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Loyola unveils strategic plan for the university

June 5, 2009

Where are we now? Where do we want to go? How will we get there? These questions have been raised by Loyola University New Orleans administrators, faculty, staff and students, and the answers have resulted in an ambitious strategic plan for the university called Loyola 2012.

The University Planning Team, which includes a cross section of the university community, was tasked with the creation of a strategic plan a year ago. Their work, along with that of the Standing Council for Academic Planning and the University Budget Committee, came to fruition last month when the plan was presented to the Loyola University Board of Trustees for approval.

On May 15, trustees unanimously approved the plan that strives to enhance the university’s Jesuit values, improve student retention, and enhance its reputation and stature. Portions of the plan will be implemented this fall, and it includes 3- and 6-year goals to support those three overarching objectives.

The strategic plan coincides with the university’s centennial anniversary in 2012.

According to Edward J. Kvet, Loyola’s provost and vice president for academic affairs, the university embarked on developing a new comprehensive strategic plan to meet Loyola’s immediate needs, to fulfill the mission of the university, and to position it for long-term viability.

“As we approach our centennial anniversary, it is natural and fitting that we look back on our accomplishments. However, while Loyola University has achieved great things these past 100 years, this strategic plan will ensure that we continue to expand on our successes and shape our students in an atmosphere of excellence and commitment to Jesuit values.”

To enhance the university’s Jesuit values, the plan calls for the establishment of a volunteer and public service center; orientation and formation programs on Jesuit values across the university; support for faculty to include the university’s Jesuit/Catholic mission in academic programming; and the development of collaborative programs and initiatives between Loyola and other Jesuit schools.

The strategy to improve student retention includes plans to develop and implement a fully integrated first-year experience program; enhance the university’s athletic program with more intercollegiate sports offerings; introduce a student-parent engagement and communication program; establish the Ignatius Loyola Institute for Values Education (iLive) to prepare students for civic-minded lives of purpose; and create an academic success center for students.

The most ambitious portion of the plan involves the enhancement of Loyola’s reputation and stature as reflected in the rankings of U.S. News and World Report. This strategy will be implemented through an enhanced common curriculum; more funding and support of faculty-student undergraduate research; enhanced academic programs; exploration of accreditation/certification for all programs; internationalization of the university; and an enhanced external reputation through higher rankings and more alumni giving.

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