Throughout the year, we will continue to make progress on the other Academic Futures’ themes and projects:
The Academic Futures Report, reflecting a campus desire for stronger and more clearly defined governance structures, called for every school and college to review its governance structure to ensure that it was meeting the needs of faculty, staff and students.
To that end, over the 2019-20 academic year, Provost Russ Moore charged CU Boulder’s deans with developing more comprehensive governance structures in their schools and colleges. The goal is to develop more unified governance approaches at the college and school level, develop a governance ecosystem where units can learn from each other, and together find opportunities to support the important work of the Boulder Faculty Assembly.
Ensuring that campus maintains governance bodies that are recognized by faculty as representative of their ideas, concerns and input are touchstones of successful shared governance and work toward greater openness—values that serve the public good.
Campus success: physical resources
Strategic Facilities Visioning provides the foundation for physical infrastructure planning needed for CU Boulder to carry out its mission, serve its constituents, and successfully execute on all of the priority themes and projects from Academic Futures.
The work of the Strategic Facilities Visioning team over the past year is culminating this fall in the development and refinement of a data-rich planning tool that will help our campus leadership make the most meaningful and impactful infrastructure investment decisions in support of the campus mission and the strategic priorities emanating from Academic Futures.
This tool will also play a vital role in testing and evaluating different facilities scenarios as we embark on creation of the next Campus Master Plan over the next two years.
What it means to be a public university today
What it means to be a public university today is a question deeply embedded in Academic Futures and in our daily activities of research, scholarship, creative work, teaching and service.
It finds meaning in the questions of faculty surrounding shared governance, research, and outreach and engagement with the public. It is a core question for students, relating to affordability, and the value and utility of a public research university degree. It is found in the questions of staff regarding openness, transparency, partnership and fulfillment in daily work, and most certainly, in the questions of a skeptical public on affordability, purpose and return on investment.
Throughout the third year of Academic Futures, the campus will address this theme in its input to leadership on initiatives such as Interdisciplinary Teaching, Research, and Creative Work; in the faculty discussions and responses to re-envisioning governance; and in administrative statements on policy and programmatic directions.
Later this year, Academic Futures will submit to the campus a new proposal to revitalize and re-envision the engagement of faculty, staff and students with communities, demonstrating the values of the university community, the value of its people, and the potential of a public university in elevating the public good.
Sustaining, supporting and inspiring our community
Under the IDEA Plan, we are creating commitments to diversity, equity and inclusive excellence that will sustain, support, and inspire our research, scholarship, creative work, teaching and service.
These efforts will also have direct benefits for diverse communities and individuals outside the university, improving their access to CU Boulder resources, programs and communities of expertise and practice, furthering the public’s faith in the university, its engagement with the university, and its confidence that the university is representative of the public it represents.
For example, innovations such as the Center for Teaching and Learning, called for in Academic Futures, Foundations of Excellence, and the IDEA Plan, will support and inspire our community with resources and opportunities to hone teaching skills, practices and holistic growth.
Internationalizing our campus
Unifying the university’s efforts around international education, learning, research and scholarship is a recommended project of Academic Futures, with benefits for students, faculty, and local and international publics. Look for next steps on this project later this year.