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Friday, October 21, 2016

System-Wide Strategic Planning Process

October 21, 2016

Dear Colleagues and Students at the University of Minnesota Duluth:

As you may know, President Kaler has asked us to initiate conversations with students, faculty,staff, and leaders from across the system to help us recognize our commonalities and ourunique strengths. We want to find ways to strengthen a system mindset to enrich what theUniversity of Minnesota offers to the State of Minnesota, to our region, and to the world. Ourgoal is to create a document that the Board of Regents and leaders across the system can useto guide the University into the future. As faculty, staff, and students at the University ofMinnesota, your participation in this work is crucial.

How can you be involved?

Throughout this System-Wide Strategic Planning process, we will focus on the following:

●     What are our collective strengths and commitments as a University system?
●     What are the unique strengths of individual campuses?
●     How can we create a system mindset based on a sense of collective abundance?
●     How can we maximize the accessibility of our collective andunique strengths to the State?
●     What strategic intentions should guide both short- and long-term planning,decision making and resource allocation?

Please reflect on these questions, talk with your colleagues, and review relevant planningdocuments so that you can tell us about the exceptional aspects of your campus, as well ashow your campus contributes to and is strengthened by the system. 

We are seeking informationabout what already exists as well as what could exist in an ideal future.
Please attend the upcoming forums held at your campus on October 26. We have worked withChancellor Black to organize forums so that all campus constituents have an opportunity toengage in this process.
1:15-2:00 p.m. Student Association/Congress and Multicultural Student Leaders - Kirby Ballroom
2:00- 3:00 p.m. Staff Assembly - Kirby Ballroom
3:00-4:00 p.m. Faculty Assembly - Kirby Ballroom

If you are not able to attend the forums, we will soon provide you with information on how toprovide input electronically throughout this process. 

Additionally, in the spring, we will return toDuluth to talk with you about emerging ideas so that you have an opportunity to focus and refinethose ideas.

Thank you for your participation in this important effort to create a robust future for the Universityof Minnesota. We look forward to interacting with and learning from you.

Chancellor Stephen Lehmkuhle, University of Minnesota Rochester ViceProvost Rebecca Ropers-Huilman, Faculty and Academic Affairs

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Update on budget, campus climate and homecoming

Dear colleagues,

We are well into the fall semester and I have selected a few updates to share with you today. But first, I am excited to let you know that the University of Minnesota Board of Regents will be holding their regular March meeting at UMD March 23-24, 2017.  This will be an excellent opportunity to showcase our campus and have our campus community engage with the regents.  More information on that to come, but please mark those dates on your calendar.  

On a similar note, President Kaler was on campus last week and had a successful visit. While here he met with student association, faculty council, staff council, and an open campus reception. He also was able to see the Cina Hall renovation, learn about our legislative asset preservation request for the Sports and Health Center, and get a preview of the Shakespeare's First Folio exhibit. Thank you to those who participated.

We continue to make progress toward our budget resolution plan . Here is a brief update on the six strategies involved.

  1. Required Savings Budget Process
    1. Each campus unit (Chancellor, Academic Affairs, Student Life, Finance & Operations) has identified the required 1% budget savings for Fiscal Year 2017. Those reductions have been made for this fiscal year and total $1.175 million.
  2. Academic Administrative Restructuring
    1. This discussion is pending further results of the academic program optimization process. The staff task force continues to explore where we might find efficiencies in shared services and common practices within our operational and administrative functions.
  3. Academic Program and Course Offering Optimization
    1. The college deans have been working closely with Executive Vice Chancellor Fernando Delgado to identify savings. Read his latest  update message for more information. We expect the budget reduction process to wrap up towards the end of October and will share further information when ready. The conversation about program array will continue throughout this year and the next.
  4. Targeted Reductions, Tuition and Revenue Generation
    1. Work is underway on additional reductions that will achieve the $300,000 target over the next several years. Information about those reductions will be shared when they are finalized in the near future.
  5. Enrollment Growth and Reinvestment
    1. The incredible work of our admissions team and their faculty and staff partners across campus these last few years has resulted in positive results this fall. Thank you! We must all continue to support recruitment efforts and will continue to invest in these areas.
    2. Total fall 2016 campus headcount enrollment at all student levels equals 11,018, and is up 1.4% compared to fall 2015.
      1. Undergraduate  enrollment increased to 9,051, up 122 students from fall 2015.  
      2. Graduate enrollment remained steady with a total headcount of 664, an increase of 12 students.
    3. The freshman class increased by 7%, with a total enrollment of 2,138 surpassing the fall 2016 goal of 2,100 freshmen.  New transfer student enrollment also increased by 5.5% this fall.
    4. The percentage of students of color in the freshman class increased to 13.8%, which is up from 12.6% in fall 2015.
  6. Deficit Reduction and Investment Fund Transfer (DRIFT)
    1. Additional reductions of $3.5 million have also occurred this fiscal year in each campus unit (Chancellor, Academic Affairs, Student Life, Finance & Operations).  These reductions have reduced our accumulating cash balance deficit, and over time, this strategy will eliminate the balance cash deficit.

Last month our campus heard the results of our campus climate survey . Since then, the campus climate working group has conducted several listening sessions to help inform the development of action plans.  In addition, Vice Chancellor Lisa Erwin provided an update to campus about resources for  reporting sexual assault and will be providing another update shortly, including the updated  sexual assault website.  

The change unit teams have been and will continue to be engaged to help us implement other strategies. Ideas may also be submitted through the  Campus Climate Survey website.  I thank you for your participation in working together to make UMD a more welcoming and inclusive campus community.

This week, we will join together as a campus community at exciting events like the corn roast, the ASME Cardboard Boat Races, and the Brill Cup Faculty-Staff Flag Football Tournament. On Saturday, we invite all of Bulldog Country to campus for a fun-filled day of activities, beginning with the parade at 10 a.m. and continuing through the family carnival, the tailgate party, the football game, and the volleyball game.

The week will conclude in Canal Park with the men's hockey game at Amsoil. Homecoming is an important tradition that brings us all together to celebrate the history of UMD and our shared experiences here. I wish students, faculty, and staff a safe and enjoyable Homecoming 2016. Visit  d.umn.edu/homecoming for a full list of events.

Have a great week.  Go Dogs!

Lendley Black, Chancellor