STRATEGIC PLANNING

STRATEGIC PLANS

Strategic Direction 1: Engage students in rigorous and transforming learning experiences, both in and out of the classroom, heightening their aspirations and empowering them to succeed as citizens in a challenging world.

Initiative 1.1:  Raise the level of academic challenge.

Strategies:

  • Articulate expectations for high levels of performance. 
  • Empower faculty with needed tools to establish and maintain the highest level of academic rigor.
  • Empower students with needed tools and support to perform at the highest level of academic rigor.
  • Use the five-year cycle of accreditations and program reviews to ensure quality and relevance of curricular offerings.
  • Improve Buffalo State’s academic profile and academic reputation.

Key Performance Indicators:

  • Buffalo State’s score in the “level of academic challenge” NSSE benchmark area will rise from 53.5 to at least 59.9, or to a score that earns Buffalo State a place in the current upper 50 percent of NSSE institutions.
  • Recognition of Buffalo State students in regional and national competitions and in academic societies will increase.
  • Progress toward the institutional goal of receiving and maintaining 100 percent accreditation of eligible programs will continue.
  • The institution’s academic reputation will improve in the perception of potential students, alumni, and community and business leaders.
  • Student perception of academic challenge will increase.

Budgetary Implications: $$$

Initiative 1.2:  Increase student participation in active, inquiry-based and collaborative forms of learning.

Strategies:

  • Infuse active, inquiry-based and collaborative pedagogies into the curriculum.
  • Provide professional development for faculty and staff to enhance skills in active, inquiry-based and collaborative pedagogy.
  • Engage an increased number of students in internships, service learning, capstone learning experiences, and similar collaborative initiatives.
  • Develop interdisciplinary initiatives (for example, the art conservation program or STEM disciplines) and consider institutional themes (for example, the “City as Curriculum”) reflective of academic and institutional distinctiveness.

Key Performance Indicators:

  • Buffalo State’s score for the “active and collaborative learning” NSSE benchmark area will rise from 49.7 to at least 55.4, or to a score that earns Buffalo State a place in the current upper 50 percent of NSSE institutions.
  • The number of students in service learning courses will increase.
  • Seniors reporting internships on the NSSE will increase.
  • Programs with capstone/culminating learning experiences will increase.
  • There will be evidence of student and faculty involvement with collaborative initiatives such as the American Democracy Project.
  • Student involvement in interdisciplinary, service, action-based and inquiry-based learning will increase.

Budgetary implications: $$

Initiative 1.3: Promote student, faculty and staff interaction to enhance learning and to support student progress toward graduation.

Strategies:

  • Improve, strengthen and support advisement as a means of facilitating student retention and progress toward graduation.
  • Intensify and support curricular and co-curricular opportunities for student-faculty-staff interaction.

Key Performance Indicators:

  • Buffalo State’s score in the “student-faculty interaction” NSSE benchmark area will rise from 41.4 to at least 49.3, or to a score that earns Buffalo State a place in the current upper 50 percent of NESSE institutions.
  • Student surveys (SUNY SOS, NSSE, ACT Advising) will indicate that advisement of all students in every program has improved.
  • The number of student-faculty interactions in research, learning communities, and with student organizations will increase.
  • The number of full-time faculty engaged in research with undergraduate students will increase.
  • The Residence Hall faculty-fellows program will expand.

Budgetary implications: $$

Initiative 1.4:  Enrich educational experiences by increasing complementary learning opportunities and connecting co-curricular and curricular experiences.

Strategies:

  • Infuse diversity, global issues and different perspectives throughout the curriculum.
  • Increase national and international experiences of students.
  • Strengthen student involvement with staff and alumni in activities at the college.
  • Increase student engagement in workplace or community settings.
  • Implement interdisciplinary themes to enhance learning.
  • Integrate resources of the Burchfield Penney into curricula and programs at the college.

Key Performance Indicators:

  • Buffalo State’s score for the “enriching educational experiences” NSSE benchmark area will rise from 37 to at least 47.3, or to a score that earns Buffalo State a place in the current upper 50 percent of NSSE institutions.
  • An increase will occur in the number of students who have had an international experience before graduation.
  • The number of students (in/out) in national exchange programs will increase.
  • Members of the campus community with National Coalition Building Institute or other diversity training will increase.
  • A co-curricular transcript to reflect student engagement will be implemented.
  • Interdisciplinary themes will be evidenced in a number of new courses or revised courses.
  • Student involvement with alumni and staff will increase.

Budgetary Implications: $$$

Initiative 1.5:  Provide a supportive campus environment that enables students to thrive academically and socially.

