Sunset on ISU strategic plan extended six months

Iowa State's current five-year strategic plan, "Meeting the Challenges of the 21st Century," will extend into a sixth year. In a Jan. 20 memo to his three senior vice presidents, President Steven Leath shared his intent to use the plan for six months past its scheduled expiration date at the end of this calendar year. It will remain in place through June 30, 2016.

Leath noted several reasons for his decision:

  • Later this year, the state Board of Regents will begin its own strategic planning process. Delaying the start of the university planning process will allow Iowa State's strategic plan to address board priorities.
  • Aligning the strategic plan with the fiscal year – which begins on July 1 -- rather than the calendar year better connects annual budget strategies to broader plans.
  • The extra months provide time and opportunity to involve more stakeholders in the process of developing the next strategic plan.
  • Iowa State continues to make progress on each of the four priorities in the current strategic plan, which focuses on fulfilling the university's land-grant responsibilities.

The process

Leath said that by fall he will provide his long-term vision for Iowa State, which will become a guide for developing the next strategic plan. His goal, he wrote, is that the next strategic plan will be presented to him no later than May 1, 2016.

"Iowa State University has tremendous opportunities," Leath wrote, "and I look forward to developing a plan that helps us strategically focus our resources in areas that make an enduring impact for our state, nation and world."