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SWOT Results

Preface

Where are we Today? Assessing our current environment

  • Conducted individual SWOT sessions with several key stakeholders groups
    • Administrative Leadership
    • Deans and Vice Provosts
    • Vice Presidents
    • Executive Committee of the Faculty Senate
    • Executive Committee of the Staff Senate
    • Executive Committee of the Student Government Association
    • Academic Department Chairs
    • Graduate Council
  • Held two Town Hall meetings with approximately 100 faculty and staff
  • Created web-site encouraging campus community to provide their perspectives about the U of L
  • Solicited input from the Board of Trustees, the Board of Overseers, and the U of L Foundation Board
  • Over 5,000 individual comments have been received from more than 650 faculty, staff, students, and external stakeholders
  • Every comment has been reviewed, and has been organized into thematic findings
  • All themes, and all 5,000 comments, will be provided to each of the four Committees
    • Each team will be asked to independently review the data to further assess the findings and conclusions
  • Each team will use the comments to gain insight into our current environment and will seek to develop paths for leveraging our strengths, pursuing our best opportunities, and overcoming our greatest challenges and threats.

Thematic results from the assessment – General Observations

  • There are high levels of pride in the institution and the faculty, staff and students are committed to the University's long term success
  • The future of on-line education is perhaps the most polarizing topic on the campus
  • There are significant cultural differences and divides between the Belknap and HSC campuses
  • Everyone feels resourced constrained – There are simply too few dollars to go around and a fear that we may be reaching our own fiscal cliff
    • In spite of the financial challenges the University has performed extraordinarily well but people are feeling overwhelmed
  • There is widespread belief that the University's opportunities outweigh its threats

 

Overall Analysis

  • Our greatest strength is the quality of our people
    • Our outstanding and dedicated faculty
    • Our committed and loyal staff
    • Our exceptional students
  • There is clear and widespread support and admiration for the strength and stability of the University's leadership, particularly for our President and Provost
  • Beyond our President and Provost, leadership in general is seen as a significant strength
    • Our Administrative Leaders
    • Our Board of Trustees
    • Our Academic Leaders
  • Athletics is seen as a real strength and there is wide spread enthusiasm about moving to the ACC
  • The quality of Research is viewed as leading edge and an inspirational strength
  • There is excitement about the bold steps being taken in Health Affairs, particularly the new hospital partnership
    • The Health Sciences programs and its research are viewed as a significant strength with KentuckyOne Health being critical to leveraging this strength
  • There are extraordinarily high levels of pride across the University for the institution itself and for the community
  • The alumni is viewed as a strength with tremendous value and potential
  • The University's vision of the future and its commitment to strategic thinking are considered strengths
  • The manner in which the University supports its people is considered a strength
    • Student support
    • Campus community
    • Commitment to diversity
  • The Louisville community at-large is seen by many as a strength
  • The University's academic, financial, operational, and institutional performance, particularly in an era of financial constraint, are seen as significant strengths
  • The lack of financial resources is seen as our greatest challenge
  • Our decentralized structure and our silos are seen as impediments to our potential
  • There is a general belief that we lack strategic focus and prioritization
  • There are a wide range of cultural issues:
    • Morale is reported as being low among many faculty and staff
    • There are perceptions of inequity across the campus in pay, treatment, etc.
    • The lack of accountability is seen as a weakness
    • Many people cited a culture of mediocrity and complacency as a weakness
  • A belief that a greater focus and attention on research is needed
  • The University's academic reputation is seen as a weakness
  • IT support, and the cost of IT, are seen as weaknesses
  • Compensation is seen as a weakness, limiting morale, retention and recruitment
  • Many of our facilities are seen as an impediment to our long term success
  • Many people expressed a concern that there is too much emphasis on athletics, diluting the focus on academics
  • Student advising is seen as a weakness
  • Many expressed the view that fundraising could be improved and deliver greater value to the University
  • Gaps in leadership are seen as a weakness
    • Too many interim positions
    • Important and necessary leadership skills are not uniformly exhibited across the institution
    • There is a need for leadership training
  • Community engagement and economic development are seen as significant opportunities for the University
  • Expanding and enhancing academics is seen as an opportunity for the future
  • Exploring new and emerging partnerships are seen as necessary opportunities
  • Continuous growth of health affairs and being a leader in health care are seen as unique opportunities for the University and the community
  • Opportunities to create new revenue streams are seen critical to our future
  • Increasing the involvement and engagement of our alumni are seen as key opportunities for the future
  • Exploring and creating new educational delivery models are seen as opportunities for the future
  • On-line education is seen by many as an opportunity
  • Continuing to leverage the success of athletics is viewed by many as an opportunity
  • Research is seen as an opportunity for growth
  • Opportunities for a broader global outlook are present
  • There are opportunities to enhance the University's academic reputation
  • Further enhancing our brand and reputation are seen as significant opportunities
  • The continuous erosion of financial resources, particularly from the state, are seen as the biggest threat to the University
  • The local, regional, and national economy are seen as long term threats
  • Increased competition at every level are seen as considerable threats to the University
    • Financial resources
    • Grants and contracts
    • Students
    • Faculty
    • Staff
  • The ever increasing pace of change and an inability to evolve are seen as significant threats
    • Concerns about complacency and mediocrity are seen as threats to excellence
  • Further tuition increases are seen by many as a threat to the University
  • Expansive on-line education is seen by many as a threat to academic quality and to the institution itself
  • Several people raised issues of safety on college campuses and crime in the community and on the campus as threats to the University
  • Increasing perceptions about declining value of higher education are seen by many as posing significant risks into the future Complacency

 

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