March 5, 2012
Letter from the Provost: K-State 2025 university initiatives
“Are we really going to do what’s in the 2025 plan or are the activities just suggestions from the K-State 2025 theme committees?” This question was raised during a recent planning session – one of many occurring across campus now that college and major unit planning is in full swing. The K-State 2025 visionary plan is the university’s strategic plan, owned by all of us. While many are aligning their own planning with our K-State 2025 vision and goals, many have also been helping us address activities in the plan as university initiatives. President Schulz and I announced these efforts at our rollout meetings last fall. Thanks to hard work and collaborative efforts, we are already moving forward to advance the plan.
What the question does tell me is we need to improve our communications about that progress. In my January letter I talked about several K-State 2025 efforts – the recruitment and hiring assessment and the Campus Master Plan update. Many faculty and staff have been participating in the second phase of space planning meetings with our consultants this past week and it is exciting to see this important foundational work under way. Since my last letter we have begun several additional efforts that are part of the K-State 2025 plan.
Undergraduate Research. K-State 2025 calls for increased participation by undergraduate students in expanded opportunities for meaningful research. Next week I will be charging the Undergraduate Research Task Force to address the undergraduate research activities and outcomes outlined in the K-State 2025 plan. This campuswide task force, chaired by Peter Dorhout, will develop an action plan to encourage, increase and measure undergraduate participation in research, scholarly and creative activities, and discovery at Kansas State University.
Undergraduate Studies. We have also begun recruiting for the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Studies. This new position, a direct result of the 2025 plan, was created to provide strategic leadership to advance our university goals for an outstanding undergraduate educational experience, including those related to undergraduate research. You can see a full description of the position here.
Internationalization. The critical importance of internationalization to the future of our students, our university and our state was recognized by its inclusion as a “common element” underlying K-State 2025. Later this month I will charge a K-State 2025 Internationalization Planning Committee to recommend a strategic action plan for internationalization aligned with our university vision and goals. Work will take place this spring, and the resulting plan will be broadly shared for feedback and completed in the early fall. This campuswide committee will be co-chaired by Tim DeNoble and Steven Graham.
K-State Olathe. As our newest campus, K-State Olathe will play an important role in our efforts to become a top 50 public research university by 2025. As we engage in college-level planning, we are convening the K-State Olathe Planning Committee to propose specific directions, goals and outcomes for K-State Olathe. The resulting plan will be used to determine priorities and assist us as we work together to ensure the Olathe campus continues to evolve as a critical component of Kansas State University. Dan Richardson and Royce Ann Collins will serve as co-chairs for this universitywide committee. The initial plan will be completed this semester and submitted at the end of May with the College/Major Unit action and alignment plans.
I want to thank the 80 faculty, staff, administrators and students who have agreed to invest their time and energy in these new efforts, as well as Jan Middendorf and the Office of Educational Innovation and Evaluation — or OEIE — team who will be facilitating the Internationalization and K-State Olathe Planning Committees.
To learn more about these initiatives and what’s new for K-State 2025, I invite you to visit the revised K-State 2025 website. In addition to links to university initiatives, information regarding college and major unit planning and updated Frequently Asked Questions are now available. We will continue to develop new communication strategies to let people know what we are doing as a university moving toward becoming a top 50 public research university.
Thanks for all you do!