Welcome to The University of Arizona’s Strategic Plan. We invite you to explore and learn how we are redefining higher education through engagement, innovation, partnerships and synergy.
Imagine a university...
- Where the students are all deeply engaged in their education, integrating knowledge and application in real world experience.
- Where researchers, scholars, and artists uncover new knowledge and innovative ways of knowing and seeing.
- That revolutionizes how it connects with its community and the world, forging novel partnerships to share knowledge and enhance quality of life.
- That achieves this vision through its deep culture of interdisciplinary collaboration and its tradition of access and inclusion, while deepening its regional roots and expanding its global connections.
That university is the University of Arizona:
Watch the video to learn more about our strategic plan that is leading the University in a bold, new direction.
The Never Settle Manifesto
We have never settled. Never will. Because we’re thinkers and doers, always moving forward, upward. We collaborate across disciplines and partner with business and government to innovate. To make the unknown known. We’re a land-grant university that’s transforming science fiction into scientific fact, rising from the sands of the Sonoran Desert in 1885 and developing the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft that will collect dust samples from a near-Earth asteroid in 2020. For those who demand an unrelenting approach to teaching, research, and service, we say: NEVER SETTLE.
The Never Settle Mission Statement
To improve the prospects and enrich the lives of the people of Arizona and the world through education, research, creative expression, and community and business partnerships.
Through cross-cutting innovations distinctive to the University of Arizona, we will expand the student experience through engagement, advance knowledge through innovations in creative inquiry and collaboration, and forge novel partnerships to positively impact our community.
The University of Arizona in Tucson is a land-grant doctoral research university. Our research and development expenditures place us among the nation's top public universities, and we have membership in the Association of American Universities.
We offer a broad array of programs leading to degrees from the baccalaureate through the doctorate. We have a total enrollment of over 40,000 full-time and part-time students. As a land-grant university, we maintain programs in production agriculture, mining, and engineering, and serve the state through our cooperative extension services, technology transfer, economic development assistance, distributed education, and cultural programming.
The University provides distinguished undergraduate, graduate, and professional education; excels in basic and applied research and creative achievement; and promotes activities that advance Arizona's economy.
- Excellence and Integrity
- Collegiality and Openness
- Interdisciplinarity and Sustainability
- Engagement and Societal Impact
- Access and Opportunity
- Diversity, Inclusion, and Shared Decision-Making
The Never Settle Strategic Plan
OUR STRATEGIC PRIORITIES
Design the Arizona experience so that 100 percent of our students have the opportunity to engage in integrating and applying their knowledge through real-world experiential learning
Expand our research and creative inquiry to not only discover new knowledge and create new ideas, but also to innovate new ways of knowing and seeing that will ensure our continued leadership in interdisciplinary scholarship.
Create novel, substantive, and entrepreneurial partnerships with businesses, community groups, and governments to support and enhance our impact on the local and global community.
Build an infrastructure for change that cuts across all elements of our mission and all aspects of our plan, advancing our distinctiveness in interdisciplinarity, diversity, and sense of place while implementing business practices that are effective, efficient, and entrepreneurial.
We will design the Arizona experience so that 100 percent of our students have the opportunity to engage in integrating and applying their knowledge through real-world experiential learning.
Through a learning experience tailored to individual students’ needs, the UA will graduate future leaders who have the skills to apply their knowledge and solve the world’s grand challenges.
STRATEGIES, ACTIONS, AND INITIATIVES
1.Recruit and retain a diverse student body of undergraduate, transfer, and graduate degree-seeking students who represent the state, national and global demographic landscape.
- Leverage merit-and need-based aid.
2.Optimize student access and success.
- Enhance partnerships with high schools and community colleges nationally and internationally.
- Identify students early in their careers who can benefit from programmatic intervention and increase opportunities for academic recovery.
- Improve retention with greater support in advising, learning specialists, coordination, hardware, and software.
- Decrease graduate-level time to degree.
3.Provide students with a dynamic educational experience.
- Promote actions that help us ensure 100 percent student engagement, including the addition of targeted program coordinators, evaluations, and operational support.
- Expand study-abroad options to contribute to the 100 percent student engagement goal.
- Support online course and program development.
4.Graduate individuals who will be sought out by the best employers and postgraduate programs.
- Redesign courses incorporating workshops, new uses of information technology, specialized equipment, and facilities.
- Update classroom facilities to better support an active learning environment.
- Emphasize graduate workforce development in selected master’s programs.
5.Graduate individuals ready to engage in productive lives and personally satisfying work.
- Establish engagement credits in the areas of global, civic, and research activities.
We will expand our research and creative inquiry to not only discover new knowledge and create new ideas, but also to innovate new ways of knowing and seeing that will ensure our continued leadership in interdisciplinary scholarship.
While supporting our values, invite new resources into the University in support of innovative scholarship and research. Prioritize our scholarly and research activities to reflect both the grand challenges we face, and the expectations of our partners for integration and application.
STRATEGIES, ACTIONS, AND INITIATIVES
1.Promote core strengths to address grand challenges.
- Capitalize on existing and growing research and clinical strengths in the UA’s health sciences colleges in Tucson and Phoenix, other clinical entities across the state, and relevant UA colleges.
