UPG Committee Minutes


Northeastern State University
University Planning Group
Minutes: January 22, 2009 Meeting
****Approved February 12, 2009****

Call to order: 3:32 p.m.

25 members present, 3 absent

The agenda (adjusted) Agenda

  • Mission/Vision/Values Task Group report, recommendations and discussion
  • Implementation Task Group report, recommendations and discussion
  • Update from the steering committee on discussions with Dr. Betz
  • Appointment of new members to the University Planning Group
  • New task groups
  • Approval of Dec 22 Minutes
  • Future Meeting dates and times


The Group agreed to the following actions/decisions. Approval was unanimous with the exception of the first proposal

  • The Mission/Vision/Values Task Group recommendation (attached) was approved, 19 in favor, 2 votes against. The recommendation was to accept the proposal for a "focused mission statement" to be employed in conjunction with the existing full mission statement, and to replace the existing vision statement with a revised statement. The revisions will be forwarded to the President's Council in draft form for review and feedback, and circulated to the NSU community as soon as practical. The task group is continuing to work on Values.
  • The UPG approved the Implementation Task Group proposal that a planning exercise to define Objectives, Objective Priorities, and Implementation Timelines be "pushed" down to the Sub-Unit operational level & that a reporting template be distributed to the colleges and administrative units to document and record actions taken and annual progress relative to the goals of the strategic plan. A full record of the proposal is attached as presented in recommendations 2 and 3 from the task group report. These proposals will be forwarded to the President's Council for review and implementation. This group has completed their group task.
  • The UPG approved a recommendation to form a new task group to address a process for developing Academic Priorities. This proposal was a response to recommendation 1 presented by the Implementation Task Group (attached).
  • The UPG approved a recommendation to form a new task group to focus on information, assessment and accountability. The scope of the group is sufficiently broad to encompass quality management, continuous improvement, and benchmarking.
  • The UPG approved a request for the appointment of Richard Carhart to membership in the UPG.

Other Notes

  • Regarding the Mission and Vision statements, members who voted against the proposal (and any others who wish to comment) are asked to email Christee Jenlink with their observations, concerns and recommendations. It was emphasized that this proposal is in draft form and that we welcome input on improvements and issues from the entire university community. Two comments were recorded at the meeting:
    - Kim Cherry noted that the Mission did not include anything that differentiated our mission from those of other universities. Martin Venneman provided a note reinforcing this concern, also suggesting that the State looks at our mission as being one of addressing the needs of the region and those of Oklahoma.
    - Mark Kinders suggested that the word "creativity" be included in the focused mission statement.
  • Regarding the Implementation proposal, several good observations and recommendations were made. Chuck Ziehr provided input from a meeting with Dr. Betz, indicating three areas that should be considered for increased focused in enhancing the strategic plan: sustainability, leadership and global literacy. This information will be forwarded to the President's Council and will be included in the next UPG agenda. The issue of defining units and subunits will be referred to the members of the President's Council.
  • Dr. Bigbee expressed concern that the new task group focused on information, assessment and accountability may overlap the responsibilities of an existing assessment committee. Mark Giese noted that this should not be an issue other than in coordination. The scope of the UPG task group is significantly broader and coordination will be assured by the presence of common members of both committees (Tom Jackson and Mark Giese).
  • The proposal for adding students to the UPG will be addressed at the next UPG meeting by Liz Cook and Laura Boren.
  • Dave Kern discussed future direction for the UPG, specifically: (1) a process to enhance the strategic plan in the areas of sustainability, leadership and global literacy; and, (2) a process to review each major goal, in order (in order has double meaning; it means that we plan to address in order from 1 on down and also means in order to clarify and "enhance". Please restate.) to enhance and provide clarity to the plan; and (3) the review of major issues that may not be fully addressed in the existing plan.
  • The steering committed will follow-up on the potential assignment of Jym Brittain to the UPG. The objective of adding Jym to the group is to provide expertise and focus on current trends in learning practices, particularly distance learning.

The next scheduled meeting of the UPG is Thursday, February 12, 2009 from 2:30-4:00 p.m.

The meeting was adjourned at 4:37 p.m.

