Document outlines focus points for the next five years
The Faculty of Kinesiology and Health Studies (KHS) recently released their 2015-2020 strategic plan. The six-page document outlines the four strategic priorities of the department, along with a breakdown of the program’s objectives and the core values of the KHS.
The aforementioned priorities are as follows: student success; quality programs, academics and research; community connection; and a strong operational foundation. These themselves stem from the five core values that have been listed: excellence, student-centred, collaboration, pride, and integrity.
By their very nature, these plans are a broad stroke interpretation of what the future may hold. Below each of the strategic priorities, four to five objectives are listed. Highlights include the faculty’s statement that one of their objectives is to, “[i]ncrease brand awareness and reputation within the University and the community, and make KHS known as ‘the place to be.’” Another key is the purported commitment to student athletes; in their words, “[to] prepare and support student-athletes to achieve excellence on their respective teams.”
But, in reality, what does this document really mean to the students of the University of Regina? The piece lends itself more to ad copy than it does to tangible policy making. To be fair, this is just a start. All of the faculty’s work over the next five years to achieve their mandate, among the pieces of which is “…[to] continue to strengthen [their] positive presence and relevant impact in our community” should be born from this document.
And, yet, precisely because it does deal in such overt generalities, the strategic plan poses some definite questions that it leaves unanswered, like what a strong operational foundation looks like. We are told that it involves using a model of sustainable growth and sound business practices. What would be far more interesting than a sentence full of buzzwords would be an accompanying section on what has been done thus far. In the same vein, if pride really is a foundational value of the faculty, why are so few Cougars and Rams events well attended? I am aware that these issues are outside of the document’s scope and that broad foundational pieces are the building blocks of policy, but more needs to be written on the subject.
These objectives are common sense. A faculty should want to support their student athletes; same with growing in influence, importance, and allowing itself to support the community in meaningful ways. But how will the faculty do so? That remains to be seen.