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Transylvania Board of Trustees approves strategic plan

The Transylvania University Board of Trustees has approved the university’s strategic plan, Transylvania 2020, a comprehensive roadmap for the next seven years that encompasses enrollment growth, expansion of campus facilities, and enhancements to academic and student life programs.

“The vision of this plan is that Transylvania will be recognized as one of the nation’s finest liberal arts colleges,” said President R. Owen Williams. “The plan builds on the national reputation for excellence that Transylvania already enjoys and takes the university to an even higher level.”

The plan is organized around four primary goals: enhance innovative thinking, develop the whole person, promote civic engagement and social justice, and enhance campus infrastructure sustainably.

Among highlights of the specific strategies are a planned enrollment growth from the present size of approximately 1,100 to 1,500; the addition and renovation of residence, academic, student life, and athletics infrastructure; creation of an experimental pedagogy laboratory for faculty members to explore innovations in teaching and learning; expansion of interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary academic programs; and a commitment to serving as a model of sustainable land management and development in an urban setting.

“The most valuable aspect of this strategic planning exercise was the process we went through, which made the board fully analyze the college’s current situation and where it might go over the coming years,” said William T. Young Jr., chairman of the board. “It caused us to look at everything—factors that influence enrollment, cost of operation, and what we need to offer to continue to be relevant in tomorrow’s higher education world.”

The plan was developed by the Strategic Planning Committee, chaired by trustee Byron Young ’61, former professor of neurosurgery in the University of Kentucky College of Medicine. Input came from faculty, staff, students, alumni, and trustees. Costs outlined in the plan will be funded by projected enrollment growth and a capital campaign.

“The strategic plan is a bold initiative to propel Transylvania from its present status as a top 75 national liberal arts college into the top 50 ranks by 2020,” said Byron Young. “The roadmap to this destination resulted from the inclusive creative talents of many diverse groups of the college. Achieving this high aspiration will require the total commitment and vigorous effort of the entire Transylvania community.”

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