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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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Published
July 21, 2022

A Practical Guide to Strategic Planning in Higher Education

Second Edition, with New and Updated Content

A resource for anyone engaged in college or university strategic planning, and an excellent primer for planning committees. This second edition also contains new strategies for using an institution’s strategic plan during times of institutional upheaval, and additional techniques for jump-starting various parts of the planning process.

Abstract: A Practical Guide to Strategic Planning in Higher Education is a resource for anyone engaged in college or university strategic planning; it is also an excellent primer for planning committees. Using clear definitions, practical tips, and examples drawn from actual situations, this short book acts as a manual for both experienced planners and those who are new to the process. This second edition also contains new strategies for using an institution’s strategic plan during times of institutional upheaval, and additional techniques for jump-starting various parts of the planning process.

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Blog

Published
July 6, 2022

What Is a Bridge Plan?

(And Does Your Institution Need One?)

A bridge plan allows a college or university to continue to pursue defined strategic pathways during times of uncertainty or rapid, unpredictable change. It’s also a good solution for when faculty and staff are overwhelmed due to a highly volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous (VUCA) environment.

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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 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
July 12, 2021

The Higher Education Federal Policy Landscape

Insights from Washington

As we approach the first six months of a new administration and Congress, Terry Hartle, Senior Vice President of Government and Public Affairs at the American Council on Education, will provide perspective on the impact so far of the changes to the political landscape from the 2020 elections and the potential public policy road ahead for higher education and accreditation.

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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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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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Conference Recordings

Published
July 22, 2020

2020 Annual Conference | July 2020

Congress, COVID-19, and the Colleges

This session will explore the policy and political climate in Washington DC, discuss current and potential policy changes, and encourage you to consider how these will impact your institution.
Abstract: As the start of the 2020–21 academic year approaches, America faces a series of unprecedented challenges: the worst public health crisis since 1919, the worst economic environment since 1933, and the worst civil unrest since 1968. Public policy-makers have so far struggled to respond to this rapidly changing environment. How will the federal government's actions affect colleges and universities? What other governmental policies might ameliorate these challenges on campuses? This session will explore the policy and political climate in Washington DC, discuss current and potential policy changes, and encourage you to consider how these will impact your institution.

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