Published November 6, 2012
At my State of the University address last Friday, I had the pleasure of speaking with our university and community about the current challenges and opportunities facing our university. I remarked that I see this as a vital window of opportunity for the university as we take our UB 2020 vision to the next level.
We have weathered several challenges together over the past few years, and we have emerged from these challenges stronger than ever. After several difficult budget years, we finally have the resources we need to make our mark in truly distinctive ways.
The progress and momentum we are enjoying right now are the product of our thoughtful, difficult, and productive work over many years. Because of these efforts, not only are we poised to begin the next evolution of UB 2020, we are fully prepared to take another big leap forward. When we make that leap, we will be much closer to our ultimate goal: to be recognized as one of our nation’s most distinctive, and most relevant, research universities.
For us to build on our momentum and realize UB 2020, we all need to have a shared sense of vision and purpose. At UB, we excel at thinking and partnering across the disciplines. Now we need to go a step beyond: we need to think holistically, as one university, about our priorities and our impact. We need to focus on what unites us under a common purpose. We need to consider what makes us truly distinctive, nationally and globally, and we need to think creatively about how we capture these distinctive qualities and align them for maximum impact.
I view this as the natural evolution of UB 2020, building upon the collaborative, university-wide model that identified our Strategic Strengths. What I am proposing is not a new round of strategic planning, but rather a process for taking our good work to the next level so that we can truly set ourselves apart from our peers, and so that we can lead with even greater impact.
I have charged Provost Zukoski with focusing and leading this conversation at a campus level. Over the next five months, our campus community will think together about the course of the next five years. Together, we will map our next steps to propel our vision forward. Provost Zukoski will be communicating with the campus community soon about our collective next steps.
I invite all of you to participate in this process, and I urge you to lend your voices to this dialogue. Your input and engagement will be essential, as they have been throughout this UB 2020 process.