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Where planning comes together. T​he power of SCUP is its community. We learn from one another, sharing how we’ve achieved success and, maybe more importantly, what we’ve learned from failure. SCUP authors, produces, and curates thousands of resources to help you prepare for the future, overcome challenges, and bring planning together at your college or university.

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TaP Into SCUP

Published
May 19, 2022

The Indispensable Planner

Learn more about how planners can play a new, indispensable role—transformation architect—in helping their institutions transform to meet current challenges. The authors of the new book, Transforming for Turbulent Times: An Action Agenda for Higher Education Leaders, describe this transformative role, why planners are obvious candidates for the role, and the new mindset, behaviors, knowledge, and skills they will need to fulfill it.

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Planning for Higher Education Journal

Published
April 6, 2022

Teetering on the Demographic Cliff, Part 3

Different Conditions Require a Different Kind of Planning

Higher education has faced major changes for some time—COVID-19 accelerated that volatility—and now we’re anticipating the demographic downslope in student enrollment. How and when should institutions mobilize for the difficult work of planning in the face of wrenching change?

From Volume 50 Number 2 | January–March 2022

Abstract: Part 1 of this series described a major contraction in the pool of college-going 18-year-olds that will reverse decades of growth and stability for higher education. Part 2 explored how we can shape a planning context that supports success in the coming 10 or 20 years. Part 3 suggests how our approach to planning must shift to prepare for abrupt change.

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Planning for Higher Education Journal

Published
December 15, 2021

Teetering on the Demographic Cliff, Part 2

Turning Away from the Challenge Is the Riskiest Strategy of All

Higher education has faced major changes for some time—COVID-19 accelerated that volatility—and now we’re anticipating the demographic downslope in student enrollment. How and when should institutions mobilize for the difficult work of planning in the face of wrenching change?

From Volume 50 Number 1 | October–December 2021

Abstract: Part 1 of this series described a major contraction in the pool of college-going 18-year-olds that will reverse decades of growth and stability for higher education. Drawing on the path-breaking analysis of Carleton College economist Nathan Grawe, it outlined how widespread but variable the change will be, and discussed some of the effects—on enrollment, revenue, facilities, staffing, and more—for which colleges and universities should be preparing. This Part 2 explores these implications: How can we shape a planning context that supports success in the coming 10 or 20 years? What attitudes and skillsets will remain useful, and what may need to change?

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Planning for Higher Education Journal

Published
September 17, 2021

Teetering on the Demographic Cliff, Part 1

Prepare Now for the Challenging Times Ahead

A long-term decline in birth rates raises fundamental planning questions for higher education as the pool of 18-year-olds contracts after 2025. How can planners and leaders use the time we have to prepare for some of the most wrenching changes in a generation?

From Volume 49 Number 4 | July–September 2021

Abstract: A long-term decline in birth rates raises fundamental planning questions for higher education as the pool of 18-year-olds contracts after 2025. This Planning for Higher Education series explores how planners and leaders can use the time we have to prepare for some of the most wrenching changes in a generation. This article, Part 1, surveys the planning horizon as we emerge from COVID-19 and describes the challenges ahead. Part 2 considers specific planning strategies institutions can adopt to meet the challenge. Part 3 tackles perhaps the most daunting challenge: how to mobilize institutions to actually do what needs to be done, however inconvenient (or worse) that may be.

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Conference Recordings

Published
July 15, 2021

Don’t Get Me Started

Launching Integrated Planning Through Crises and Change

This session will address the university's setbacks, challenges, opportunities, and solutions in launching a shoestring integrated planning process amidst multiple crises.
Abstract: In the midst of post-COVID enrollment and financial troubles the University of Arkansas at Little Rock learned to leverage planning and accreditation to build community and resilience. This session will address the university's setbacks, challenges, opportunities, and solutions in launching a shoestring integrated planning process amidst multiple crises: retrenchment, restructuring, leadership changes, an accreditation visit, COVID, and new enterprise resource planning (ERP) software. Find out how your institution can apply out concrete, low-cost, real-life strategies for initial integrated planning initiatives as well as respond to common setbacks and pitfalls in a VUCA context.

