Beyond Boundaries Frequently Asked Questions

When did the strategic planning process begin?
The strategic planning process began in January 2012, when President Scott R. Pilarz, S.J., named it a priority in his inaugural Presidential Address. During spring 2012, Father Pilarz participated in 17 listening sessions with faculty, staff and students, who discussed Marquette’s strengths, success, challenges and areas of distinction. In May 2012, university leadership identified five strategic themes based on the campus-wide feedback gathered from the 17 listening sessions.

In September 2012, a Strategic Plan Coordinating Committee comprising faculty, staff and students was convened to represent the diverse range of university perspectives. The committee was charged with developing a process that invited campus and community involvement and allowed for feedback, input and affirmation of the proposed themes, goals and objectives. The committee was also charged with developing a comprehensive environmental scan of Marquette’s internal environment and gathering observations and data to help establish the trends and external influences that will affect the future of Catholic higher education.

Extensive feedback on the strategic themes was gathered from faculty, staff, students and alumni, and a revised set of six themes was shared in January 2013. The President’s Strategic Planning Workshop, a first for the university, was held Jan. 30, 2013, and brought together nearly 500 faculty, staff and students for discussion and idea generation about potential strategic plan goals stemming from the six strategic themes.

In March 2013, the Strategic Plan Coordinating Committee delivered a comprehensive environmental scan to university leadership that was used as context to develop draft goals — one for each strategic theme. These goals were discussed and revised with input from academic and administrative university leadership and the Strategic Plan Coordinating Committee. Measurable objectives were identified to help execute each of the goals given internal realities and external trends.

In April 2013, a draft version of the plan was approved by the University Academic Senate, Dean’s Council and University Leadership Council.

Beyond Boundaries: Setting the Course for Marquette’s Future was approved by the Marquette University Board of Trustees in May 2013.

A complete timeline of the strategic plan development and implementation process is available here.

Where can I access the full strategic plan?
The full strategic plan can be found here. A one-page framework that identifies the vision, mission, strategic themes, goals and objectives can be found here.

Where can I see progress that’s being made on the strategic plan?
The six goal stewards are developing progress reports every two months to chart the implementation of tactics under their specific goal. Goal steward progress reports and additional context about metrics and major initiatives can be found in the “Progress Reports” section of the strategic plan website.

Who is leading strategic plan implementation?
Implementing the strategic plan is the work of responsibility of all members of the campus community. To help guide the process, six strategic plan goal stewards have been appointed to link the goals and objectives to university operations. They will work collaboratively with the vice president of planning and colleagues across campus to gather input from key stakeholders to clarify and refine the objectives and tactics under their goal, identify metrics to track goal progress, begin implementation of one tactic during fiscal year 2014, and issue a progress report on their assigned goal every two months. Stewards were selected with the knowledge that, in the performance of their normal leadership duties, they are naturally in a position to focus on one of the themes and goals. In selecting this model to guide implementation, the goals of the strategic plan will be integrated into the day-to-day life and operations of the university.

How can I get involved?
Deans and vice presidents have been asked to ensure their unit strategic plans align with the university-wide strategic plan so that we are all moving forward together. Individuals should work to ensure their professional goals and responsibilities are contributing to the objectives set forth in the strategic plan by asking: “How does my everyday work achieve the goals of the university-wide strategic plan?” and “What have I done today to bring us closer to achieving our vision for Marquette University?”

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Beyond Boundaries

Branded Strategic Plan Document CoverApproved by Marquette's Board of Trustees in
May 2013, Beyond Boundaries: Setting the Course for Marquette's Future builds on the bold spirit that has always blessed Marquette University. In seeking to carry forward this tradition today, the university community collectively developed a clear vision of the qualities that must distinguish the Marquette of tomorrow. This strategic plan website was established as a vehicle for the campus community to learn about the strategic plan development and implementation process.