Office of the President
After getting feedback from faculty, staff, students and the community, the President and Board of Trustees have created four major areas of work to guide the strategic plan. The four major areas include (details below):
Download the strategic plan
Fort Lewis College is unique among public institutions. Influenced by its history as an Indian boarding school and deeply rooted in its southwestern location in the Four Corners, FLC’s commitment to access, affordability, academic excellence, and equitable opportunities for its diverse student body has been integral to its DNA since its founding more than a century ago. FLC leverages the cultural and natural abundance of its region through a focus on experiential learning guided by high quality faculty via rigorous degree options.
FLC creates a sense of belonging for all our students and ensures that they develop the ability to critically understand the world around them, clearly express themselves, and effectively work in teams. To actualize this commitment to our students, we will:
Develop and support students as whole people through a culture of caring and personalization;
Provide authentic and graduate-quality research opportunities for undergraduates;
Embed experiential learning practices throughout our curriculum;
Respond to our community’s needs;
Work toward reconciling our complicated past;
Provide experiences for students to build resilience and adaptability;
Leverage the curricular and co-curricular assets of our location; and
Pursue interdisciplinary approaches to address the major scientific and social issues of the future.
FLC faculty and staff work every day to make the world around them a better place through scholarship, teaching, and service. True to our institution’s liberal arts roots, they create learning opportunities that prepare students to flourish in an uncertain world through developing essential skills for the future and an entrepreneurial spirit. The challenges and opportunities facing the Four Corners reflect critical issues facing contemporary society, and as such, serve as a unique learning environment. Therefore, at FLC, we consider how to:
Reduce disparities in health, wellness, education, and economic outcomes by considering the moral, historical, and ethical aspects of these issues;
Foster students’ ability to take action to confront scientific, social, and environmental challenges by complementing critical thinking with development of current and transferable technical know-how and communications skills; and
Connect caring with resilience, a sense of belonging with understanding, and critical thinking with tangible impact through all our teaching, research and co-curricular activities.
At its September 2018 meeting, the FLC Board of Trustees endorsed several high-level priorities to guide the College’s strategic planning process prioritizing putting students at the center of our campus community’s work. The work of the strategic planning team was motivated by the fundamental premise of “students at the center.”
Another critical priority endorsed by the Board is to achieve financial sustainability. That priority is reflected throughout the strategic plan, through goals to increase enrollment, diversify the College’s revenue generating activities, including expanding online offerings and strengthen data-informed decision making for allocating scarce resources. Additionally, the Board signaled the value of our student diversity and this plan embraces our role as a non-tribal Native American Serving institution.
The strategic plan that follows is organized into key areas of emphasis that emerged from wide-ranging discussions with the FLC community and the greater region. These areas of emphasis will serve as touchstones to guide the College’s decision making at both the leadership level and in the day-to-day work of faculty and staff. They include:
Students at the Center;
Knowledge as Action; and
Community and Regional Relationships.
A fourth area of emphasis, which will permeate and support all of the College’s strategic planning efforts, is:
Systems to Facilitate Success.
Primary objectives and key results are presented within each of these four strategic areas of emphasis, along with initiatives designed to achieve them. Key results are largely dependent on improvement from baseline data; likewise, so that efficacy and progress can be measured, many initiatives will begin by establishing baseline data where needed (e.g., alumni job placements, regional labor market needs, etc.). Similarly, the development of certain systems will require identifying best practices from both within and outside the College. Specific key results will then flow from baseline data.
This strategic plan presents a positive call to action to the entire FLC community and marks the beginning of an exciting time for the College. Over the next few years, FLC will strive to reach its full potential as a national example of serving students, the community, and the nation, with an unyielding commitment to access and academic excellence.
Objective: Use high impact curricular and co-curricular practices to improve student success and retention.
Objective: Serve our students through innovative and best recruitment, communication, and admission practices.
Objective: Support students’ abilities to deeply engage with the most critical scientific and social issues of the future by investing in and leveraging FLC’s academic strengths. Do so in concert with holistic practices to develop the whole student and foster effective communication skills that flow from FLC’s roots in the liberal arts.
Objective: Improve the quality and relevance of FLC academic offerings by deepening connections to post-graduate and professional programs and labor market needs.
Objective: Expand and leverage resources that enhance the College’s impact in the community through economic and workforce development.
Objective: Create new pathways and partnerships for educational enrichment and/or employment that meet market needs in the Four Corners region.
Objective: Better connect faculty and staff expertise to community needs to foster regional economic and community development.
Objective: Evaluate, assess, and improve upon current practices and new initiatives as outlined in this strategic plan.
Objective: Facilitate and improve communication across campus and throughout the community.
Objective: Develop, support, and reward faculty and staff through improving our Human Resources function.