Strategic plans are founded on an institution’s guiding statements—Mission, Vision and Values. These guiding statements are intended to provide direction for a fairly long time. By contrast, the activities—Strategic Goals and Action Steps as we have named them—are meant to provide direction only into the near future, perhaps five to seven years. They are more fluid and more specific, lending themselves to revision or completion as the University moves forward. These short-term and long-term elements are described below.
The Mission Statement
Mission Statements describe the broad purposes of a University. The statement should reflect why the University exists, describe the students we serve, and define what we do that distinguishes Northeastern Illinois University from other universities. A Mission Statement, as differentiated from a Vision Statement, is grounded in the present but also provides the framework for the future.
The Vision Statement
A Vision Statement is a brief statement and, as the name implies, communicates the future direction of the University. The Vision Statement should be optimistic and dynamic and should reflect the aspirations of the University. The Vision Statement should be a consensus of the University community; all students, faculty and staff should see their place in the future of the University and should be excited to be a part of that future.
Statement of Values
Prior to the start of formal strategic planning, the University community developed a Statement of Values to help define how we interact with each other as an educational community. The Values were prominently displayed during the inauguration ceremony and have been a part of several University events since then.
As a public university, we share in common these values and believe that integrity, excellence, access to opportunity,diversity, community, and empowerment through learning define our culture and priorities. We believe that these values should guide how we interact with each other–both within and throughout the University and outside the University.
Strategic Goals and Action Steps
The University has identified six Strategic Goals as the most critical objectives in meeting our Mission and achieving our Vision. These Goals, and the Action Steps accompanying each Goal, will be used to establish our work and budget priorities each year and will serve as the framework to determine the success of the University. Over the next few months, the Action Steps will evolve into a more detailed work plan that will be University-wide, encompassing the work activities in all departments and units.