Saturday, April 27, 2013

Strategic Plan is Revealed

The Wichita State University Strategic Plan Draft. 

See the full draft plan at, click on "WSU Strategic Plan Preview" in left navigation area.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Strategic Plan Preview Set for April 25, 2013

Wichita State University’s Strategic Plan will be revealed at a Town Hall meeting, Thursday, April 25, 3:30-5:30 p.m., Hubbard Hall 208, on the Wichita State University campus. The plan preview is the culmination of the Strategic Planning Steering Committee’s work over the past eight months. 

We heard from many people about their hopes and dreams for the future of Wichita State University. We are excited to present a phenomenal integration of what we heard. The plan's implementation will be transformational for Wichita State University. 

At the meeting, we will preview the plan and engage in discussion about the next steps for implementation at the departmental level.

Anyone interested in the future of WSU is welcome. Hope to see you there. 

Friday, March 29, 2013

Steering Committee Retreat – What Happens Now?

The Wichita State University Strategic Planning Steering Committee engaged in an energizing retreat this week. Kevin Bomhoff (Director of Strategic Development, WSU Center for Community Support and Research) and Misty Bruckner (Associate Director, Center for Urban Studies in the Hugo Wall School of Urban and Public Affairs) served as our moderators for the two-day retreat. We found their help to be invaluable. The resources on our campus, such as Misty and Kevin, are amazing. 

The Steering Committee members—composed of campus and community volunteers—dedicated their time, thought, and effort to a successful retreat. We made tremendous progress on draft vision, mission, values, and big audacious goals. We are not ready to release anything publicly, yet. There is still work to be accomplished. Our plan is to introduce a refined draft plan to the WSU campus and larger Wichita communities, later this month. Watch for details of the April 25 town hall rollout meeting.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

What Do We Want To Be?

WSU Strategic Planning
Data Analysis Effort

During our strategic planning listening process, on many occasions we have heard that Wichita State University must not try to be all things to all people. We must decide what we want to be, and then be what we say we are. This seems simple, but it is not.

During a recent campus update, WSU President John Bardo said that we have not engaged in a campus-wide full discussion of expectations with regard to what it means to Wichita State University to be a “research university.” There are many types of research universities, each with different allocations of time and resources.

What does it mean to you for Wichita State University to be a “research university”? What do we at Wichita State University want to be? How do we establish a unique niche? What should that niche be? I would like to hear your thoughts.

By the way, much of what President Bardo discussed during his campus update is linked to what our Steering Committee is hearing in our strategic planning discussions. If you have access to the myWSU website, you can access his update on the home page.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Preparation for the Steering Committee Retreat

The Steering Committee for the WSU Strategic Planning Initiative is preparing for a two-day retreat later this month. Our goal for the retreat is to develop a draft of the strategic plan. Parts of the plan will be taken out in April for our last round of campus and community town hall meetings.

There is a tremendous amount of data for the Steering Committee to consider. If you look at our website, it contains much of these data. If you can imagine reading all of the information, making sense of it, and then developing a vision and big, audacious goals for WSU, that is what the Steering Committee will be doing at the retreat. As you might expect, the Steering Committee is data fatigued at this point. Fortunately, two graduate students are working on projects to help us make sense of the data. 

We hope that everyone who has wanted has taken the opportunity to participate in the data gathering process. If there is anything you would like to tell the Steering Committee before we move into the plan-writing phase of our initiative, there are several ways to contact us. First, provide your thoughts through the “Talk to Us” link on our website. Second, post comments to this blog. Third, e-mail Steering Committee members at the addresses listed on our website. 

Thanks to all who have participated thus far. The process will be a success because of you.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Town Hall Thoughts

This week (Thursday, February 28) we hosted a joint campus and community town hall meeting. We talked about core values and big, bold visions for WSU. Thank you to all the attendees. Your participation helps shape our important work on WSU’s strategic plan.

A big “thank you” to our guest blogger, Charlie Claycomb (WSU Alumnus 1971, 1991), who provides his thoughts about the town hall. 

There was a great turnout for the Strategic Planning meeting this week. There were people from Wichita City Council, WSU, Butler Community College, and the general community from Wichita, Goddard, Haysville, Andover, El Dorado, and Kansas City to name a few. There was much discussion about what values are important for our university and its strategic plan.
The general theme seemed to be that students and the university would benefit from more practical experience and more cross discipline idea exchange. It was felt that students would be more successful during and after college if they had broader real world information and experience.  
There were far too many ideas shared in the meeting than one could record mentally, but notes were taken and bold ideas were left on note cards for future assimilation. This is an exciting process with many valuable ideas coming from all who attended.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Weather -- What Else is there to Talk About?

