Thursday, January 22, 2015

14 universities. Infinite opportunities.

What exactly does that mean?

It means that when students are part of one of our 14 universities, they have access to a wide range of enriching opportunities—academically, socially, and professionally.

We recently developed our first “14 universities. Infinite opportunities.” video, which highlights the experiences of some students and alumni from our universities. This will be the first in a series of short videos that show why our universities, students, faculty and alumni have, and will continue to have, a powerful impact on the Commonwealth. 

Watch the video now!

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Advancing the State System in 2015

While it’s only a few days into 2015, I already can feel the excitement and optimism all across the State System—from the Board of Governors to Trustees and university leaders to faculty, staff, and students—as we look forward to the year ahead. I want to take a moment at the start of this new year to outline a number of important initiatives—all of which will continue our momentum toward becoming the most student-centered, flexible, and collaborative university system in America.

Looking at some of those key initiatives, it’s easy to see it’s going to be a very busy year:

Advocate for investment 
Our universities are engines of economic growth for the communities they serve and the Commonwealth as a whole. We will continue engaging with elected leaders, business leaders, and community leaders to enhance support for and investment in the State System’s 14 universities by identifying new revenue streams and advocating for sound public policy.

Promote academic program alignment 
The world is changing, and our universities are doing their part to adapt and evolve to ensure relevance well into the future. With more than 80 percent of State System alumni remaining in Pennsylvania after graduation to live and work, our universities are working to align their academic program offerings to reflect the changing demands of students and the needs of the Commonwealth.

Advance key strategic initiatives designed to meet the goals of the 2020 State System Strategic Plan
By making advances in areas such as closing the gap between degree production and workforce demands; expanding international education; enhancing online learning opportunities; and enhancing the general education program, we will create even greater learning and career development opportunities for our students as laid out in the System’s strategic plan.

Enhance accountability, planning, and transparency
We are introducing an accountability framework built on the State System’s Strategic Plan. This will lead to individual university action plans that will outline the future path of each institution and an annual accountability report that will capture the progress of all institutions on key metrics in an easy-to-use format.

Promote strategies to improve university financial stability
We will further advance strategies to increase cost savings, and improve the efficiency of shared services to help ensure the high-quality, high-value education our students expect and deserve.

As with any journey, we will face ups and downs along the way; but, if we continue to keep the students at our 14 universities our top priority, we will accomplish these things, and more.