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Institutional Priorities

In the Summer of 2022, Officer in Charge Dr. Phil Neisser charged the Middle States Steering Committee to work together with the campus community to develop and propose strategic priority areas that advance SUNY Potsdam’s mission and serve as a bridge until a new President is installed and a new strategic plan is developed.

The Steering Committee launched an inclusive process to seek campus input and participation to help identify SUNY Potsdam's Institutional Priorities. Among the various activities completed by the group during this process was a planning retreat with representatives from a wide variety of campus stakeholders, such as faculty, staff, students, and union leadership, were invited and participated.  In addition to the retreat, a survey was conducted and other key stakeholder groups, such as Faculty Senate and President’s Council, were consulted. 

The result of this collaborative process was the identification of five strategic priority areas. The priority areas are listed below along with a brief description of each. Below each area are examples of actions being implemented across campus that align with each priority area. The examples of actions are not exhaustive, and other actions can and will be taken that align to each of these priorities.

Fall 2022 - Summer 2024

With a steadfast commitment to our mission, our institutional student learning outcomes, and the Potsdam Pledge, SUNY Potsdam adopts the following strategic priorities. These will recognize the College’s responsibility to foster a diverse, inclusive and just campus environment that offers an appropriate range of strong and relevant academic and co-curricular programs and provides good stewardship to the financial resources with which we have been entrusted by the people of New York State.

  • Priority 1: Financial Stability & Analysis
  • Priority 2: Enrollment & Retention
  • Priority 3: Academic Programs & Planning
  • Priority 4: Connecting with the Community
  • Priority 5: Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging

Priority 1: Financial Stability & Analysis

SUNY Potsdam will put in place the policies, procedures and expertise needed to execute transparent data-informed financial decision-making and efficient resource allocation.

  1. Develop a five-year budget realignment plan to reflect the College’s strategic priorities.
  2. Institutionalize financial benchmarking and assessment processes to enhance accountability and excellence; establish and track measurable goals and indicators of achievement.
  3. Implement a budget development process that links spending decisions to strategic planning.
  4. Support a heightened focus on improving efficiencies across all divisions.
  5. Launch the leadership phase of a comprehensive fundraising campaign to increase and expand donor and volunteer support.
  6. Expand ancillary revenue programs.
  7. Establish criteria by which new and existing initiatives, programs, and projects are evaluated for costs, benefits, and alignment with the five year budget realignment plan.

Priority 2: Enrollment & Retention

SUNY Potsdam will recruit and retain a diverse and motivated student body—starting with strategic enrollment management for both undergraduate and graduate programs, backed by effective marketing and communications campaigns and a campus-wide culture of outreach and caring—as we support every student on their path to graduation, through effective academic support services, engaging student life, and high-quality applied learning opportunities for both personal and professional growth.

  1. Invest in a local and regional comprehensive marketing campaign.
  2. Grow enrollment at all levels to an overall goal of 3,000 students.
  3. Create the campus infrastructure by which we can leverage K-12 summer programs, such as Creative Arts Camp and Crane Youth Music, and K-12 school partnerships to build a pipeline for future SUNY Potsdam students.
  4. Increase retention of students at all levels.
  5. Develop strategic retention initiatives aimed at high-risk students.
  6. Evaluate application processes and policies to ensure that barriers are removed in the application processes.
  7. Review and promote articulation agreements to create efficient pipelines from community colleges.
  8. Continue to offer and grow student activities that foster belonging, connectedness and opportunities for students to develop meaningful relationships with their peers.
  9. Enhance personal development and encourage involvement in leadership opportunities.
  10. Leverage Potsdam College Foundation scholarships and other funding to support retention initiatives.

Priority 3: Academic Programs & Planning

SUNY Potsdam will foster innovative, highly relevant academic programs that prepare students to lead both in their careers and in their communities, by aligning our degree and non-degree programs in the liberal arts, sciences, education, performing arts and professional studies with local, state and national workforce needs.

  1. Ensure relevance of all academic programs through ongoing curriculum development and program review.
  2. Financially invest in programs that consistently attract students to SUNY Potsdam.
  3. Identify, pursue and promote opportunities for new innovative, high-quality, distinct and compelling programs with capacity to grow enrollments.
  4. Increase capacity in existing programs identified as having high demand.
  5. Promote and emphasize the use of student learning outcomes, academic support and retention.
  6. Develop and integrate career preparation opportunities to include internships, international education, microcredentials, and other activities that build skills necessary to secure gainful employment in the marketplace.

Priority 4: Connecting with the Community

SUNY Potsdam will drive community engagement by leveraging the combined power of our faculty and staff expertise, student interest, entrepreneurial activities, dedicated alumni and supporters, and expanded partnerships with businesses and non-profit organizations, to serve the North Country and expand revenue streams for the College.

  1. Develop and promote credit and non-credit bearing experiences that meet the region’s recreational, social, artistic, and professional development needs.
  2. Engage the local community in events and opportunities that expose them to available program offerings.
  3. Promote and encourage positive perceptions of the College in the local and regional community.
  4. Increase the number and scope of collaborations with local community members and organizations.
  5. Identify and work with stakeholders and local partners to promote sustainability, climate resiliency, and environmental protection on and off campus.

Priority 5: Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging

SUNY Potsdam will continue to affirm our commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging by fostering, empowering, and sustaining a campus community that is built on trust and a universal commitment to respect for all.

  1. Continue to develop and enhance programs and services designed to improve recruitment, retention and success of both students and employees from historically underrepresented and marginalized communities.
  2. Reward, recognize and celebrate faculty, staff, and student achievements.
  3. Ensure that students, faculty, and staff from diverse backgrounds are integral to campus planning processes.
  4. Foster pride in the campus community by developing a distinctive experience for all students, faculty, staff, and visitors.
  5. Create and support learning, work and living environments that fully welcome and support diversity, equity, and inclusion.