Prior to Building on Strength, Connecticut College had developed four strategic plans:
- A Time to Lead (1989-1994)
- A Time to Lead II (1994-1999)
- Transformations: A New Strategic Plan for Connecticut College (1999-2004)
- Connecticut College 2011: Launching the Second Century (2004- )
The first three plans were similar in scope, focusing on a small number of initiatives. The fourth was a much larger collection, outlining 63 projects. President Lee Higdon spent his first year reducing the 2004 plan by about half, resulting in the 25 items included in the 2007 document, Strategic Priorities for the Second Century. The comprehensive campaign that followed in 2008 focused on four large areas: internationalization, science education, financial aid, and residential education. These campaign goals, along with the specific goals and objectives prepared annually by the senior administration, constituted the strategic planning of the Higdon years.
As President Katherine Bergeron began her second full academic year, then, the College had not engaged in full-fledged strategic planning for over a decade, and the institution was well positioned to begin this work. President Bergeron’s 2014 Year in Review Report (PDF) indicated some general directions for the College, and faculty’s work to revise the general education program gave us a running start for a new planning cycle.
A strategic planning process is an opportunity for institutional reflection and self-study that takes place within a separate cycle of decennial review by our regional accrediting agency, the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC). The figure below shows the chronology of the past three decades or so of planning and accreditation cycles at the College, highlighting the length of time that has elapsed since our last planning cycle.