A university’s strategic plan serves as a road map for the future, identifying opportunities for success, as well as areas for growth that can be met with strategic planning and implementation of key initiatives and goals.
Strategic plans also create efficiencies that allow universities to maximize resources and create a culture of success. The other outcome of a strategic plan is that universities are able to realign in areas where success was not achieved and adjust expectations or take new paths to achieve the initial objective.
IMPACT 2018 has been the guiding vision for South Dakota State University the past five years. During that time, the university has annually reviewed its progress toward the plan’s goals. We have learned a great deal about our successes, where and how to create efficiencies, as well as where we fell short of our goals.
More importantly, the plan served as a foundation for the next five years and our new strategic plan, Imagine 2023: Aspire. Discover. Achieve. Impact 2018 helped to align the goals and discover new paths that will make our university even more successful in the next five years.
Land-grant universities are rooted in their mission of providing broad access to higher education and engaging with the people and communities throughout South Dakota and the region in ways that transform the world. We are committed to maintaining success for our students and faculty, driving research and scholarly activity and being good stewards of public resources.
We will continue to welcome a diverse student body that represents every state in the nation and more than 90 countries around the world. Our faculty is equally diverse, coming to us from all corners of the United States and from countries all over the world. It is this type of diversity—racially, ethnically and culturally—that will serve as an important core value in our strategic plan.
Higher education in the United States and in South Dakota continues to provide individuals great value and support communities, businesses, industry and the overall global economy. However, the challenges of providing access to the benefits of higher education remain as compelling today as they were in 1862 when the land-grant system was founded. It remains the responsibility of everyone at SDSU to strive for excellence, create opportunities and make South Dakota an exciting, growing and dynamic part of our nation and the world.
Barry H. Dunn
President, South Dakota State University