June 20, 2014: Letter to Saint Mary's Community

Subject: Strategic Planning Update

Dear Saint Mary’s community,

I am pleased to provide an update on the excellent progress the campus is making toward our next strategic plan.

The Initiative Task Forces did a remarkable job of distilling a lot of information from a wide variety of sources during their work over the past two months. They were rigorous in their assessment of opportunities and challenges. During their work, they examined previous plans and recent survey data, which provided a snapshot of community views on key aspects of the strategic planning framework, and competitive and market data.  The resulting recommendations were thoughtful, and, in fact, bold, aimed at strongly positioning the College for the future.

The Steering Committee reviewed their reports and began to prioritize the initiatives with an eye toward early successes and our most significant opportunities, most urgent needs and greatest risks over the next two and five years. They also noted topics or issues that needed to be addressed or developed more fully in the plan.

The work of these two groups is now being turned over to the Cabinet who, in their executive role, will develop the initial draft of the strategic plan in July to be reviewed by the Steering Committee in early August and shared with the community at the all-staff and all-faculty days in late August. The Cabinet will map the draft plan to a realistic budget and to other institution-wide initiatives already underway (such as the Academic Blueprint and the Campus Master Plan). Once completed, the plan will provide a comprehensive view of our future that aligns with financial and human resources required to ensure its successful implementation.

As the plan is finalized in the fall, input around strategic priorities and opportunities will be solicited from additional key stakeholders, such as the Board of Trustees, Regents and others in the SMC community. My hope is that the plan development ends as it started — inclusive and transparent.

I would like to express my gratitude to all the individuals across our community who have contributed their time and talents to this process thus far. I am excited about the future we are mapping together.

Sincerely,
James A. Donahue
President

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Moraga, CA 94575
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