No. 131 September 2010

Progress and Performance: Penn State’s Priorities for Excellence: 2009-10 through 2013-14

One change to Penn State’s current strategic plan Priorities for Excellence: The Penn State Strategic Plan 2009-10 through 2013-14 from past plans was the inclusion of a Strategy Implementation Matrix, identifying leadership and starting years for each of the initiatives. At the completion of the first year of the plan, leaders for each of the strategies started in the first year submitted progress reports. Penn State’s Progress and Performance Web site includes highlights and the full progress reports.

Quality Advocates:

Priorities for Excellence: The Penn State Strategic Plan 2009-10 through 2013-14
Strategy 7.8 - Establish and Foster Sustainable Environments

The Environmental Stewardship Key Initiative within Finance and Business has evolved into a University-wide sustainability strategy, with a goal to integrate sustainable behavior throughout the University. This has resulted in operational efficiencies within Finance and Business, Outreach, and research and academics. Steve Maruszewski leads this strategy and will discuss progress and future initiatives.

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Strategic Management for Information Technology

Within Priorities for Excellence: The Penn State Strategic Plan 2009-10 through 2013-14, one of seven university-wide goals is “Use Technology to Expand Access and Opportunities.” That goal includes three strategies in the information technology (IT) realm: to address the robustness and flexibility of the IT infrastructure; to review and adjust the balance between centralized and dispersed IT facilities and services to increase efficiencies; and to maintain and enhance the security and integrity of the IT infrastructure. Kevin Morooney will discuss Penn State’s progress in these areas, as well as how Penn State’s approaches to these initiatives fit with the evolving worldwide technology environment.

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Efficiency and Effectiveness Opportunitues within Higher Education

Two consultants who have done extensive work in higher education identified common patterns of issues and opportunities for increased efficiency and effectiveness across higher education in their presentations at the 2010 conference of the National Consortium for Continuous Improvement in Higher Education (NCCI).

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Spotlight on Quality Improvement: Student Online Early Progress Report

The first semester or two in college can be a learning experience for a student – not just in course content, but in how to study and the quality of work expected in written assignments and exams. Find out how Penn State first addressed this in 1992 and has been improving its approach since then.

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Do You Know? Under-enrolled Sections

Goal 7 in Penn State’s strategic plan addresses controlling costs and generating additional efficiencies. Strategy 7.1 focuses on improving instructional productivity, including tracking and minimizing under-enrolled classes. Do you know the definition of an under-enrolled section?

Cost Saving Idea: Change Fonts

Consider changing your default fonts to use less ink. Century Gothic uses less ink than Arial; a line of Century Gothic 11 contains about the same number of characters as Arial 12.

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Submit your ideas for increased efficiency and effectiveness at Penn State.

Support for Planning, Improvement, and Assessment in Your Unit

The Office of Planning and Institutional Assessment supports the University’s efforts to plan, assess, and improve programs and services. The Office is available, at no charge, to consult with units and use organizational change tools to help units assess their needs, develop strategic plans, improve key processes, and develop collaborative team environments. If you would like to discuss the planning, quality, or assessment needs of your unit with one of our consultants, please contact the Office at 814-863-8721 or e-mail psupia@psu.edu.

The Quality Endeavors newsletter is published several times each semester. If you have any questions or comments about what you read here, or if you would like to suggest items for future newsletters, please contact Louise Sandmeyer, Executive Director of the Office of Planning and Institutional Assessment, at 814-863-8721 or psupia@psu.edu.To read past issues, see the Office's Web site at http://www.psu.edu/president/pia/s/5ztbIb.

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