Strategic Planning at James Madison University

Wilson Hall
“Knowledge will forever govern ignorance; and a people who mean to be their own governors must arm themselves with the power which knowledge gives.”- James Madison

This JMUPlans website provides direct access to all of the information you need to understand the planning process and plans that guide our university. If you have any questions about this site or the planning process, please contact Cindy Chiarello at

Planning at JMU

As a public university, JMU carries a great deal of responsibility. Not only in light of Madison’s words, but also because the public places a great trust in us. To demonstrate how seriously we take that trust, assembled here are data demonstrating our commitment to learning, growth and our commitment to serve the Commonwealth.

At ‘JMU Plans’ you will find documentation about how the university plans by reviewing and exploring current and future challenges and opportunities, collaborating with various individuals and groups that care about JMU’s future, crafting strategic initiatives to achieve our mission, and carefully evaluating our performance.

All of our planning focuses squarely on our mission, vision and values. They are at the heart of all we do and who we are.


We are a community committed to preparing students to be educated and enlightened citizens who lead productive and meaningful lives.


To be the national model for the engaged university: engaged with ideas and the world.


Academic Quality: We are dedicated to exemplary learning experiences because they are the essence of our mission.
Community: We thrive when we collaborate, respect and serve others, and appreciate our interconnectedness.
Diversity: We strive to be an inclusive community that values the richness of all individuals and perspectives.
Excellence: We seek to be innovative and to perform at the highest levels.
Integrity: We pursue ethical reasoning because it is essential to meaningful citizenship.
Student Focus: We provide experiences that challenge and support students. 

Who We Are

(This purpose narrative helps guide our planning)

James Madison University is a community of higher learning that reaches beyond the pursuit of instruction, developing well-rounded citizens who make a real difference in the world. We are continually building a culture marked by strong relationships, engagement, teaching excellence, ethical reasoning, discovery and a commitment to the liberal arts and sciences. Students often describe their experience as one where we “hold the door open” for each other. We see this as both literal – reflecting a warm and welcoming community – and figurative, where we open opportunities for our students by fostering the cultivation of ideas in and beyond the classroom. We offer the benefits and resources of large scale and mass while providing close relationships between students and faculty – the benefits of big with a small feel. We will be the national model of the engaged university because we believe engagement is a critical pathway to student enlightenment. As a reflection of our namesake, our most important intended outcome is to help create high-character citizen-leaders who contribute to improving the human condition.

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