Strategic forum to provide opportunity for student input

Shannon Mccarty

The six strategic planning subcommittees are going to polish Iowa State’s strategic plan, and they want student and faculty input.

The strategic plan is an outline of how the university is going to accomplish its missions and goals. Steve Freeman, university professor of agricultural and biosystems engineering, is the chairman of the Strategic Planning Steering Committee that built the planning subcommittees.

Each subcommittee will focus on a separate aspect of Iowa State: student experience, university research, economic development, university infrastructure and university environment. Each subcommittee is made up of staff, faculty and students.

Freeman said ISU President Steven Leath extended the current plan for one year in order to align the current process with the Board of Regents’ process.

Four open forums will allow students, staff and faculty to provide input throughout the process of working on the strategic plan.

The two forums in the fall will give the subcommittees information that will assist them in creating the first draft. The spring forums will then allow students, staff and faculty to critique the draft.

“This is the opportunity for broad community input,” Freeman said.

Freeman said the committees think they have a good idea of what the issues are but that can’t be guaranteed until the open forums take place.

“We want [the forum] to be an open dialogue,” Freeman said.

Freeman said he expects the growing pains from the higher enrollment to be students’ main concerns.

“I think from the student perspective, it is [the biggest issue],” Freeman said.

If students feel strongly about something, Freeman said he expects them to express their feelings during the forum and provide suggestions for a solution.

The chairman of the committee said there will be no radical change, but the committee will make goals more detailed and measurable and continue to build on Iowa State’s success.

“The message I want to send to the students and faculty is this is part of a continuous improvement process,” Freeman said.

The first open forum for the fall will take place at noon Wednesday in the Oak Room of the Memorial Union. The other fall forum will take place at 4:30 p.m. Dec. 1 in the Oak Room of the Memorial Union.