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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 has identified eight strategic areas that might continue to propel Spelman’s ascent.

The plan covers a five-year period beginning January 1, 2017, and will be designed to follow seamlessly the current plan that expires in 2017. 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 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 limitations, 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.