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Mission: We are a community committed to preparing students to be educated
and enlightened citizens who lead productive and meaningful lives.
Vision: To be the national model for the engaged university: engaged with ideas and the world.
Values: Academic Quality, Community, Diversity, Excellence, Integrity and Student Focus

We believe in the relevance and importance of the liberal arts and sciences and are committed to maintaining strong student/faculty interaction. Through our distinguished faculty and staff, we offer academically challenging programs, providing an exemplary undergraduate education and distinctive graduate studies while maintaining accountability for learning through effective assessment.

University Goals

Goal 1A: The university will foster student success by providing a holistic learning environment focused on furthering intellectual development as well as education in areas such as teamwork, leadership, collaboration, interpersonal skills, entrepreneurship, ethics, citizenship, sustainability and service.

Goal 1B: The university will provide high-impact learning experiences such as undergraduate research, service learning, internships and study abroad programs in a climate that fosters intellectual engagement in and outside the classroom.

Goal 1C: The university will recruit and retain high-quality faculty and staff through providing competitive salaries, other compensation and opportunities for professional development.

Goal 1D: The university will be a national leader in the assessment of learning.

Goal 1E: The university will develop programs that are responsive to the needs of the Commonwealth, nation, and the world.

Major Initiatives

Further Enhance High-Quality Academic Programs

Establish the Madison Honors College. The JMU Honors Program is a rich educational opportunity for our students and is recognized nationally for its innovative curricula. We will further this success by elevating the program to college status by academic year 2016-17.

Assure Faculty Success. Faculty members are the core of JMU’s value proposition, and to help assure their success, we will:

  • Recruit and retain high-quality faculty to maintain a 16:1 student-to-faculty ratio.
  • Provide competitive salaries, other compensation and professional development compared to peer institutions.
  • Double the number of faculty holding Teaching Excellence Fellowships, named chairs and professorships by 2020.
  • Continue to align faculty hiring, professional development, recognition and rewards with the university’s mission and vision.

Strengthen Leadership in Cross-Disciplinary Collaboration. JMU already is known as an institution where faculty teach and do research spanning disciplinary boundaries. To further these efforts, we will launch a new set of cross-disciplinary pedagogical initiatives seeking to integrate engaged learning, civic engagement and community engagement beginning in academic year 2014-15.

Make a Positive and Measurable Impact on Society

Consolidate Leadership in Assessment. The JMU Center for Assessment and Research Studies already is a nationally recognized leader in assessing learning outcomes. We will further expand those efforts by designing and implementing processes that assess the connection between a JMU experience and citizens who lead productive and meaningful lives, by academic year 2016-2017. As a byproduct, we will gather assessment data demonstrating that our graduates are known for possessing the following traits:

  • Ethical. The Madison Collaborative: Ethical Reasoning In Action is expanding to reach every sector of the curriculum and co-curriculum. Continue this expansion to ensure integration of the Eight Key Questions and their application in the General Education program and upper division courses of all majors by academic year 2016-2017.
  • Entrepreneurial and Innovative. Begin a campus-wide initiative to coordinate existing efforts across disciplines and develop new opportunities to teach and learn the problem-solving skills required in the new economy by academic year 2015-16.
  • Collaborative and Effective Working in Teams. Continue to develop and implement team-based learning experiences in all majors.

Thoughts about this Core Quality

One of the things JMU President Jon Alger learned on his listening tour during the summer and fall of 2012 is that the relationship between the faculty and students at JMU is the primary currency of our success. The importance of those faculty and student relationships was also emphasized during the Madison Future Commission town hall meetings. Our alumni also emphasized that the culture of JMU that fosters individual faculty and student relationships must be a JMU asset into the future. In drafting a core quality to that end, the Academics Committee of the Madison Future Commission wrote: “JMU is a community committed to academic rigor and teaching excellence across all programs. We safeguard sustainable high quality academics through intentional and strategic planning.” The University Planning Team adapted that into the first core quality. That was then broadened by the university’s senior leadership team, resulting in two academics-related core qualities to reflect the importance of academics overall. So, this core quality addresses academic quality in terms of our excellence in programs – as a context for the aforementioned relationships - while the next core quality represents our commitment to teaching as well as scholarship and research.

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