MSU prepares to launch strategic plan update

STARKVILLE, Miss. — Mississippi State faculty, staff, students and other stakeholders are being invited to contribute to an update of the university’s strategic plan.

MSU President Mark E. Keenum made the announcement Thursday [Nov. 1] in a campus-wide message, which is available at

“I firmly believe that success is not an accident, and that it takes planning, preparation, and execution to achieve. Nearly a decade ago, I returned home to Mississippi State University, and one of my early priorities was to develop a comprehensive strategic plan with extensive input from faculty, staff, students, and alumni,” he wrote.

Since the development and launch of that plan — State of Excellence — the university has achieved record enrollment, expanded its research portfolio, continued to make a difference in the myriad of communities it serves, and initiated the $1-billion Infinite Impact capital campaign, the most successful fundraising effort in Mississippi State history.

“In many ways, we have truly achieved a State of Excellence, and now it’s time to ask, ‘What’s next?’” Keenum wrote.

Judy Bonner, the university’s provost and executive vice president, is leading the update process with members of the President’s Committee on Planning.

“As we begin to update the State of Excellence plan, we will continue to build upon the remarkable foundation it has provided Mississippi State during this recent period of unprecedented success,” she said.

The updated plan will guide the university’s three-part mission of teaching, research and service to 2025, and also help set a course forward to its sesquicentennial celebration in 2028.

A series of town hall meetings has been scheduled for members of the campus community to provide feedback:

— Staff, Nov. 7, 10-11 a.m., Fowlkes Auditorium, Colvard Student Union.

— Faculty, Nov. 14, 10-11 a.m., Fowlkes Auditorium, Colvard Student Union.

— Students, Nov. 19, 4-5 p.m., Old Main Academic Center, Room 1030.

— Open to all (with livestream), Dec. 5, 2-3 p.m., Fowlkes Auditorium, Colvard Student Union.

A session at MSU-Meridian featuring breakout sessions for different groups has been scheduled for Nov. 28. Locations and times will be announced in the coming weeks.

Meetings are also being scheduled at several off-campus locations, including Biloxi, Coastal Research and Extension Center; Raymond, Central Mississippi Research and Extension Center; Stoneville, Delta Research and Extension Center; and Verona, North Mississippi Research and Extension Center. Meeting dates and times are expected to be finalized in the next few weeks.

A second round of town hall meetings is planned for early 2019 with the comment period wrapping up at the end of February.

Students, faculty and staff may also login with their MSU credentials to provide feedback via a secure link at

Comments are also welcome via email at

In addition to Bonner, who serves as chair, members of the President’s Committee on Planning are:

— Greg Bohach, vice president, Division of Agriculture, Forestry and Veterinary Medicine

— Angie Bourgeois, dean, College of Architecture, Art and Design and Dean’s Council representative

— Susan Brooks, chair, Staff Council

— John Buol, president, Graduate Student Association

— Rhonda Carr, MSU-Meridian

— Jan Chambers, Giles Distinguished Professor

— Tim Chamblee, director, Institutional Research and Effectiveness

— Linda Coats, College of Education

— Keith Coble, head, Department of Agricultural Economics

— John Cohen, director, Athletics

— Terry Dale Cruse, head of campus, MSU-Meridian

— Jeff Dean, Academic Department Heads Executive Committee representative

— LaDonne Delgado, University Libraries

— John Dickerson, assistant vice president, Enrollment

— Mayah Emerson, president, Student Association

— Randy Follett, Bagley College of Engineering

— Ra’Sheda Forbes, assistant vice president, Multicultural Affairs

— Regina Hyatt, vice president, Student Affairs

— Gary Jackson, director, MSU Extension Service

— Mary Ann Jones, Robert Holland Faculty Senate

— Jason Lueg, College of Business and assistant vice president intern, Academic Affairs

— Steve Parrott, chief information officer

— John Rush, vice president, Development and Alumni

— Peter Ryan, associate provost, Academic Affairs

— Sid Salter, chief communications officer and director, Public Affairs

— Susan Seal, executive director, Distance Education

— David Shaw, vice president, Research and Economic Development

— Chris Snyder, dean, Shackouls Honors College

— Amy Tuck, vice president, Campus Services

— Robert West, professor, English

— Don Zant, vice president, Finance and chief financial officer

MSU is Mississippi’s leading university, available online at

Thursday, November 1, 2018 - 6:43 am