Member Attendees (4 members attended the first half of the meeting): Dr. April Adams, Dr. Janet Bahr, Dr. Dalton Bigbee, Dr. Kay Grant, Ms. Sue Catron, V-P Kim Cherry, Dr. Craig Clifford, Dr. Sheila Collins, Dr. Denise Deason-Toyne, Dr. Dave Kern, Mr. Tim Foutch, Ms. Nancy Garber, Dr. Mark Giese, Mr. Joe Spence, Mr. John Gyllin, Dr. Ed Huckeby, Dr. Chuck Ziehr, Dr. Christee Jenlink, Ms. Christy Landsaw, Dr. Pamela Louderback, Dr. Tim McElroy, Dr. Laura Boren, Dr. Martin Venneman, Liz Cook (NSGA), V-P Mark Kinder

Members Absent: Dr. Doug Penisten, Dr. Andrew Vassar, Dr. Tom Jackson

See exhibits on following pages, including the approved DRAFT Mission/Vision and the Implementation Task Group Proposals that were approved.


Exhibit 1: DRAFT Focused Mission and Vision statements


Founded on the rich educational heritage of the Cherokee Nation, the campuses of Northeastern State University provide our diverse communities a broad array of lifelong learning, undergraduate, graduate, and professional doctoral degree programs. Through quality teaching, research and scholarly activities, service to local and professional communities, and high expectations, our dedicated faculty and staff provide a friendly learning environment where students are prepared to achieve socially responsible career and personal goals for success in a challenging global society.


We prepare students to succeed as socially responsible global citizens. (Note: The proposed focused mission statement does not replace the current mission statement.)


Exhibit 2: Implementation Task Group Recommendations

Recommendation 1 was acted upon by approving the formation of the Academic Priorities Process Review Task Group.
Recommendations 2 and 3 were approved and forwarded to the President's Council for review and feedback.

(Source document: Implementation_Task_Foce.UPG_Report.22Jan2009)


Given the Charge of the Task Force and based upon the operational assumptions defined, the Task Force's recommendations are as follows.

  1. 1. The Implementation Task Force recommends that the UPG undertake defining a process for prioritizing academic and administrative programs and services on all three campuses. The defined process should then be forwarded to the President's Cabinet for review and implementation. The prioritization exercise should be patterned after the process defined in Dickeson, Robert C. 1999. Prioritizing Academic Programs and Services. Published in association with the USA Group Foundation. Jossey-Bass/Wiley & Sons, Inc. San Francisco, CA 94103-1741 and should be undertaken in such a manner that administrative priorities and services are directly linked to the academic priorities and services defined from the process.
  2. 2. The Implementation Task Force recommends that each academic and administrative service Unit receive the Unit Planning Template presented in Appendix 1. This template should be used to: (1) document and report actions already taken to meet the specific Goals and Sub-Goals of the 2007 Charting the Second Century plan; and (2) report annual progress of the Unit in addressing those Goals and Sub-Goals. The administrative structure of each academic and administrative Unit will be responsible for annual assessment of the Unit's and Sub-Units' progress in addressing the Goals, Sub-Goals, Action Statements and Sub-Action Statements of the Charting the Second Century plan.
  3. 3. The Implementation Task Force recommends that a planning exercise to define Objectives, Objective Priorities, and Implementation Timelines be "pushed" down to the Sub-Unit operational level. The outcome from the planning exercise will be a prioritized Five-Year Growth and Development agenda for each Sub-Unit. The exercise is envisioned to build consensus through a decision making process that is fair, transparent, and designed to reinforce collegiality within the Sub-Unit and Unit.

    Any one of several strategic planning approaches can be used to define a Sub-Unit's prioritized, five-year growth and development agenda that will describe Objectives, Objective Priorities, and Implementation Timelines. Several such processes are listed in Appendix 2. The administrative leadership of the Unit should determine the process to be used and should employ that process consistently throughout the Unit.

    One method that has proved effective is described in Appendix 3. The process is designed to develop consensus and - in the absence of defined academic and administrative priorities within the institution - identify a conceptual growth and development agenda for the Sub-Units within academic and administrative Units. The process is not overly time consuming but does require Unit leadership coordination of the effort. It also requires comprehensive Sub-Unit participation in the process. The outcome from the process will be a Five-Year Growth and Development matrix that identifies Objectives, Action Steps, Priorities, and Implementation Timelines. The focus of the described exercise is to enable each Sub-Unit to capitalize upon strengths, address weaknesses, seize identified opportunities, move to accomplish wishes, and enable a straightforward annual assessment of the success of the Sub-Unit in reaching its' individual goals. The administrative leadership of the Unit, in turn, will analyze those annual outcomes and report appropriate actions and Unit achievement in addressing the Goals of the Charting the Second Century as identified in Recommendation 2.

Approved: 16 January 2009
Prepared: 17 January 2009: MRV