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President Huddleston Announces Strategic Planning Committee

October 15, 2008

Dear Colleagues,

As I stated in my installation address, we are embarking upon the development of a comprehensive, campus-wide strategic plan for the University. The first meeting of the 30-member steering committee was held last week, under the facilitation of Bob Zemsky, chair of The Learning Alliance and one of the co-authors of Remaking the American University: Market-Smart and Mission-Centered.  Bill Massy, his co-author and consulting partner, is also working with us on this highly inclusive, bottom-up process as we chart the strategic course for UNH over the next five to ten years.  

The steering committee is comprised of representatives from across the University and our greater community:  faculty, students, staff, deans, a Durham town council member, a member of the USNH board of trustees, a UNH Manchester business advisory partner, and Alumni and Foundation board directors are all members. You will find a complete listing of the steering committee members with their titles at  http://www.unh.edu/strategicplanning. This link will be updated as the strategic planning process unfolds over the course of the academic year.
The result of this process will be the first overarching strategic road map the University of New Hampshire has ever had.  This will enable us to chart our course guided by four or five major initiatives describing where we want to go and how we plan to get there. Our aim is to forge a common vision, strategy, commitment, and enthusiasm for moving our University forward.  

The steering committee will meet throughout the fall semester, and a larger group of 120 colleagues from across campus will meet in roundtable groups in late November to discuss the general themes which will have emerged by then.  Out of the roundtable discussions will emerge several thematically based working groups which will be charged with framing more specific proposals for consideration by the whole campus community in a series of public, open forums in the spring.

As I also mentioned in my speech, I have formed several commissions and groups to examine issues central to our University. The Blue Ribbon Panel on Research, co-chaired by Dr. Jan Nisbet and Dr. Amitava Bhattacharjee, will be releasing their findings shortly; the President’s Panel on Intercollegiate Athletics, chaired by David Roselle, president emeritus of the University of Delaware, is about to meet for the first time; and Healthy UNH, co-chaired by CHHS Dean Barbara Arrington and VP for Finance and Administration Dick Cannon, will undertake a broad examination of wellness and healthcare issues so important to all of us at UNH.  The recommendations from each of these groups will be folded into the strategic planning process, as appropriate.
This is an exciting and important process and it will demand a great deal of time and commitment.  I am very grateful for the hard work and dedication that members of the UNH community are willing to give to this critical process.  Thanks to all of you in advance.

I look forward to seeing the fruits of our collective labor.

Best regards,

Mark W. Huddleston

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