Engagement process underway for U-M’s strategic vision


The University of Michigan is making progress on gathering input from the campus community to build its strategic vision for the next 10 years and beyond.

University leaders announced in March that they would seek broad community input from students, faculty, staff and alumni across the three U-M campuses, including Michigan Medicine, to inform a collective vision for the university’s future — its Vision 2034.


Since then, U-M has directly engaged hundreds of students, faculty and staff through four campuswide interactive town halls and dozens of smaller information-gathering sessions at the school, college and unit level. Nearly 1,000 ideas about the university’s future have been collected from the community, including from donors and alumni via an online submission form.

In addition, Michigan Medicine leadership recently introduced its vision at a community town hall with more than 2,000 in attendance. It is planning visioning sessions — including on Vision 2034 — for Michigan Medicine students, faculty, staff and senior leadership in the coming weeks.

“These sessions not only bring out the community’s excitement and energy around forecasting what the future of the University of Michigan can be but are helping to identify areas of commonality across the U-M community,” said Jenny Faust, project lead from Vision 2034.

While it is still early in the process, Faust notes that some common themes are emerging across these conversations, including a vision of U-M as an inclusive, connected community of individuals who are both thriving and solving the most pressing challenges that confront the university and the communities it serves.

Additional campuswide town halls have been added for the month of May with more than 40 additional, unit-level information sessions planned for the coming weeks on the Ann Arbor campus. UM-Dearborn and UM-Flint will engage in conversations about how their work on strategic planning and transformation, respectively, will inform the overall vision for U-M.

The information gathered also will be used to inform a campuswide survey to be developed in the coming months in partnership with the U-M Institute for Social Research.

During the summer months, the project team will begin to analyze community input, and review other university initiatives — such as the work of the Well-being Collective, Culture Journey, DEI 2.0 strategic planning and carbon neutrality planning — to identify parallel themes to inform the strategic visioning process.

The project team will share early findings from the visioning process with the community and university leadership for feedback in the fall.

An advisory committee has also been established to represent the diverse perspectives and interests of the U-M community while serving to provide the Vision 2034 leadership team with input and feedback throughout the process.

Members of the committee represent UM-Dearborn, UM-Flint, Michigan Medicine, the Senate Advisory Committee on University Affairs, the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, several university executive offices, as well as students.

The final strategic vision is expected to be announced by President Santa J. Ono in early 2024.

Vision 2034 is being led by U-M’s three executive vice presidents: Geoffrey Chatas, executive vice president and chief financial officer; Laurie McCauley, provost and executive vice president for academic affairs; and Marschall Runge, executive vice president for medical affairs, dean of the Medical School and CEO of Michigan Medicine.

The executive vice presidents also are facilitating a yearlong, comprehensive campus planning effort — Campus Plan 2050 — to develop a blueprint for how the physical Ann Arbor campus will develop over the next 30 years to support the university’s mission and vision. The campus planning efforts will both be informed by the Vision 2034 work and will in turn inform the visioning process.


Leave a comment

Commenting is closed for this article. Please read our comment guidelines for more information.