications were completed, Phase VII involved formal presentation of the completed plan to the President’s Cabinet, Faculty Senate, Staff Assembly, and Student Government Association for endorsement and subsequent action, including approval by the USG. After approval was provided by the USG, a communications plan was unveiled to market Coastal Vision 2021 on the Brunswick and Kingsland campuses.

Phase VIII – Implementation of the Plan (August-September)

Phase VIII, the final step, began in early September 2015 with the formal implementation of Coastal Vision 2021. And, as an extension to the new plan, each School, department and administrative unit began developing its own plan during the 2015-16 academic year, outlining how its School/department/unit goals and outcomes fit with the broader institutional goals and objectives. A review is scheduled for each fall to assess progress and make needed modifications.


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