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Spelman College Strategic Planning

Inventing the Future @ Spelman

Planning Approach

Grounded in Spelman’s compelling value propositions — top-ranked historically Black college, leader in the education and empowerment of women of African descent, highly rated liberal arts institution, and STEM powerhouse — the College initially identified eight strategic areas that might continue to propel Spelman’s ascent.

Those eight areas have been refined and incorporated into the following four strategic themes.
Please view the details of each area. We encourage you to share your thoughts and feedback with a member of the President's senior team or by email at planning@spelman.edu.  We also welcome your ideas for strategic initiatives, which can be submitted online by completing this worksheet.

Theme committees will recommend a prioritized set of initiatives to include in the final, chosen from those suggested by the Spelman Community; and each initiative will have corresponding metrics.

Strategic Themes

Theme 1 – Heighten Intellectual Excellence

How do living, learning, and leadership opportunities strengthen Spelman's intellectual excellence? How does Spelman gain recognition and visibility for existing pedagogical innovation?

Brainstorm initiatives to strengthen Spelman's intellectual and academic excellence.

Theme 2 – Leverage Spelman's Impact

What strategic partnerships, communications strategies, or funding initiatives might heighten Spelman's impact?

Brainstorm initiatives to heighten Spelman's impact.

Theme 3 – Optimize Organizational Productivity

How can Spelman foster a collaborative, results-oriented environment that optimizes the use of technology and provides optimal talent development opportunities for everyone who works here?

Brainstorm initiatives to enhance collaboration among campus divisions and provide talent development opportunities.

Theme 4 – Broaden Student-Centered Innovation

How might Spelman encourage student-centered innovation including developing new student pipelines, streamlining student processes, focusing on increasing student graduation rates, and investing in high impact practices?

Brainstorm initiatives that keep Spelman at the forefront of student-centered innovation.

The Plan

The plan covers a five-year period beginning with fiscal year 2017-18, and will be designed to follow seamlessly the current plan. Final strategic priorities adopted in the plan will be informed by an assessment of progress made, during the existing plan period, towards academic and operational excellence at Spelman, an assessment of remaining gaps, and an invitation to stakeholders to imagine new directions and opportunities for the College.

The plan will establish broad goals and specific metrics for the College, as we take steps to secure Spelman’s future in a shifting landscape that questions the relevance of the liberal arts, Historically Black Colleges and Universities, and women’s colleges. It will seek to make explicit our assumptions about the future environment in which the College will operate, focus on a select number of major areas, and establish clear outcomes that signal the accomplishment of our goals.

Ideally, the plan will reflect Spelman’s particular objectives, strengths and weaknesses, avoiding as much as possible generalities that might apply equally well to our peers. The plan will leverage factors such as the strength of our faculty and academic programs in key areas, opportunities for growth, the revitalization efforts planned for our neighborhood, Southern Association of Colleges and Schools review, and existing and potential ties to other institutions (i.e. educational, local, national and global). While encouraging innovation in strategic areas, the plan will be based on a realistic assessment of the College’s most promising opportunities, so that we can focus our resources on priorities that are both important and feasible.

The plan will outline strategies that are based on what we know today, but the framework should allow us to revise these strategies should the future evolve differently from what we now envision.

Your Voice Was Heard


Learn more at spelman.edu/strategicplan