Top Priorities & Goals

The top priorities of the College are identified as a selected set of the strategic initiatives identified as the goals of this strategic plan. Although all of the initiatives are important aspects of this plan, this selected set represents the most critical and salient priorities of the College at the big-picture level.

Achieve distinction in transformative scholarship advancing the liberal arts with faculty excellence in path-breaking research and creative activity.

Key Characteristics

  • High-impact transformative scholarship in liberal arts disciplines as path-breaking research addressing societal grand challenges, raising the College’s research profile and visibility.
  • Recognition at national and international levels of research conducted by faculty and students as a group of stellar scholars contributing new knowledge and setting new standards.
  • Creative activity of the highest caliber in design and the arts signified by peer-reviewed works (e.g., juried exhibitions, distinguished performances, award-winning works).
  • Impactful contributions of a diverse faculty to interdisciplinary research and creative activity involving disciplines within the College, across the University, and with external partners.
  • Demonstrable leadership of initiatives at the intersection of liberal arts and other disciplines across the University. 
  • A robust portfolio of grants, contracts, and commissions that advance the national and international competitiveness of the College and its disciplines and contribute to the reputation of Purdue University

Strategic Initiatives

  • Initiate a Research Academy for as a vehicle for outstanding and diverse faculty and those with successful grants to mentor and provide guidance to junior and newer faculty.
    • Facilitate high-impact research and creative activity to improve the understanding of the human condition and address society’s most important challenges; and
    • Mentor faculty to nurture a culture of stellar research and outcomes, faculty recognition at national and international levels with inducted memberships, increased grant activity, and advanced national program rankings (for disciplines that are ranked nationally).
  • Create a Center for Arts and Humanities to provide support for a diverse faculty to submit their creative works nationally and internationally, funding for exploratory creative activities, and cross campus collaborations.
    • Focus on exceptional scholarship and creative activity, to complement the Research Academy, and garner national and international visibility and recognition.
  • Continue to administer and assess the Aspire and Engage faculty support programs, which invest in the research enterprise of the College.
    • Continue internal grant programs and seek external grant opportunities for enhancing research in the social sciences, humanities, and the arts. Support departments to recognize and write award applications for scholarship.
  • Work to establish new resources and procedures for supporting research facilitated by talented and experienced staff with specialties in CLA disciplines to help with pre-award and link to Sponsored Program Services and to assist in seeking extramural funds.
  • Continue to grow communication and connections between faculty and grant opportunities by incentivizing grant-writing—course releases, financial support, internal seed grants for exploratory research—and follow through with faculty for successful grant efforts.
  • Explore creating a college-level interdisciplinary administrator position to connect CLA with other colleges at the University.
  • Organize symposia, competitions, and workshops in collaboration with other colleges that may lead to collaborative projects.
  • Promote new initiatives in Digital Humanities, and create infrastructure and training in new forms of digital expression (neurocognitive, virtual/augmented reality, immersive media).

Achieve distinction in transformative scholarship advancing the liberal arts with faculty excellence in path-breaking research and creative activity.

Key Characteristics

  • Teaching and learning of exceptional value, exemplified by outcomes, quality, and affordability, receiving acknowledgment, citation, recognition, and emulation by national peers, signifying the College represents a premiere program for liberal arts study and innovative educational models.
  • A robust and diverse collegiate enrollment with strong cores of meritorious students in all disciplines preparing for job-readiness, progressively successful careers, engaged citizenship, advanced study, and leadership in their careers and communities.
  • Strong critical thinking, analytical, integrative, collaborative, and leadership skills developed by students positioning them to be highly competitive in their chosen career paths.
  • The presence and participation of students from all walks of life with particular attention to underrepresented populations.
  • Educational enrichment marked by high quality experiential learning and high-impact learning opportunities outside the classroom (e.g., internships, undergraduate research, honors programs, multicultural programs, study-abroad and other international experiences, and co-curricular activities).

Strategic Initiatives

  • Continue to support and to evaluate grants and programs—including INNOVATE, 2Teach, Cornerstone, Degree+, and Degree in 3— and explore the possibility of additional innovative programs.
  • Develop and implement a plan for recruiting undergraduate students (particularly underrepresented minority students -URM) corresponding with changing demographics and expand mentoring programs.
  • Pursue and strengthen College and departmental collaboration with University’s recruitment efforts, and facilitate access, affordability, and diversity with expanded financial aid packages.
  • Further develop high-quality experiential learning programs—including internships, undergraduate research and conference participation, study-abroad programs, and courses in other languages that advance intercultural competencies.
    • Further develop and offer high-quality educationally substantive internships (national and international) for students, support Job-Ready internship awards, and offer workshops on how to prepare for and succeed in internship and career search.
    • Create and offer courses that focus on personal and professional development with an emphasis on how to prepare for various career paths.
    • Encourage departments to offer a diverse learning community, particularly in collaboration with the Honors College.
    • Create an undergraduate research community and expose students to faculty research through seminars and participation in undergraduate research conferences.
    • Increase study abroad opportunities integrated into curricula; support with financial assistance for diverse groups of students.
  • Continue to develop grants such as INNOVATE, 2Teach, and similar programs for teaching purposes allowing departments to implement innovative, effective, and efficient educational formats, and/or re-envision courses or curricula.
  • Institute teacher training workshops and resources, working together with Center for Instructional Excellence, to ensure excellence in pedagogy and learning outcomes and to promote, support, and showcase how research can inform innovative educational models.
  • Offer a variety of courses in other languages and cultures that attune students to a diverse multicultural, globalized world, emphasizing intercultural competencies.

