University of Vermont

Former President Daniel Mark Fogel

Advancing UVM The Year Ahead_July 6_2004

University of Vermont
Office of the President


Date: July 6, 2004

To: UVM Faculty and Staff

From: Daniel Mark Fogel, President
A. John Bramley, Senior Vice President and Provost

Re: Advancing UVM: The Year Ahead

In May the UVM Board of Trustees unanimously endorsed the Vision, the Strategic Plan, and the Strategic Financial Plan for the University of Vermont. That vote set the course to establish UVM as the nation’s premier small public research university.

The Board’s confidence was bolstered by an independent assessment of the Strategic Financial Plan by the international consulting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers, an assessment that spoke powerfully to the feasibility of the Vision: We can achieve the boldly ambitious plans we have developed together so long as there is broad understanding of the Vision and commitment to what is required to achieve it among our faculty, staff, students, alumni, and friends.

To promote such understanding, we have created a website, “Advancing the Vision: 2004-2013.” The site contains the following documents:

• The University Strategic Plan (4 pages)
• The Strategic Financial Plan (119 pages)
• An executive summary of the Strategic Financial Plan (8 pages)
• The evaluation of the Strategic Financial Plan by the independent consulting firm Price-waterhouseCoopers (19 pages)
• The Vision Statement we issued in late January of 2003 (unpaginated)
• A matrix of goals, objectives, assignments of responsibility for achieving the objectives, and progress reports to date (a tool we use to establish implementation timetables and ac-countability among senior leadership [23 pages])
• Construction updates on all of the major projects under way on the campus (unpaginated)

The website can be accessed at; it is also available through links on the home pages of the Office of the President and the Office of the Provost.

The materials on the site are lengthy, but you can get a quick overview simply by reading the University Strategic Plan and the executive summary of the Strategic Financial Plan. The latter might best be summed up as a detailed demonstration that the Vision and Strategic Plan are fea-sible, representing greatness that truly lies within our grasp.

The January 2003 Vision Statement made a compelling case for a series of investments, pre-dominantly in facilities, which we believe are vital to the well-being of the University. However, it is essential for all members of the University community to understand that those investments, predominantly in new facilities, are only means to an end.

The end is the fulfillment of our destiny as a University that provides an outstanding educational experience to students, that is a center of world-class research, scholarship, and creative activity, and that provides, in the Land Grant tradition, vital service to Vermont and the world. And we must do all of those things in ways that promote and enhance the University’s commitment to its core values of intellectual liberty, environmental stewardship, health, excellence in the liberal arts, equity, and social justice.

To pursue those ends in the coming year, we will be promoting active, communal dialogue on a series of key questions:

• What must we do to establish UVM as a leading center of innovative liberal arts educa-tion in the 21st century?
• What must we do in our instructional programs, in our research and scholarship, and in our institutional practices to make good on our claim of being the nation’s environmental university?
• To what niche areas within the vast domain of health, medicine, and the life sciences should we commit differential resources in order to establish programs that are the very best in the world?
• What steps must we take to ensure that the University fully realizes its promise as the key driver of Vermont’s bid to establish a viable, productive, and prosperous position in the global economy?
• How do we align everything we do behind the need to offer an exceptional educational experience to our students, at a University of high academic quality with an efficient, ser-vice-oriented approach to supporting our people and activities?

We are convinced that the imperatives we laid out a year and a half ago remain fully viable. To succeed in the pursuit of the Vision for UVM, we must work hard together to build an out-standing, supportive, diverse, and highly collaborative community of scholars comprising all members of the campus community, faculty, staff, and students.

As a critical step in the never-ending work of creating that community, we encourage everyone to visit the “Advancing the Vision” website; to review, at the very least, the summary materials linked to that site; and to be active participants in the unfolding dialogue on the pressing aca-demic questions before us. As a community, we must develop and embrace thoughtful, sound, bold, and creative answers to those questions if we are to succeed.

Last modified November 18 2004 06:41 PM

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