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Town Hall held to discuss progress of Brockport's Strategic Plan

by Courtney Deeren - Lifestyles Editor
Tue, Oct 22nd 2019 09:00 pm
President Heidi Macpherson spoke briefly at the Strategic Plan Town Hall. Group leaders each discussed their goals and the progress that's been made.
President Heidi Macpherson spoke briefly at the Strategic Plan Town Hall. Group leaders each discussed their goals and the progress that's been made.

On Wednesday, Oct. 16, the McCue Auditorium hosted a Town Hall meeting to discuss Building a Better Brockport. 

President of The College at Brockport Heidi Macpherson opened the meeting by welcoming the goal group leaders to discuss the five goals of the comprehensive plan. 

Macpherson introduced the first speakers, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Katy Heyning and Vice President for Enrollment Management and Student Affairs Katy Wilson. Heyning and Wilson talked about Goal 1: To be a Great College at Which to Learn.  

Retention rates was featured under section 1.1A: Continuous Improvement. The slide Wilson and Heyning presented stated the “student retention study of first time/ full-time students was completed in Fall 2018. A subcommittee was formed and action plans are in process.” 

Skipping to section 1.1D: Centralized Academic Support Services, Heyning and Wilson discussed EagleSUCCESS and the Academic Success Center (ASC). 

“Since the ASC opened, 2,500 students accessed in-person advisement services, 5,400 student sign-ins for tutoring have been recorded, a 36% increase in tutoring usage compared to prior fall semesters,” according to the presentation. 

In section 1.9: Accreditation, Heyning talked about the accreditation reviews that were passed this year, including University Police getting their accreditation. 

For Goal 2: To be a College Engaged with its Community, Macpherson filled in for the goal group leader, Vice President for Advancement Mike Andriatch. 

“Now, we are a college engaged with our community,” Macpherson said. “And we’ve done a number of different things to be very purposeful and intentional in what we’re trying to do, particularly in reaching out to Rochester and Monroe County.”

Macpherson went on to say people have called Brockport the “best kept secret.” 

“I heard that a lot when I first arrived on campus and it was something I thought ‘we have to shake that off,’” Macpherson said. 

As part of community outreach, Macpherson touched on the Lifelong Learning series. 

“Our Lifelong Learning series has been strengthened,” Macpherson said. “One of the things that people have often said about our strategic plan is that we have a lot that we’re trying to achieve and that’s true. But if you look at the vast majority of what we put into our strategic plan, it’s the things that we were already doing.”

In Goal 2, there was also a section dedicated to discussing mental health and its importance.

“We’ve been talking about doing a mental health clinic for [years],” Macpherson said. “We said, ‘well, okay, we need a little bit more information, we need to figure out how to do this, we have to look into it, doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try.’”

Macpherson explained the mental health clinic was made possible by a partnership with the school district and Oak Orchard Health. 

Vice President of the Division of Administration and Finance, Jim Wall presented Goal 3: To be a Sustainable Institution for the 21st Century. As part of section 3.1 to achieve and then maintain a higher Sustainability Tracking Assessment Rating System (STARS), Wall discussed Brockport’s current and future sustainability. 

“So what we’re doing right now is we’re workshopping the schedule to discuss the current readings with the consultant that helped us,” Wall said. “We have a team of people that are going to go through the various categories and see what can make up another 33 points before the next readings to become a gold member.”

Wall also touched on the renovations that will be happening in several of the academic buildings, including Holmes Hall, Drake Memorial Library and Tower Fine Arts. 

Goal 4: To be a Great College at Which to Work was presented by Vice President for University Relations David Mihalyov. Mihalyov talked about the budget town hall that was held in Spring 2019 and the nine open office hours held, including one at Rochester Educational Opportunity Center (REOC). 

Mihalyov also touched on the leadership summits. 

“We hold leadership summits every year,” Mihalyov said. “One in August and one in January. We try to do it about a week before classes start each semester.” 

At the end of the meeting, there was a question and answer session which garnered a lot of questions about retention versus recruitment and the particulars on the cost of keeping students enrolled as opposed to bringing in new students. 

The next Town Hall meeting will be held in Spring 2020.

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Taken by Vincent Croce:
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