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Conference Recordings

Published
July 14, 2021

A Mountain Climber’s Guide to Scrambling Through Change

This session will discuss how to take key climbing skills—assessing a changing environment and determining which tools, resources, and expertise are needed to manage change—and apply them to higher education.
Abstract: Solo climbing mountainous terrain is like managing change in higher education—it requires meticulous planning, considerable effort, and the ability to adapt to a changing environment. This session will discuss how to take key climbing skills—assessing a changing environment and determining which tools, resources, and expertise are needed to manage change—and apply them to higher education. It will share a framework to plan for and manage change so you can achieve your personal and professional objectives.

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Conference Recordings

Published
July 14, 2021

Keynote | Michael Sorrell

Dr. Michael J. Sorrell is the longest-serving president in the 148-year history of Paul Quinn College. During his near 14 years of leadership, Paul Quinn has become a nationally regarded institution for its efforts to remake higher education in order to serve the needs of under-resourced students and their communities.
Abstract: Dr. Michael J. Sorrell is the longest-serving president in the 148-year history of Paul Quinn College. During his near 14 years of leadership, Paul Quinn has become a nationally regarded institution for its efforts to remake higher education in order to serve the needs of under-resourced students and their communities.

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Conference Recordings

Published
July 14, 2021

Post-Pandemic Pivots

Seizing this Moment of Opportunity

In this session, we’ll explore how to step back from moments of crisis and see them in perspective, as moments also brimming with opportunity to regroup, rethink our strategies and refocus our resources to lead.
Abstract: In turbulent times, visionary leaders and their committed crews recognize the winds of change, reset their sails and change course so they emerge in a better position than before. The global pandemic of 2020-21 has been a once-in-a-century disruption for education at all levels, which has magnified pre-existing inequities and vulnerabilities, and compressed a decade’s worth of social and technological change into a year. Even once this threat has past, many of our campuses will see recurrent disruptions from extreme weather events, other zoonotic viruses, geopolitical conflict, wildfires or flooding. We know now that business and academic continuity will demand flexible, lower density approaches and an integrated, omnichannel approach to student services, scholarship and learning. It can be challenging to step back from moments of crisis and see them in perspective, as moments also brimming with opportunity to regroup, rethink our strategies and refocus our resources to lead positive

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Conference Recordings

Published
July 12, 2021

The Paradigm Shift for Higher Education

Join us to discuss the postsecondary education paradigm shift and its potential impact on our educational infrastructure, ecosystem, and role.
Abstract: Over the past year, there have been institutional shifts in practices, policies, and innovative approaches to change. This phase of a revolution of postsecondary education demonstrates that our 'lived experience' is not intended to last or remain unchanged permanently. This realization has been growing in awareness but is accelerated by a national pandemic. College planning has taken on a new meaning as variables of change. It encompasses and requires a recognition that there is a systemic confluence of forces that encompass infrastructure, technology, people, and social justice. Without continuous adaptation and thinking smarter, quicker, and more innovatively, an effective college will fail to integrate the dynamics of accelerated change, as they affect each institution's policies, people, finances and student success outcomes. Join us to discuss the paradigm shift and its potential impact on our educational infrastructure, ecosystem, and role.

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Conference Recordings

Published
July 12, 2021

Transformation in Turbulent Times

An Action Guide for Higher Education

Come learn about our framework for leading transformation, including a checklist for success, case studies in change, and resources for smart planning and strong execution.
Abstract: Higher education leaders must evolve in order to navigate the profound changes that are impacting their institutions. These challenging times require strategic foresight, transformative planning skills, and strong execution. With accelerated urgency driving the need for transformation, leaders must apply smart planning competencies to multiple campus areas in order to create a clear road map for future regeneration. Come learn about our framework for leading transformation, including a checklist for success, case studies in change, and resources for smart planning and strong execution that will help you respond to ongoing disruptive factors and plan for a thriving future.

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