College of Liberal Arts & Sciences
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  • Strategic Theme 5: Leadership, Engagement and Strategic Growth

Strategic Theme 5: Leadership, Engagement and Strategic Growth

We will position the College to grow sustainably, guided by strategic planning. Through leadership development, we will effectively prepare faculty and staff for key leadership roles across campus. We will also build support for the liberal arts and sciences in public opinion and in financial giving through strategic communications, partnerships and programs. And, we will seek opportunities to improve the atmosphere for learning and working through facilities projects. All of this will be done in an environment of shared governance and transparency, allowing faculty and staff to take part in our direction forward.

Strategy 1 – Deepen leadership development among faculty and staff


  1. Enhance chair/director training while working with chairs/directors to mentor faculty within units to assume future leadership roles
  2. Expand and standardize onboarding opportunities for faculty and staff to understand the resources available and to develop early opportunities for leadership development
  3. Develop faculty and staff fellow roles that can support leadership development
Strategy 2 – Demonstrate transparent, responsive, data-informed leadership


  1. Improve the flow of communication on decisions and updates relevant to daily activities of the College, including information from both the Dean’s Office and other campus offices
  2. Work to ensure consistency in the statement and implementation of policies and procedures across the units, College and campus
  3. Identify and respond to pressing issues in a manner that is thoughtful and proactive with timely collection and use of anonymous feedback
  4. Expand and articulate meaningful opportunities for governance committees to impact the future direction of the College
  5. Gather faculty and staff feedback annually through an anonymous survey, using results to inform decisions and strategy
Strategy 3 – Advance our mission through strategic communications and alumni engagement


  1. Continue to produce engaging alumni communications (Collegian, e-Collegian, social media) and train departments and programs to institute their own where appropriate
  2. Enlist College Alumni Advisory Board in key fundraising, planning and outreach initiatives, while also supporting departments and programs in managing their own advisory boards where appropriate
  3. Increase training opportunities for units to create and/or further develop their own approaches to alumni engagement and fundraising
  4. Provide training and resources for faculty to advocate on behalf of higher education and university research via opinion columns, editorials and blogs in popular media
  5. Improve the accessibility and visibility of faculty, student and alumni accomplishments and impact through social media, print, web and other multimedia campaigns and initiatives
  6. Create branding statements and messaging that extol the impact and importance of public intellectualism and liberal arts and sciences, to be integrated in pre-existing communications and considered for stand-alone campaigns and projects to stakeholders on- and off-campus
  7. Build stronger connections in Lawrence and across the state of Kansas by promoting research, creative works and community-based projects as well as implementing pedagogical/research-based programs that bring our strengths in the arts, humanities, languages and culture, and the full range of the sciences to support the education of all Kansans throughout their lifetimes
Strategy 4 – Institute ongoing strategic planning and implementation


  1. Initiate and maintain a planning process that is incremental, responsive, adaptive and inclusive that will make our direction clear and allow flexibility for units to meet College priorities and individual unit goals simultaneously
  2. Support units as they develop their own planning process in ways that are meaningful and an effective use of time
  3. Leverage existing strengths at the unit level by identifying best practices across units and share them out broadly for consideration and possible adoption by other units
  4. Identify and support the development of partnerships with other universities in the U.S. and internationally to collaborate on key College priorities

Accountability metrics

  • Faculty and staff perception of leadership development opportunities, as reported in annual anonymous feedback survey
  • Faculty and staff satisfaction with the Dean and Dean’s Office, as reported in annual anonymous feedback survey
  • Transparency rating from faculty, staff and graduate students, as reported in annual anonymous feedback survey
  • Annual giving totals
  • Social media reach and engagement
  • Pass/fail rating of strategic plan metrics