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To the William Paterson University Community

The work on the University’s Strategic Plan has moved forward this summer, and as the new academic year approaches, I want to update the campus community on our progress and what to expect in the next few months.

We started this project on April 1, 2011, working with strategic planning consultants Anthony Knerr and John Braunstein of Anthony Knerr and Associates. As they have constantly reminded us, there cannot be too much feedback in the Strategic Planning Process.  Mindful of this admonition, we engaged in discussions with many campus constituent groups over the spring term. Four dinners with faculty and staff in April and May on institutional visibility, resource planning, academic focus, and enrollment management were attended by over 100 people and garnered much valuable feedback and good ideas.  I met with the Directors’ Council in May with 40 people in attendance. We discussed a SWOT Analysis of the University (Strengths-Weaknesses-Opportunities-Threats) and had a long discussion about how to improve the University. In June, the William Paterson University Foundation Board and the Alumni Executive Council met to discuss the strategic planning process. [Notes from all these meetings are available for review on the Strategic Planning website, click here to view (requires login)].

Immediately after Commencement in May, the Board of Trustees held a retreat on strategic planning, led by our consultants. Our Board has taken a concerted interest in the planning process, and has offered their advice and guidance to the process. We are fortunate to have such an engaged and supportive Board which ultimately is the body that must endorse and approve the Strategic Plan.

The Strategic Planning Steering Committee has now met four times throughout the summer months and will meet again on August 23rd. Committee members of faculty, staff, and students have engaged in frank and honest dialogue with the consultants, and the upcoming draft framework reflects the collective thinking of the group.  The planning process is an iterative process; many items have been redrafted, re-conceptualized, or in some cases, dropped.  The Steering Committee has driven this process, and I want to thank the members for their diligence, thoughtfulness, and willingness to think on a larger global scale.

The draft framework will be available to the University Community for review in early September.  I will focus my remarks at the Opening Day luncheon on the planning process and how we have arrived at this draft framework. The Opening Day luncheon will be held on the first day of the Fall 2011 semester, Thursday, September 1, 2011, 12:30-1:45 p.m. in the University Commons Ballroom.  Please make every effort to attend and be part of the discussion.

There will be multiple opportunities for all members of the University community to review and provide comments on the draft framework in September and October 2011.

  • John Parras, chair of the Faculty Senate and member of the Strategic Planning Steering Committee, will devote part of the September 13 and 27 meetings of the Faculty Senate to a discussion of the draft framework.  We will also provide updates on the planning process at subsequent Senate meetings.
  • Provost Weil’s Fall Faculty Meeting on September 22 will be devoted to discussing the draft framework.
  • A Town Hall Meeting will be held on September 28, from noon–2 p.m., and again on October 6, from 4–6 p.m., to discuss the initial framework and solicit comments and feedback.
  • The Board of Trustees will review and discuss the draft framework at its meetings on September 23 and November 18.
  • The draft framework will be discussed in department meetings, and in the Deans' Council, Directors’ Council, and with the Student Government Association throughout October 2011.
  • After two subsequent Steering Committee meetings to review comments and feedback from various campus constituents, a draft of the full Strategic Plan will be distributed to the University community by the end of the Fall 2011 semester.

The first months of the Spring 2012 semester will be devoted to finalizing the Strategic Plan, which will eventually go before the Board of Trustees for their approval, hopefully in February or March 2012.

The University has established several electronic mechanisms to provide feedback and comments on the Strategic Plan:

  • The e-mail account Strategic-Plan@wpunj.edu is provided and responses go directly to the President’s Office.  Your feedback will be forwarded to the Strategic Planning Steering Committee for review.
  • An interactive BLOG is being established to provide forums for dialogue among campus constituents.  Instructions on the use of the BLOG will accompany the September 6 dissemination of the draft framework.
  • You may give your comments to the members of the Strategic Planning Steering Committee, who will bring your comments back to the Committee. Committee members are listed below.


Kathleen Waldron


Strategic Planning Steering Committee Members

Kamilah Bayete Rochelle Kaplan
Len Bogdon Joann Lee
Steve Bolyai John Martone
Anne Ciliberti Raza Mir
Kristin Cohen John Parras
Olga Correa Will Pesce
Sandy DeYoung Aaron Van Duyne
Mark Ellis Kathleen Waldron
Stuart Goldstein Edward Weil
William Paterson University
300 Pompton Road, Wayne, New Jersey 07470     973-720-2222     president@wpunj.edu