Q. What’s your evaluation of how the plan is progressing so far?
A. I’m really pleased with the volume and quality of what we have been able to accomplish. We have made progress across each of the strategic plan’s foundational goals and key initiatives, in the Health System and the Academic Division, here in Charlottesville and in Wise, and we have benefitted tremendously from the contributions of faculty, staff, students, alumni and community members, all of whom are committed to making UVA both great and good.
This would be admirable even on its own, but when you consider that shortly after the release of the strategic plan, we faced a global pandemic that has presented major challenges to every facet of our mission, it’s remarkable.
One of the most important steps we’ve taken is to establish an easily accessible dashboard and an implementation timeline, so that everyone can stay up to date on our progress at a glance. The timeline is regularly updated with headlines about accomplishments toward each key initiative, and the dashboard shows how far along we are on elements of each key initiative, so everyone can get a sense of what we’ve done and what’s left to do.
It’s been quite
to me to engage
with our community as
to a common goal – to
make our community as
Q. Has anything really surprised you in the three years since the launch?
A. I’m a little surprised, but mostly delighted, that the title of the plan, “Great and Good,” has seemed to resonate so much with the community. I hear people using it as a guidepost and a way to evaluate decisions and initiatives at the institutional level, but also at the personal level, which I think is terrific. It is the kind of thinking that feels right at home in the culture of UVA: How do we strive, in our personal and professional lives, to be both outstanding and ethical, or not just excellent, but excellent for the purpose of serving others and advancing the common good?
Q. Where are you looking to see progress over the next year or two?
A. Second-year housing is part of our Citizen-Leaders for the 21st Century initiative, which aims to prepare students to be productive servant-leaders in a diverse, globally connected world, regardless of their careers or professions. The idea behind creating new residential opportunities for second-years is that giving students more opportunities to live and learn together will help prepare them to live and lead in the increasingly diverse world they will enter when they graduate. We’ve now completed a pilot, hired a consulting group to work with us on planning and potential financing structures, and are expecting a report in the fall – so we will have more to share on that front soon.
Another area I’m looking forward to is our continued expansion in Northern Virginia through the UVA NOVA campus. We’re already offering several programs that matriculate more than 500 students per year, including professional and degree programs run by the Darden School of Business, the School of Education and Human Development, the McIntire School of Commerce, the School of Continuing and Professional Studies, and the School of Data Science. But we’re planning to expand those offerings with new online, in-person and hybrid programs in a variety of subjects. We think this will be an effective way to increase our reach and meet growing demand in the area.