Interim Dean Harriet Feldman, PhD, RN, FAAN, presented on the academic goals, highlighting that each of the schools will have their own strategic plans prepared by early 2011. She also noted that the University will continue to concentrate on areas such as faculty development, interdisciplinary education, and the use of instructional technology. Additionally, she announced the newest Pace Center for Excellence: Academic and Pedagogical Innovation.
Senior Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer Bill McGrath reported on a number of facility upgrades that had been completed or were in the works. Among the completed upgrades: a $902,000 overhaul of lecture halls completed this summer, improvements in the Kessel Center and Lienhard labs, new Mac labs, technology enhanced classrooms, e-mail server upgrades, and additional improvements to Banner and Blackboard. He also discussed the PLV master plan and announced the NYC master plan, which includes upgrades to the fitness center in One Pace Plaza (to open next month) and a new residence hall on Broadway less than four blocks from campus. The new dorm will open in 2013 and replace the dorms currently in Brooklyn.
More positive news from enrollment as Vice President of Enrollment Management Robina Schepp reported continued growth of full-time student enrollment, which has increased by 1,200 during the last three years (excluding special programs, such as Teach for America). She also announced the development of a new five-year strategy for steadily increasing both the number of incoming students as well as the quality of their test scores and grades. This strategy will be executed in a number of ways, including differentiating the Pace campuses and improving conversion numbers.
On the marketing side, Vice President for University Relations Tom Torello announced several exciting new social media initiatives including Enrollment’s work with PaceYourself (a Facebook application to introduce accepted students to the Pace Community and improve conversion) and a pilot program with location-based social networking site FourSquare. Pace is one of only 20 universities in the country participating in the program and the only university in New York City. In addition, the move is under way to a new content management system for the University’s website that will enable content to be syndicated for use in Pace’s many media outlets.
As the meeting was winding down, good news was given on the financial front: After several challenging years, Pace is now projecting a $6 million surplus for this budget year despite the economic conditions. However it was noted that due to current low interest rates, a portion of this surplus will be devoted to rebuilding unrestricted net assets. In addition, contribution to the Annual Fund increased by 26 percent from last year and this year’s goal is to increase that another 16 percent. Overall, the University hopes to increase our surplus from $6 million to $10 million and has a multi-year plan to help us meet that goal.
You can read more about the vision for the future of Pace in this month’s President’s corner. Or for more information about the implementation of the Strategic Plan and to watch video from the event, visit our Strategic Plan website.