Strategies:

  • Increase cross-cultural interaction among students from diverse cultures and racial/ethnic backgrounds.
  • Create physical spaces that support the integration of academic and social activity and engagement.
  • Employ technology effectively to support instruction and administration.
  • Increase student access to support services (e.g., Academic Skills, library, computer labs, studios, Information Commons).
  • Implement a comprehensive communication plan for students.
  • Complete facility improvements to enhance the learning environment and campus life.
  • Instill in students acceptance of the standards of behavior associated with Buffalo State’s "Compact for a Civil and Caring Academic Community."

Key Performance Indicators:

  • Buffalo State’s score in the "supportive campus environment" NSSE benchmark area will rise from 53.7 to 63.5, or to a score that earns Buffalo State a place in the current upper 50 percent of NSSE institutions.
  • Facilities improvements and new construction (phase 1 of Math-Science Complex; Technology Building; new Residence Halls) will be completed.
  • All classrooms capable of being technology-enhanced will be renovated.
  • The percent of the campus having wireless connectivity will increase.
  • Student use of support services will increase.
  • The square footage of space used for integrated academic and social activities will increase.
  • A comprehensive communication plan will be in place.
  • The percentage of students reporting awareness and acceptance of the community standards under Buffalo State’s "Compact for a Civil and Caring Academic Community" will increase annually.

Budgetary Implications:  $$$$$

Initiative 1.6:  Provide access to higher education through enrollment of an appropriate number and mix of undergraduate students who can be served effectively by Buffalo State programs and resources.

Strategies:

  • Exceed national norms of peer institutions in enrollment, retention, and six-year graduation rates.
  • Provide a unified, comprehensive first-year experience that integrates academic and non-academic programs.
  • Ensure a smooth, seamless transition for transfer students.
  • Grow evening and weekend degree programs.
  • Aggressively pursue online and hybrid course development to serve students.
  • Create new undergraduate and graduate majors that attract students, meet state and regional needs, and comply with the college mission; ensure a broad spectrum of course offerings.
  • Strengthen the academic profile of both the EOP and general admit full-time freshman cohort.
  • Use effective marketing and branding to enhance the academic profile of applicants to the college.
  • Establish and meet five-year enrollment goals for various student cohorts

Key Performance Indicators:

  • The first-to-second-year retention rate for incoming full-time freshman students will meet or exceed those of peer institutions.
  • Transfer student retention and graduation will increase.
  • Credit hours generated annually in evening and weekend courses will increase.
  • Credit hours generated annually in online and hybrid courses will increase.
  • The number of degrees awarded annually will increase.
  • Regular admit applicants will increase both in number and in the percentage of applicants exceeding a high school average of 85.
  • The first-time student six-year graduation rates will increase to over 50 percent.
  • Market research and branding reports will show an increase in awareness and perception of Buffalo State’s academic strength, diversity of programs, and other comparative advantages.

Budgetary Implications:  $$$$

Initiative 1.7: Strengthen the campus presence of graduate studies at Buffalo State.

Strategies:

  • Use assessment measures to ensure quality of graduate programs.
  • Strengthen procedures for collaboration, communication, and consultation among students, the Graduate School, department chairs, and graduate faculty.
  • Collaborate with Institutional Advancement and the Research Foundation to seek external funds to support graduate programs, students, and faculty.
  • Support current graduate programs to meet student demand and quality of instruction.
  • Identify and develop new graduate programs responsive to student and society needs and faculty expertise.
  • Analyze the ways in which graduate assistantships can be used to increase the number and quality of graduate students who attend Buffalo State.
  • Benchmark retention, time-to-degree, program-completion, and two-year graduation rates against comparable graduate institutions.

Key Performance Indicators:

  • Assessment plans will be in place and implemented to create improvements in graduate programs.
  • Stronger procedures for collaboration, communication and consultation will have been implemented.
  • External funding will increase.
  • Current programs will be supported and new programs will be identified and put into place.
  • An analysis of the ways funded graduate assistantships can benefit the graduate program will be completed.
  • The average annual stipend for graduate assistants will increase to levels competitive with local graduate institutions.
  • Retention, time-to-degree, program-completion, and two-year graduation rates will meet or exceed the benchmarks set by comparable graduate institutions.

Budgetary Implications: $$$$

Initiative 1.8:  Ensure appropriate levels and ranks of full- and part-time faculty.

Strategies:

  • Ensure complement of faculty sufficient to achieve institutional mission, to serve the number of students enrolled, and to create the desired intellectual environment.
  • Provide effective professional development opportunities and other support for faculty advancement.

Key Performance Indicators:

  • The number of full-time tenure track faculty will increase.
  • The number of part-time faculty will decrease.
  • The diversity in tenure-track faculty will equal benchmarks set by peer institutions.
  • More faculty members will be promoted to distinguished ranks.
  • The number of endowed chairs and professorships will increase.
  • The number of faculty participating in professional development opportunities will increase.

Budgetary Implications: $$$$$