Just kidding! The past couple of weeks have been a relatively quiet time for the strategic planning process as we continue to gather data from our community.  Here is a quick update on the process.

If you did not see the interview about the WSU strategic planning process, with my co-chair Ed O’Malley, in the February 15 edition of the Wichita Business Journal, make sure you check it out.

The WSU student subcommittee is analyzing the results from the WSU Student Town Hall meetings. We are excited to learn what the students heard from their colleagues. 

Recently, Steering Committee members engaged in Roundtable Discussions with various groups around campus. Those of you who attended are much appreciated.

We geared up for our third town hall meeting, but that’s where the weather interfered. We cancelled our February 20 town hall. Now we plan a combined campus community and the larger Wichita community town hall for:

Thursday, February 28, 2013, 5:30 PM - 7:00 PM, WSU Metropolitan Complex, Multipurpose Room

We hope to see lots of you at the combined town hall. It will be exciting to get a mix of campus and community participants. This town hall will be the last group opportunity to participate in the strategic planning process before a two-day Steering Committee retreat scheduled for late March. (More about the retreat in a later blog post.)

Enjoy your weekend and I look forward to seeing you Thursday, February 28, 2013!

Friday, February 8, 2013

Join the Discussion - Add Your Voice

If you have not checked out the WSU Strategic Planning Initiative website, you should. Right now, there is a terrific video that stars our WSU student subcommittee for strategic planning. They all look like stars!

The video is promoting the WSU Student Town Hall meetings. These meetings are designed to give WSU students the opportunity to voice their opinions about the future of WSU. The Student Town Hall meetings are set for:

Monday, February 11, 2013, 5:30 PM - 6:30 PM, Hubbard Hall, Room 208 (Greek night)
Thursday, February 14, 2013, 12:30 PM - 1:30 PM, CAC Theater
Tuesday, February 19, 2013, 5:30 PM - 6:30 PM, Ahlberg Hall, Room 200

If you are a student, please take the opportunity to attend. If you know students, encourage them to attend.

We also have two February Town Hall meetings set for the campus community and the larger community:

Campus Town Hall: Wednesday, February 20, 2013, 3:30 PM - 5:00 PM, WSU Metropolitan Complex, Sudermann Commons

Community Town Hall: Thursday, February 28, 2013, 5:30 PM - 7:00 PM, WSU Metropolitan Complex, Multipurpose Room

At these meetings we’ll ask you about your big, bold, exciting visions for WSU and discuss the work of the Steering Committee on mission and core values.

I know that everyone is busy. It is difficult to make time in our schedules to attend another meeting or event. But please remember that this initiative is important to the future of Wichita State University, and consequently to your future as an employee, student, or community member. Please join us and add your voice to the initiative.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Collaboration: What does it mean?

We enjoyed an energized meeting with the WSU Center Directors yesterday (January 31, 2013). The lively discussion and insightful ideas are tremendously beneficial to our strategic planning data gathering process. The notes from the meeting will be available on our website——as soon as they are transcribed. 

One item of discussion, among many, was the vital importance of collaboration. This topic has surfaced at many of our meetings and town hall events. The Steering Committee is considering what role this concept should play in WSU’s strategic plan. What does it mean, specifically for WSU? How should it be addressed in WSU’s strategic plan? What phrase or term should be used to describe it? One phrase we’ve tossed around is “interprofessional collaboration.” Some people like it; others think there must be a better description. What do you think? 

  • How should collaboration at WSU be defined? 
  • Is there a term or phrase that captures this definition?
  • How can we go about fostering collaboration at WSU? 

We would love to hear your thoughts please.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Strategic Planning -- A student/alumna perspective

Leslie Garren is a guest blogger this week. Leslie is a graduate of WSU with a degree in Strategic Communication from the Elliott School of Communication. She is currently pursuing her MBA. As part of her studies, she is assisting the Strategic Planning Steering Committee with data analysis, documentation of the process, and her insights as a student. Please enjoy reading her thoughts!

Are students excited about strategic planning efforts? While it is true that WSU students are immersed in balancing full-time jobs with full-time studies, I’ve found that students absolutely do care about the future of WSU.

MYTH: WSU students simply commute to WSU for classes because it is convenient. There is no “school spirit.”

I can prove you wrong. As a current graduate student, undergrad alum, university employee and past high school guest student, I’ve seen Wichita State through a couple of different perspectives. Not one experience has disappointed me.

I sit in the classrooms, I walk on the campus, I work with the faculty, and, I can tell you first-hand, WSU has a student body and faculty that are full of Shocker spirit and pride. During projects I work on in my coursework and during discussions I participate in during my lectures, I can clearly see; WSU students are learning because they desire to learn. They desire to strive for excellence. What does this say about WSU? We are the go-getters for the Wichita metroplex. We are the future. Wichita State enables us to make our future as bright as we desire to make it, not just for us as individuals, but for the Wichita community and state of Kansas, as well.

