January 18, 2019
Dear Members of the UNE Community:
Over the course of our recent strategic planning process, I gained deeper insight into the nature of our unique institution from faculty members, students, professional staff, alumni, trustees, and supporters of UNE all over the nation. Several qualities of the University stood out: We embrace hard problems. We are nimble. We defy easy classification. We break stereotypes.
I came to understand that the strong values grounding our community derive in part from our precursor institutions: St. Francis College, Westbrook College, and the New England College of Osteopathic Medicine. The most important of these values, and UNE’s primary purpose, is preparing students to lead successful careers and fulfilling lives. This is our raison d’être — our fundamental mission. It informs everything we do. Indeed, we welcome students from a wide range of backgrounds and experiences, and we empower them to dramatically transform themselves. They emerge as well-prepared, engaged, and passionate leaders, poised to make their marks on a rapidly changing world. In the process, working closely with our faculty and professional staff, they are transforming not only their own lives but society and our very planet.
Working together, our community engaged in a highly inclusive and participatory strategic planning effort. The resulting plan, Our World, Our Future: 2018–2023, articulates UNE’s collective mission, vision, and core values. It describes six high-level priorities and their respective key goals. Each goal will be operationalized with specific initiatives and associated metrics, deliverables, and timelines. Our plan is specific enough to serve its guiding function but broad enough to allow us to capitalize on unforeseen emerging opportunities as they arise.
Too often, strategic plans are forgotten as soon as they are completed, tucked away neatly on a shelf. In contrast, this plan, created through the efforts of so many people, now exists at the center of our day-to-day operations. It serves as a living document that guides our efforts and against which we measure our progress. We work each day to fulfill its promise.
I am very proud of our community’s plan and equally proud of the process we followed to develop it. We now devote ourselves to working together to realize our exciting vision of UNE’s future.
James D. Herbert