Advance graduate education that is synergistic with faculty excellence in research and creative activity, attracting national and worldwide recognition.

Key Characteristics

  • Nationally and internationally competitive graduate program foci that are synergistic with areas of faculty research and creative activity with widely recognized accomplishments.
  • Recognition of the College as a welcoming and supportive venue for a diverse mix of high-caliber students in all programs, pursuing research and creative activity along with personal and professional growth.
  • Competitive interdisciplinary programs, promoted by strengths in liberal arts disciplines, in program depth, breadth, and quality.
  • Competitive financial support for graduate students in each program to ensure recruitment, retention, and timely graduation of a diverse body of high-caliber students.
  • Preparation of graduates for varied careers with strong track record for career advancement.

Strategic Initiatives

  • Ensure sustained peer-competitive levels of graduate assistantships and fellowship packages, and design a postdoctoral fellowship program promoting recruitment of a diverse body of graduate students. Expand resources for peer-competitive graduate assistantships and postdoctoral fellowship programs to promote recruitment of graduate students commensurate with academic achievement and representing diversity.
  • Develop and implement a College-level program geared toward identifying strategic and cluster hires of underrepresented minority faculty (URM) for both tenure-track and clinical positions, thus increasing the representation of URM faculty to serve as role models for career development of URM graduate students. The may include cluster hires and professors of practice.
  • Improve faculty mentoring in step with the varied needs of MA, MS, MFA, and PhD student development in research, scholarship/publications, grant-writing, creative activity, and careers. Explore support by recruiting professors of practice and/or incentivizing a range of career exposures.
  • Implement and expand research assistantship programs at the College-level to support research activities and increase funding for the PROMISE program.
  • Further develop College-based on-line programs for graduate education and training cultivating the opportunities in diverse areas serving students with diverse backgrounds.

Promote engagement with public and private stakeholders, advancing the role of liberal arts in the contemporary spirit of a land-grant institution.

Key Characteristics

  • Engaged partnerships with public and private organizations in service of the public good.
  • Active role of the College across the University, and in partnerships with selected external constituencies, raising the value of liberal arts contributions for strategic engagement initiatives.
  • Experiential learning opportunities that supplement academic programs (e.g., formally organized internships, service learning programs, multicultural experiences, public service engagements) consistent with mission of a land-grant institution.
  • Influential contributions toward the public good, upholding the values of diversity and inclusion with leadership roles in academia, research institutes, and other professional and service organizations.
  • Life-long learning programs that provide affordable access to worldwide audiences addressing the current and emerging needs of society in the contemporary spirit of a land-grant institution.

Strategic Initiatives

  • Designate a faculty member at the College-level as an administrative leader for engagement efforts focusing on generating awareness, creating opportunities, rewarding and recognizing engagement work, building a diverse engagement community, and working closely with the University Office of Engagement.
  • Expand the College promotion and tenure (P&T) guidelines. Acknowledge, accommodate, and address engagement as a distinct performance area, including recognition for faculty contributions to uphold and advance the values of diversity and inclusion in professional and community organizations.
  • Reward engagement with awards and grants that encourage faculty, graduate students, and staff to develop partnerships across the University and with external constituents and recognize these accomplishments.
  • Provide time, funding support, and contemporary technologies to faculty working in engagement to address diverse regional, national and international audiences and to develop new courses to bring engagement work to undergraduate and graduate students.
  • Create a mentoring program for matching junior faculty interested in engagement work with faculty mentors to help with the promotion and tenure process, focusing on their scholarship of engagement.

Champion diversity and inclusion integrated in all aspects and endeavors of the College, internally and externally, as a model for a land-grant university.

Key Characteristics

  • Exhibit a stellar record of diversity and inclusion with equal access and opportunity—for U.S. domestic as well as international populations—in each discipline, signifying the College’s social, cultural, and intellectual richness.
  • Promote consistent and regular messaging and commitment toward diversity, equity, and inclusion directed by the Dean and administrative leadership team drawing the attention of faculty, staff, students, and administrative units.
  • Recognize individual and collective successes of faculty, staff, and students that are celebrated internally and externally.
  • Provide an outstanding climate and culture of the College’s integrated diversity and inclusion with equal access and opportunity for the success of all viewed as a model for land-grant institutions.

Strategic Initiatives

  • Accelerate growth and integration of diversity and inclusion into programs and departmental culture and climate, particularly for underrepresented populations that are sustained among faculty, staff, and students and are consistent with the purpose and value of a major research land-grant university of global prominence.
  • Provide resources to build greater capacity for diversity and inclusion initiatives in order to publicly track and benchmark College, departmental, and administrative activities in diversity and inclusion, conduct climate surveys, and improve, develop, and implement programs/curricula.
  • Leverage relationships with on-campus cultural centers (AAARCC, BCC, LCC, LGBTQC, and NAECC), and work with interdisciplinary programs in the College to recruit, retain, and support diverse students, faculty, and staff.
  • Advance cluster hires for faculty, particularly for underrepresented populations, working with department heads to determine the framing of these hires.
  • Significantly increase the investments in the Summer Research Opportunities Program (SROP) to expand opportunities for diverse students to prepare for graduate study.
  • Develop and implement plans for recruiting diverse undergraduate and graduate students in collaboration with communities, responding to changing demographics.

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