Working Together to Shape the Process

This original draft outline of the planning groups and their roles was shared with the campus community for feedback between August 23 and September 15, 2018.

Steering Committee

Steering Committee co-chairs will be La Jerne Terry Cornish, provost; and Jason Freitag, associate professor of history, chair of strategic plan design team, and vice chair of Faculty Council.

Committee members should have a commitment to the design principles as well as sufficient legitimacy with the campus community to work through potentially difficult (but hopefully ultimately empowering) conversations about making choices as a community.  The Steering Committee will also help to set the tone of collaborative responsibility within the Working Groups, and across the campus as the primary ambassadors of the Strategic Planning process.

Selection of Members

Members will be chosen by the president and the co-chairs of the Steering Committee from among a pool of individuals. There will be a variety of nomination opportunities designed to access the largest array of possible participants in the process. Individuals will be able to self-nominate, or nominate another member of the campus community, through the Strategic Planning website.  The Design Team encourages everyone to activate their personal networks to help reach those members of the community who typically might not step forward.  The Steering Committee co-chairs will also reach out to the governance councils and other campus bodies for names of potential nominees.

Primary Charge

  • Coordinate the overall activities of the Strategic Planning Process 
  • Ensure the timely progress and completion of the Strategic Planning process.
  • Communicate with the IC community on a schedule defined in the communications plan
  • Seek advice and counsel from the Strategic Planning Partners
  • Produce the final report of the planning process

Anticipated Time Commitment

  • 2-hour meeting each week

  • Membership on Working Groups (for some)

  • Possible work outside meetings
Membership Inputs Deliverables

12-15 members selected based on expertise.

  • Provost (Chair, to co-chair with design team chair)
  • One vice president (in addition to chair)
  • Three faculty members
  • Two staff members
  • Two students
  • One representative from Student Affairs and Campus Life
  • One alum
  • Two current trustees
  • One Ithaca/Tompkins County community member

School strategic plans developed in 2017-2018

Previous campus-wide reports (e.g., Middle States, Campus Climate)

Community feedback

Examination of new paradigms /best practices in strategic planning

Resources on future orientation (e.g., Future Ed at Georgetown)

Current vision and mission statements

Guiding vision statement

Guiding mission statement

Guiding values statement (either at start or as final process product)


Working group membership

Working Groups

Working Groups should have ownership of their themes, and be responsible for creating opportunities for campus engagement. The Working Groups will choose the channels, frequency, and mechanisms for collecting input.  The groups will be responsible for scheduling these events, and collecting and organizing all feedback.

Selection of members

Members will be drawn from faculty, staff, students, and other relevant stakeholders. Each group will have two co-chairs. One will be a member of the Steering Committee, and one will be a member of the campus community, identified either through the general nominations process or based on expertise in a theme.

The co-chairs of each Working Group will select the remaining 6-8 members. They will review their membership with the Steering Committee co-chairs to ensure the groups are working consistently and that membership supports the planning process goals.

Primary Charge

Although the Steering Committee will set basic guidelines for the operation of Working Groups, they will have freedom to be creative in establishing themselves and determining how they will engage the community. Key responsibilities:

  • Own the planning work around their theme
  • Create opportunities for campus engagement
  • Choose the channels, frequency, and mechanisms for collecting input
  • Identify key stakeholders/audiences in advance of events
  • Schedule events, and collect and organize all feedback
  • Report results of events
  • Create goals and objectives for themes

Anticipated Time Commitment

  • 1-2-hour meetings each week, January-April
  • Possible work outside meetings
Membership Inputs Deliverables

Co-chaired by two people:

  • One co-chair of steering committee
  • One faculty or staff member as appropriate to theme

Six to eight additional members:

  • Selected for expertise/stake in theme
  • Mix of faculty/staff/students
  • Other stakeholders as appropriate
  • Alumni, trustees, community as appropriate

Themes identified by steering committee

Community (campus and external) events

Community feedback on work products

Goals and objectives

Strategic Planning Partners and Delegates

The Strategic Planning Partners are a group of delegates from across the college community (faculty, staff, students, and others) who will meet with the Steering Committee and Working Groups at scheduled, key points in the planning process to provide feedback and critique of the evolving strategic plan.  This group provides a mechanism for ongoing conversation between the participants in the planning process and representatives from a cross section of the community, especially those people who do not feel adequately represented through existing governance processes.  It also provides a mechanism to increase participation in and increased ownership of the planning process and outcomes.

Primary Charge

  • Provide a mechanism for ongoing conversation between the participants in the planning process and representatives from a cross section of the community
  • Act as stakeholders providing feedback; not serving in an an approval capacity

Anticipated Time Commitment

  • 1-2 meetings per semester
Membership Inputs Deliverables

Governance Councils (Faculty, Staff, and Student)

Strategic Planning Delegates

Senior Leadership Team

Working groups’ goals and objectives

Critique and feedback


The Consultants Group is made up of subject matter experts within the IC community, who will be involved in executing the final strategic plan.  They will lend their specific knowledge and expertise to help inform parts of the plan where their work would play a key role. They will be chosen by the president and provost.

Primary Charge

  • Provide advice and guidance to Working Groups on the development of goals and objectives 
  • Evaluate/validate thee feasibility of goals and objectives
  • Assist in execution of the agreed-upon strategic plan

Anticipated Time Commitment

  • Variable, as needed
Membership Inputs Deliverables

Representatives from units across the institution that would be involved in executing parts of the plan, selected based on their expertise and knowledge.

Working group queries

Periodic review of the working group outputs

Advice and guidance

Feasibility assessment

Budget, resource and time estimates

Board of Trustees

With fiduciary responsibility for the college, the Board of Trustees votes on final approval of the plan. The board does not dictate the plan's development process, content, or details. They will be kept up to date at key moments during the process. Members will also participate along with the campus by offering feedback and generating ideas.

Primary Charge

  • Charge the president, senior leadership team, and campus community with ensuring that an effective and inclusive planning process takes place.
Membership Inputs Deliverables

Current trustees

Working mission, vision, and values

Goals and objectives drafts from committees and action groups

Approval of mission, vision, values, goals, and objectives

Strategic-level feedback at key intervals

Operational Support

The provost and Senior Leadership Team will make assignments and allocate time within the work schedules of these support providers.

Primary Charge

  • Provide operational support to the planning groups.
Membership Inputs Deliverables

Specialists in areas such as:

  • Website development
  • Survey design
  • Advertising / social media
  • Graphic / video design
  • Event planning
  • Writing/editing

Steering Committee and Working Group queries

As determined by planning needs