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Learning Resources

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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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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Example Plans

Published
February 23, 2022

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Example Plans

Published
February 2, 2022

Example Plan

This short-duration strategic framework describes goals and very specific action steps to guide the institution through the current, globally tumultuous era.

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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
December 10, 2021

Book Review: Broke

The Racial Consequences of Underfunding Public Universities

From Volume 50 Number 1 | October–December 2021

Abstract: by Laura T. Hamilton and Kelly Nielsen
The University of Chicago Press
294 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0-226-60540-1 (cloth)
ISBN-13:978-0-226-74745-3 (paper)
ISBN-13: 978-0-226-74759 (e-book)

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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 13, 2021

Strategic Plan Implementation in a VUCA Environment

In this session, we'll share how Lakehead University developed a phased strategic approach to guide implementation of its strategic plan.
Abstract: Institutions are currently operating in a VUCA environment, requiring them to manage immediate pressures while still advancing long-term goals. In this session, we'll share how Lakehead University developed a phased strategic approach to guide implementation of its strategic plan. Come learn how a revised approach can serve as a foundation to support a community-informed strategic plan implementation in a VUCA world.

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Conference Recordings

Published
March 10, 2021

2021 Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference | March 2021

Keynote | VCU | Social Unrest in the Midst of a Pandemic . . . Now What?

Join us to discuss how VCU changed its planning strategies and built campus environment to simultaneously address a public health crisis and calls for social reform.
Abstract: When the pandemic forced students, faculty, and staff off campus in March 2020, Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) had just begun initial investments to implement the first phases of its recently completed master plan. What impacts would the pandemic have on the master plan, space planning, and the delivery of VCU's core mission? While VCU adapted and planned for a return to campus, Richmond became a center of social unrest with protests throughout VCU's campuses. Join us to discuss how VCU changed its planning strategies and built campus environment to simultaneously address a public health crisis and calls for social reform.

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Example Plans

Published
March 5, 2021

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Webinar Recordings

Published
September 16, 2020

Coffee Chat: All Good Plans Change

Amanda Markovic from GBBN Architects and Jennifer McDowell from Carnegie Mellon University moderated this coffee chat on how institutions can adjust to keep those on campus feeling safe, supported, and healthy.
Abstract: Nobody knows when campus will return to full capacity, but in the short term, there are things that can be done to bring students, faculty and staff back smartly and appropriately. Campus life will look different, but what’s wrong with different? We want our students to feel safe, supported, stay healthy while maintaining a different on-campus experience for every student.

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