How did Flight Plan come to be?

In October 2012, President Oldham asked that a steering committee be formed to work on a project to help identify strategic directions for the university and to make recommendations to him. The project, often referred to in the beginning as a gap analysis, focused on looking at the landscape of higher education, gathering data for comparative peer institutions and suggesting strategic focus areas. The committee’s charge included engaging stakeholders throughout the process. As Flight Plan, the project now turns to developing directions and action steps across campus.

I thought we had a set of peers. Why did we need new ones?

The peer sets allow TTU the ability to assess comparative performance. The national comparative peers allow us to compare ourselves in data-driven measurements along a chosen set of executive metrics. The Tennessee peers give us a view of institutions directly competing for students and resources.

Why is there so much emphasis on the metrics?

Data and empirical evidence are needed to make informed decisions. Too often we make decisions based on anecdotal information or weak data. Metrics enable us to track ongoing progress.

How does this plan relate to the university’s budget?

Flight Plan allows us to prioritize and make budget decisions that have a direct impact on improving the metrics related to our focus areas. We will become better stewards of our current funds and will be able to make more effective decisions with a plan in place if additional funding becomes available.

Who is responsible in my college or department for directing the efforts related to Flight Plan?

As the university moves forward in the process of developing actions steps, there will be a series of open forums and conversations at the college and department level and across all segments of the campus. We are looking for participation and ideas to come from everyone in our community.

How can I help?

It will take all of us—administration, faculty, staff, students, alumni and community supporters —working together, to achieve this goal.

  • After reviewing the site, please use the feedback form to ask questions and share ideas. We encourage all stakeholders on campus and in the community to contribute.
  • Discuss with your colleagues how your unit, department and college compare to our national comparative and state peers.
  • After benchmarking, develop plans for your unit, department and college that support the university's action plans.
  • Provide feedback.
  • Get engaged in day-to-day activities that contribute to meeting the spirit and goals Flight Plan.

Is this going to increase my workload?

The idea is to increase your effectiveness as it relates to our focus areas. The plan should result in everyone doing what they are best at while working toward common goals. We are striving for efficient and effective planning and performance.

How will we know if we are making progress?

President Oldham will share progress updates with the campus on a regular basis through his blog, the Flight Plan website, meetings and open forums.