Mission Revision Process
Why did we revise our mission statement?
Our last mission statement was developed over ten years ago, and we needed to ask ourselves, “does it accurately reflect who we are?” Not everyone saw themselves or their programs in the past mission. It is essential that our mission statement accurately reflects who we are, what we do, and who we serve.
We also needed to review our mission in light of the new NWCCU accreditation standards that require institutions to have a broad-based mission statement, supported by measurable goals and metrics, and to focus on student success and student achievement. Further, the new NWCCU standards require that institutions place diversity, equity, and inclusion at the forefront of their planning and assessment to close equity gaps. Lastly, to conform with the new standards, we no longer need to organize our mission fulfillment efforts around core themes.
Based on these reasons, we embarked on a process to revise our mission, goals, and metrics to accurately reflect the identity of UAS and meet the new standards outlined by the NWCCU.
Process and Timeline
We followed a process that began with our reasons for revising the mission and allowed everyone in the UAS community to voice their opinions. Most feedback came through Google Forms, although some met as a campus or department or small groups and sent input directly to the chancellor. All feedback, regardless of the method it was received, was read and considered. At each level, the institutional effectiveness director compiled the feedback into themes. Executive cabinet members reviewed all comments and themes as the basis for mission statement revisions. We hope to have a revised mission statement to present to the Board of Regents at their February meeting.
In preparation for re-accreditation, Provost Carey, serving as the UAS Academic Liaison Officer, convened a group of faculty and staff to review the UAS Vision, Mission, and Core Themes. Because of the upcoming accreditation visit, no changes were considered at that time and any changes to these elements would be addressed after the NWCCU visit in 2019
30 faculty and staff representatives attended a half day workshop (notes from the February workshop, PDF), discussing the following:
- Does the current mission describe who we are?
- Is the current mission measurable?
- Does the current mission emphasize student achievement and success?
- Discuss your thoughts about having Institutional Learning Outcomes
- What should our goals be for student achievement and success?
Executive Cabinet and Institutional Effectiveness reviewed the new NWCCU standards and discussed the question "What does UAS look like in 5 years from now?"
Executive Cabinet utilized feedback from the prior mission focused workshops and the new accreditation standards to create a proposed mission statement. All faculty and staff were asked for their input and feedback on the proposed mission statement and over 40 faculty and staff provided responses, through both email and the provided google form. Overall, employees were split on their reactions to the proposed mission. Close to 50% of employees provided suggestions for revising the proposed mission and 22% requested UAS keep the current mission. Additionally, close to 1 in 4 faculty who responded to the survey (summary of survey responses) requested that research/creative expression be included in the mission statement.
Executive Cabinet reviewed all feedback from faculty and staff and utilized suggestions and revisions of the proposed mission to craft version two. Initially the executive cabinet proposed both a mission and goals, but through the feedback, it was decided to simplify this by only having a mission statement and developing metrics with goals directed connected to the mission statement. All faculty and staff were again asked to provide input and feedback on version two of the proposed mission statement. Again, over 40 faculty and staff provided responses, with most showing a positive response to this version with minor edits.
Executive Cabinet reviewed all feedback and developed version three of the proposed mission statement. On November 13, the Chancellor asked faculty, staff, and students governance groups and members of the Chancellor’s Core Cabinet to review and provide feedback on version three of the proposed mission statement. Faculty and staff groups provided feedback and recommendations. The Faculty Senate was also asked to survey faculty for input on whether or not the word "research" should be included in the mission statement.
Executive Cabinet reviewed the suggestions of the governance groups and is working on a proposed final version of the mission statement to discuss on January 6, 2021 during Spring Start-Up.
Chancellor Carey presented the mission revision process and the proposed version at Spring Start-Up (presentation); She announced that the UAS community would be asked to vote on the proposed mission. Eighty-five percent of respondents voted to approve the proposed mission statement.
New mission statement was approved by the University of Alaska Board of Regents on February 25, 2021.
Future Process Plans
Develop measurable goals and metrics in support of the mission statement. These goals and metrics will be approved by the Chancellor’s Core Cabinet which includes governance representatives.
NWCCU Three Year Report, FY19–FY21.
Mission Drafts Considered
Previous UAS Mission
Student learning enhanced by faculty scholarship, undergraduate research and creative activities, community engagement, and the cultures and environment of Southeast Alaska.
UAS is a student-centered, regional university where students learn, grow and define their future through high quality instruction and individualized student support. Located in Southeast Alaska with campuses in Juneau, Sitka and Ketchikan, UAS is uniquely positioned to offer marine and maritime, coastal rainforest, and indigenous studies in addition to an array of liberal arts, education, business, and workforce development programs.
UAS is a student-centered university that provides quality instruction in liberal arts, professional, and technical fields. We belong to, and serve, the coastal environments, cultures, economies, and communities of Alaska through scholarship and creative activity, interdisciplinary education, and workforce development.
The University of Alaska Southeast is committed to equity and inclusion in education, offering student-centered learning and engagement in liberal arts, professional, and technical fields on the homelands of the Tlingit, Haida, and Tsimshian peoples. We belong to and serve the coastal environments, cultures, economies, and communities of Alaska through scholarship and creative activity, interdisciplinary education, and workforce development.
The University of Alaska Southeast is a student-centered university that provides instruction in liberal arts, professional, and technical fields. On the homelands of the Tlingit, Haida, and Tsimshian peoples, we serve the coastal environments, cultures, economies, and communities of Alaska, through interdisciplinary education, workforce development, and scholarship, research and creative activity.