From Action to Outcomes: Georgia State University is Central to the National Agenda
Georgia State’s urban campus embraces experiential learning, providing students a wealth of practical experiences in Atlanta, Georgia’s capital and the center of the Southeast’s largest and most internationally connected metropolitan area. The university has expanded experiential learning opportunities for students threefold over the past five years. Its students work and learn and enjoy career-boosting access to dynamic urban, corporate, nonprofit and government internship opportunities while they study. This access and this network of organizations offer important and often life changing educational advantages for undergraduate and graduate students. Students and faculty provide organizations and companies throughout metro Atlanta with perspectives drawn from the latest research as well as creative energy that helps foster a dynamic environment of growth and development. This reciprocal relationship defines Georgia State’s well-earned reputation as a campus without borders.
Guided by the 2011 strategic plan, Georgia State has generated national recognition and become a national model for its extraordinary success in helping students from all backgrounds succeed and graduate in record numbers. In 2015, U.S. News & World Report ranked the university No. 5 in the nation for innovation and No. 14 for commitment to undergraduate teaching. The Washington Post called Georgia State “a perpetual laboratory for new ideas on using ‘big data’ to improve higher education,” noting the university’s innovative efforts to keep students on track toward a degree. In a speech at the White House President Barack Obama praised Georgia State for helping more college students find pathways to graduation.
Georgia State has created a vibrant residential student community, offering students rich and varied experiences with a remarkable array of academic, social and cultural living and learning opportunities. New student housing–university and privately owned–offers on-campus living for 6,000 students.
Over the last five years, faculty research has earned prestigious awards and rankings and attained new heights in external funding. In fiscal year 2015, the university received a record $101 million in annual research awards, exceeding the $100 million milestone for the first time in its history.
The strategic plan adopted in 2011 charted a path for the university to follow. Five major goals with supporting initiatives were identified and adopted by faculty, staff and students. The drive to achieve those goals has led to the successes and accolades noted in the separate review of the university’s accomplishments.
This update to the 2011 strategic plan maintains the five original goals, recognizes our recent successes and introduces university-wide initiatives that will build upon Georgia State’s considerable accomplishments and momentum. The university is augmenting its strong record in student success by adding further support to the undergraduate experience, in career planning and in financial decision-making. The use of analytics will expand beyond advisement into a number of areas, from increasing the efficiency of course scheduling to expanding the use of adaptive learning systems. Georgia State will build on its achievements in undergraduate success to strengthen a pipeline for highly qualified students from underrepresented groups to professional careers. Collaborative research that has combined scientists and scholars from various academic fields over the past five years will have further opportunities to flourish through programs such as the Next Generation Initiative. A new arts college that was proposed in the 2011 plan will become a reality and a strong component of the university’s connection to Atlanta. The university’s commitment to globalization remains strong, with plans to enhance collaboration with cities around the globe and multinational companies in Atlanta.
As it enters the next five years of its strategic plan, Georgia State has examined its original goals with a resolve to improve and redouble its efforts to ensure it takes advantage of new information, technologies and opportunities. In what follows, you are presented with the strategic goals for the university, along with those specific initiatives adopted in 2011. Many of the original initiatives have been completed and are now successful ongoing programs. This report provides an update on the status of each original initiative and a presentation of the new and revised initiatives for 2016-2020. Fueled by Georgia State’s commitment to innovation, agility and ingenuity, these initiatives will build upon the success achieved in the first five years of the strategic plan’s implementation, broadening its impact and magnifying its reputation.