2.Expand opportunities for interdisciplinary collaboration.
- Increase institutional capacity for interdisciplinary and interprofessional community-engaged scholarship addressing the most urgent needs of Arizona’s diverse citizenry and generating solutions for the public good with global applications.
- Increase large multi-investor, multi-site proposal submissions and awards.
3.Hire, nurture, and retain a diverse, outstanding faculty.
- Create diverse new faculty candidate pools that approximate the national availability of talent.
- Improve faculty retention rates, with a particular emphasis on reducing retention disparities among assistant professors from underrepresented groups.
4.Attract, educate, and engage first-rate doctoral students.
5.Diversify external sources of research support.
- Develop industry expertise to expand public-private partnerships.
- Increase research expenditures.
6.Improve support for the development of major proposals and new initiatives.
- Provide optimum shared research instrumentation infrastructure to advance our capabilities and competitiveness for external research support.
- Create a world-class informatics infrastructure and research program that will revolutionize the capability to extract useful information from massively large sets of data.
- Stabilize and increase the number of research-active faculty in key focus areas.
- Ensure that the capacity of central and college-based research support functions keeps pace with the growing volume and complexity of research, thereby ensuring high-quality grants support as well as critically important compliance with federal and other regulations.
7.Expand strategic external partnerships.
- Attract funding for and investment in start-up companies in Arizona, including University start-ups.
8.Decrease pre-award preparation time and speed post-award access to funds.
9.Improve recognition for interdisciplinary research in promotion and tenure process.
- Enhance our institutional infrastructure base to support research advancement.
We will create novel, substantive, and entrepreneurial partnerships with businesses, community groups, and governments to support and enhance our impact on the local and global community.
The University will share our knowledge, research, and creativity and become more active partner in creative enterprises and innovation to enhance the quality of life for the people of Arizona and the world.
STRATEGIES, ACTIONS, AND INITIATIVES
1.Better adapt our land-grant mission for the 21st century, including a global strategy.
- Modify promotion and tenure guidelines and criteria to recognize engagement and community-based research and knowledge application.
- Develop more and better service-learning and applied-research opportunities for students in Arizona and abroad.
- Position the UA to serve as a preferred consultant in innovating, developing, executing, and assessing critical knowledge-based and capacity development projects worldwide.
2.Expand, develop, and sustain community and industry partnerships, locally and globally, via innovative programs.
- Improve internal business processes to facilitate and leverage community and industry relationships with the University.
- Expand the roles of community and business partners in Academic Program Reviews.
- Provide more opportunities for employers, educators, and families to become more deeply engaged with the University through events, roundtables, and boards.
- Encourage and support more partnerships among internal academic programs and with key external partners.
3.Increase capacity in critical and emerging fields such as education, health sciences, STEM, and cultural competence.
- Better engage business and community partners to expand internship opportunities.
- Define and develop appropriate pathways for competency-based evaluation and credit.
- Determine the best use of technology and other modes of delivering educational and informational content to best engage with learners and communities locally and abroad.
- Significantly grow our educational offerings face-to-face, online, and hybrid, to better address growing needs in critical and emerging fields and to better define the UA’s role in connecting learners to knowledge and to each other.
4.Align output with workforce and knowledge needs, in our region and around the world.
- Expand opportunities to collaborate with schools, agencies, and industry on professional development and certificate programs statewide, nationally, and abroad.
- Coordinate with K-12 school districts to ensure that curriculum adequately prepares students for postsecondary work and that students have clear and preferred pathways to the UA.
- Work with business and community leaders to develop integrated workforce and economic development plans.
We will build an infrastructure for change that cuts across all elements of our mission and all aspects of our plan, advancing our distinctiveness in interdisciplinarity, diversity, and sense of place while implementing business practices that are effective, efficient, and entrepreneurial.
Embedded in the University’s fundamental commitment to knowledge, culture, art, and diverse interdisciplinary work, we will:
- Redesign the University to avoid isolation and specialization in ever-narrowing disciplines.
- Optimize our campus resources and virtual reach to engage students more fully.
- Create engaged University citizens who can apply our resources in pursuit of collective goals.
- Emphasize diversity as part of our institutional culture, at all levels.
- Adopt transparent practices that reward productivity, effectiveness, and entrepreneurship.
STRATEGIES, ACTIONS, AND INITIATIVES
1.Elevate interdisciplinary collaborations.
- Develop promotion and tenure guidelines that ensure that collaborative efforts are identified and valued.
2.Build on and strengthen the diversity of our community.
- Improve campus infrastructure for diversity at all levels, focusing on accountability.
3.Expand global connections and deepen regional roots.
- Invest in interdisciplinary centers that address local issues with global applications.
4.Optimize our physical resources and virtual reach.
- Expand and align IT capacity to meet instructional, research, outreach, and administrative requirements.
- Enhance the UA’s reach through improved and cohesive branding and marketing.
- Develop programs for improving online teaching and course building skills.
5.Implement a business model that rewards productivity, effectiveness, and entrepreneurship.
- Align priorities with opportunities.
- Integrate RCM into the university’s budgeting model to enhance research and instructional performance.
- Align the administrative structure to better support undergraduate and master’s-level programs.