Strategic planning at YSU

By Amanda Tonoli


Youngstown State University will soon develop a new strategic plan, university President Jim Tressel announced Monday.

The university’s last strategic plan was developed in 2011.

During the State of the University Address, Tressel unveiled the new strategic planning process, led by a group of faculty, staff, students and administrators, that is underway across campus.

“Our new strategic planning process will ensure that we continue to strive to reach even higher in ensuring that our students are successful on campus and in their careers,” Tressel said.

The planning, he said, should be all-inclusive.

“As we think about what it is we need to do going forward, first and foremost we have to decide to agree that everyone has to be involved in the discussion,” he said. “The university isn’t individual; the university is a collective group.”

Getting ideas from the collective group makes the innovation more powerful, he added.

“Innovation, our plans for the future, is powerful when the ideas from every level make their way to the decision making,” Tressel said. “We have to make sure we move forward in strategic planning for 2020 and beyond, that we get input from everywhere, that we get real data, that we get verifiable data to help us make good decisions. Because decisions have to be made ... Our students are looking to us to help create their future. Our region is looking to us to help create their future.”

The 18-member Strategic Planning Organization Team will design the planning process, gather information and input and guide implementation.

“We aspire to develop a strategic vision that facilitates positive change, builds on our current strengths, improves the culture of community, and positions YSU to be more successful in the face of a constantly changing higher education landscape,” Tressel said.

A new website,, provides further details, including links to articles and books focusing on higher education, academics and socio-economics. The site also includes an online method to “Join in the Conversation” and give input on the planning process.

In other business, Tressel announced the following milestones met: the incoming freshman class’s record high grade-point-average is 3.35; the largest incoming freshman class is about 2,500 students; more than 300 freshman students will soon join the Honors College making its student count about 1,200; an increased retention rate is about 74 to 75 percent; and university housing is at capacity.

Classes for the 2018-19 school year begin Wednesday.

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