Executive Summary – Student Affairs Division
As the University begins its journey to a being ranked as one of the “top” five national ranking small liberal arts universities in the nation, the Division of Student Affairs stands ready to support this effort by way of a dynamic strategic plan that articulates a clear vision for how it’s units and their operations will support UIS’s larger vision. The strategic plan developed by the UIS Division of Student Affairs is a living document that matches resources with vision and actions that ensures the goal of service through excellence is achieved.
As units within the Division of Student Affairs prepared respective strategic planning documents that would be consistent with the mission to move forward to excellence, it was essential that strategic foundation centered on the extraordinary changes facing higher education, the opportunities presented by an expanding and changing student body, advancements being made in student recruitment and retention, and overall delivery of customer-centered student services. Hence, the overall strategic planning framework described in this document reflects the six pillars of excellence that the Division strives to achieve; excellence in service, student development, building community, diversity, organizational and professional development, and recruitment and retention. These pillars are seen as the foundation for how to create a brilliant future for the University of Illinois at Springfield through the Division of Student Affairs.
In order to accomplish this aggressive transformation the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs requested that each department and respective staffing team within the Division structure its strategic plans to align with the six pillars (goals) of excellence, which would assure services and outcomes compliment the new direction for the Division of Student Affairs at UIS. To this end, each unit shaped their strategic plans around how it defines each pillar of excellence; the service and learning outcomes that accompany each pillar of excellence; the actions steps necessary to accomplish each service/learning outcome; and the assessment plan that benchmarks each outcome. The preceding document chronicles the collective strategic planning process for each of the twenty units within the Division of Student Affairs and their comprehensive approach to meeting the Division’s goals outlined by the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs. As stated at the onset of this document, the Division of Student Affairs Strategic Plan is a living and dynamic document, and it is anticipated that this framework will continue to be refined in the coming months to produce a final, cohesive document by September 1, 2006.
Overall, the most important contribution the Division of Student Affairs offers to the University of Illinois at Springfield is the leadership to meet the opportunities and challenges in the next five years as the pathway to a brilliant future for UIS unfolds. This strategic plan is written and designed to advance the institution as whole, with the goal of better positioning UIS to achieve ranking status as one of the “top five” nationally recognized small public liberal arts university. At the same time, this plan outlines the significant operational issues and resources necessary to meet functional demands for the Division of Students Affairs, which will result in achievement of its mission to, “Developing Tomorrow’s Leaders and Preparing Today’s Enlightened and Engaged Citizens” and “Creating a Brilliant Future” for the University of Illinois at Springfield.
Student Affairs strives to attract, to enroll, to educate, to serve students, and to produce graduates who are fully prepared to be outstanding contributors to and enlightened citizens within their communities and the larger global society.
The Division of Student Affairs is committed to inspiring, educating, and supporting students in their efforts to excel personally and academically, demonstrating high levels of integrity, and exhibiting a strong commitment to building a just and equitable world for all people. We support the educational mission of University of Illinois at Springfield (UIS) through supporting faculty and staff in their endeavors to produce graduates that write, speak, think critically, and to become skilled and knowledgeable in their academic discipline. We assist our students in developing a healthy sense of identity as individuals and as members of a community, placing high value on the ability to thrive both independently and interdependently. At UIS, we place particular emphasis on appreciation of diverse perspectives, ethical leadership, and a commitment to life long skills of civic engagement and social justice. Our core philosophy that drives and empowers our staff to service is the intent to provide the best possible programs and services to students that enable them to accomplish their dreams and realize success in all areas of life. This philosophical theme is encompassed in our division theme: “Developing Tomorrow’s Leaders and Preparing Today’s Enlightened and Engaged Citizens”.
- Excellence in Service
Holding our programs and staff to excellence in all that we do, Student Affairs respectfully supports students, faculty, staff, and parents with professional care. Our programs, services, and facilities assist students in their transition to campus life and help them to navigate and complete the college experience and to derive the greatest value and pleasure from their time at UIS.
- Student Development
Our staff of professionals is committed to the enhancement of student leadership and the cultivation of their civic engagement as citizens. Student Affairs directly supports students’ life long development of personal, academic, and social skills.
- Building Community
Our strong community partnerships and deep involvement actively engages students and faculty in the larger social system and promotes service learning, social justice and civic engagement. We offer a safe, open, welcoming community that nurtures healthy personal development and a sense of belonging to everyone in the campus community.
We work to attract, to hire, and to retain students, faculty, and staff of all backgrounds. Our goal is a rich multicultural environment. Student Affairs emphasizes to its students and staff a diverse, tolerant campus community.
- Organizational and Professional Development
The Student Affairs staff exhibits the values we hope students will exhibit. Our staff learns constantly as we serve and works collaboratively with students and colleagues to achieve a shared vision.
- Recruitment and Retention
Student Affairs holds a deep appreciation for entire journey that students embark upon during their college career. We are committed to ensuring that staff and resources are aligned appropriately to foster student success at the point of college exploration and recruitment, to the point of college selection and enrollment, and culminating in successful graduation and post graduation planning.