It is time for WSU to outgrow the label that we are in some way “inferior” to others. Students know their aspirations for quality education are bold, they are proud of these efforts. Our strategic planning committee has received advice to dream big and go bold. Are students ready for such changes? Ha, dreaming big and going bold is what got us at WSU in the first place! We are ready.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Data Gathering - Breakfast Meetings

Breakfast meetings! Those of you, who know me, know that I'm not a morning person. Consequently, the idea of me hosting 17 breakfast meetings in a relatively short period of time is probably unexpected. How did this idea take hold? 

Ed (my co-chair) and I started identifying what people needed to be heard from in the strategic planning process. We set up various methods of gathering information from key people—town hall meetings, small round table discussions, website comments, survey, visit to Topeka with Kansas Board of Regents.  

The WSU College Deans are key leverage points at the university. We decided to host individual breakfasts with them (and President Bardo's Executive Team). These meetings turned out to be informative and beneficial to our process. The Steering Committee members receive a one-page summary of each of these breakfast meetings, as one piece of the large data gathering effort in which we are engaging.

How can you be heard? Attend one of our upcoming town hall meetings. As they get closer, I’ll discuss what we will talk about at these meetings. Please put them on your calendar!

Until next time …

Thursday, January 17, 2013

January 16 Trip to Topeka to Visit the KBOR

I am pumped! I don't know what vision and big audacious goals will come out of this process for WSU, but after our visit to Topeka, I do know that they should be BOLD

Members of Steering Committee in Topeka
The purpose of our Topeka trip was to meet with the Kansas Board of Regents (KBOR). We asked the Regents to be part of our primary data collection process--to share with us their ideas about the future of higher education, and more specifically, WSU. The Regents were engaged and gave us permission, even better, requested that we be bold in our vision and goals. 

It was an exhilarating day. 

The morning began with several Legislators stopping by and giving us their ideas about WSU and our strategic plan. Then Governor Sam Brownback stopped by and gave us his undivided attention as we asked him his thoughts about WSU. We wrapped up our morning eating lunch with several members of the Executive Branch. 

After lunch, we got a brief but very informative tour of the Capitol by my co-chair, Ed O'Malley. Then on to the KBOR meeting. The Regents genuinely care about the future of WSU. They want us to decide what we want to be and then fulfill that mission. 

I read a saying today that sums up my feelings after out Topeka trip: Start with a vision that scares you a little and excites you a lot. 

Let's go!

Monday, January 14, 2013

January 2013 update

You may be wondering what has happened with the WSU Strategic Planning process since the kickoff meeting hosted by President John Bardo on September 5, 2012. I’m going to give a quick update.

President Bardo formed a Strategic Planning Steering Committee and invited Ed O’Malley (President and CEO of the Kansas Leadership Center) and me to co-chair the process. The Steering Committee membership consists of a mix of WSU faculty, staff, and students, as well as others from the Wichita community. A full list of the members is available on our website:

The committee meets once a month, with homework and subcommittee work occurring between these meetings. The agendas for these two-hour meetings are packed. Some of the agenda items include: familiarizing members with the inner workings of WSU; updating members on data gathering activities such as meetings, surveys, and student engagement opportunities; and developing initial drafts of various parts of the strategic plan. Thus far, we are working on a draft mission statement and a long list of core values for discussion. The meeting notes for all of the Steering Committee meetings are listed on our website:

During the first four months of this planning process, the Steering Committee has been singularly focused on data gathering—e.g., campus and community town hall meetings (see the town hall notes at, a survey sent to the Alumni Association members, and meetings with various groups. We think it is critical to a successful process to hear from all those interested in the future of WSU. Therefore, we plan to continue this data gathering process for a few more weeks.

In late February you can expect to see a draft mission statement and core values. These will be presented at another set of town hall meetings for feedback (see town hall meetings schedule).

Watch this space for updates. I’ll tell you more about our data gathering activities (especially the Steering Committee’s trip to Topeka next week to visit with the Kansas Board of Regents).

Until next time …

Welcome to the WSU Strategic Planning Initiative blog

My name is Cindy Claycomb. I am a Professor of Marketing at Wichita State University in the W. Frank Barton School of Business. Usually I spend my time teaching students and reading and writing about marketing topics that interest me. This year, however, at the request of WSU President Dr. John Bardo, I am co-chairing the strategic planning initiative for WSU.

I created this blog to help those with an interest in WSU see what’s going on during this process, to encourage dialogue about the process, and to allow me to express my thoughts and ideas about the process. Occasionally I will invite guests to blog here so you can see the process from a perspective different than mine. I hope you will join me in this journey.