Our mission, our vision, and our strategic plan are intricately linked as we identify how best to successfully bridge the liberal arts and professional aspirations. A steering committee composed of faculty, staff, and administrators from areas throughout the university identified six key strategic priorities to address in order to prepare Henderson to realize our vision and to fulfill our mission:
- Grow the Enrollment, Improve Student Life, and Increase Retention to Graduation
- Enhance Academic Programs
- Enhance the Quality of Life and the Ability to Recruit and Retain a Highly Qualified and Motivated Faculty and Staff
- Improve the Physical Environment and Infrastructure
- Expand and Diversify Revenues
- Enhance Henderson’s Regional, State, and National Profile
- Grow the enrollment, improve student life, and increase retention to graduation. Our strategies for this priority rest upon the belief that students benefit from an educational experience that will lead to degrees and prepare them for a lifetime of personal fulfillment and career success. Enhancing admission and enrollment programs will be critical to reaching our goal of 5,000 students. A coordinated first-year academic experience and a comprehensive student academic success program will give students the tools to succeed and stay in college their first year and beyond. Enhanced housing options will provide students with greater living comforts but also encourage participation in the university and community’s social and intellectual development opportunities. A comprehensive student engagement and development program will also contribute to these opportunities and assist students to make connections between their education within and beyond the classroom.
- Our excellent academic programs will be enhanced to match new and future career opportunities and to more deliberately bridge the liberal arts and professional aspirations. Developing new programs, seeking accreditation for new and existing programs, enhancing the Honors College, increasing experiential learning opportunities, and developing specific certificate programs all contribute to increasing the quality of our students’ education and expanding their opportunities. Additionally, increasing off-campus enrollment, online learning opportunities, and concurrent enrollment fulfills the needs of the communities we serve and a changing student population while granting more students greater access to a superior education.
- The quality of the education that students receive is determined by the motivation and quality of the faculty and staff. Improving total compensation, encouraging ongoing professional development, enhancing diversity, and ensuring an active and valued role in the organization are crucial strategies to enhancing the quality of life for faculty and staff and insuring integrity in the academic mission. This will enable Henderson to recruit and retain highly qualified faculty and staff to best serve our students in the classroom and beyond.
- An attractive, well-maintained campus is an essential component of a progressive, successful university,increasing the morale and pride of faculty, staff, and students, as well as providing the crucial infrastructure needed for teaching and engaging the students. To improve the physical environment and infrastructure, the strategic plan calls for a comprehensive, dynamic campus master plan; updated, state-of-the-art infrastructure systems including technology; and a commitment to sustainability and environmental stewardship.
- Looking beyond the horizon, Henderson anticipates far less support from the state in providing for the needs and education of our students. Expanding and diversifying revenues are crucial to achieving the goals of this strategic plan and for placing Henderson in a position to succeed in that future. In this plan, Henderson will increase faculty, staff, and alumni giving, conduct a comprehensive fundraising campaign, establish an office of sponsored programs to coordinate and generate grant funding, and increase auxiliary revenue.
- Henderson wishes to be Arkansas’s best-kept secret no longer. Our education and our mission set us apart from other universities, and our goal is to enhance Henderson’s regional, state, and national profile so that many more people, from prospective students to lawmakers to potential employers of our students, will know this. In order to enhance our profile, we will develop a branding guide, redesign the website, strengthen relationships with external audiences, and launch an integrated media campaign.
Henderson’s strategic plan reacts to the transformations taking place in higher education and our region. More importantly, it proactively guides the university beyond the immediate environment to anticipate changes and embrace opportunities as they arise. Our traditional focus on our students and their success will not change, but the opportunities that Henderson will have to prepare them for their futures will. Beyond the horizon, we are certain that Henderson will be recognized as a national model for bridging the liberal arts and professional aspirations, producing well-rounded graduates who are leaders in their careers and communities.