Update from Dr. Mary Bluechardt, President & Vice-Chancellor – May 5, 2020

As committed, I am writing to keep you apprised of both the process and progress in the development of our Strategic Plan.  Work has been ongoing both in front of and behind the scenes.

Beginning in August, 2019 and over the course of the ensuing 6 months, I undertook a series of comprehensive consultation sessions – each of them resulting in invaluable discussions, ideas, and information.  Sessions were held both on and off campus and involved an expansive list of constituents/constituency groups – included among them were: Board members (current and past), members of Senate, MSVU Faculty and Staff, Management Forum, Union groups, Library, Co-Op, Experiential Learning, Academic Advising, Art Gallery, Centre for Women in Business, Nancy’s Chair, L’nu Advisory Circle, Students of African Descent Advisory Committee, 2SLGBTQI+ Ally Committee, the Committee on Academic Policy & Planning, the Senate Committee on Teaching and Learning, Graduate Studies Program & Policy Committee, Graduate Studies Scholarships, Assistantships & Awards Committee, the Committee on Research & Academic Policy and Planning, Students including full time, part time and distance, the Alumnae Association and Alumni Board, Sisters of Charity, Donors, the AAU Executive Director, Community and Business Leaders and Associates, Co-op Employers, Mi’kmaw Native Friendship Centre, the Black Educators Association, and elected officials including municipal, provincial and federal.  While this list is fairly exhaustive, in addition to in person meetings were online submissions – which also provided a wealth of useful perspectives and information.

From a personal standpoint, this process was very rewarding in that it afforded me the opportunity to engage with many people – all of whom are hugely invested in the success of MSVU – and some of whom I do not have the privilege of interacting with daily.

Following extensive review of the data, 7 themes emerged – they include:

• Community engagement

• Equity, diversity, inclusion and accessibility

• Truth and Reconciliation

• A healthy university campus for all

• Transformative teaching and learning

• Research and scholarly work

• Operational excellence and sustainability

From these Themes…..high level Objectives and Strategies are emerging and work is underway to evolve.  I have begun the process of sharing the draft Plan – entitled, “Strength Through Community” with various groups, with further distribution to come…stay tuned!

Following the approval of a final draft by the Board of Governors, work will begin at the unit level to develop the more detailed strategic and operational plans.

What is most clear is that the heartbeat of the Mount has not wavered and is representative of our history – Education of Women and Girls, while working towards a more just and inclusive society.

I look forward to continuing to update you.