Strategic Planning at Valencia

  • Big Meeting 2016
  • Year of Reflection
  • Strategic Planning Kickoff Big Meeting
  • Community Engagement Data Discussion

The Strategic Planning “Big Meeting” took place on Friday, February 5, 2016, at the Special Events Center on West Campus. 171 faculty and staff from Valencia College were present and had an opportunity to hear updates on Valencia’s next strategic plan, provide feedback on the strategic initiatives’ goals and objectives, and learn more on how Valencia is meeting the needs of our community.

As you may remember, we began our new plan based on themes that emerged during last spring’s Year of Reflection discussions. The strategic themes and initiatives that we identified included Evidence Based Practice, New Student Experience, Direct Connect 2.0, Online Learning, and Part-Time Faculty Engagement. We also added an additional initiative based upon feedback from all of you, called Teaching for Learning in the 21st Century. All teams worked diligently under a tight timeline to produce a working theory and vision, along with goals and objectives for each initiative. These drafts can be found by visiting the work team webpages within the Strategic Planning page.


Meeting Documents:

The Invitation to Reflection provided  an opportunity to engage faculty, staff, adminstrators and in some instances students in a dialogue about  Valencia as a learning centered institutionand, the long-range vision for the College.  The discussions prompted how we, as a College, will impact student learning and our community. The evens took place at each campus and the district office, beginning in February and ending April 2015, and they helped frame the strategic work over the next five years.  Additionally, the college also hosted a Learning Symposium on March 20 and 21 where many of our adjunct faculty attended and learning about college initiatives and answered the question, “What impact would the 21st century college have on its community?

Additionally, the college hosted its first annual Learning Symposium on March 20 and 21st.  There were 103 participants and 19 facilitators.  Of the participants, 58 were full-time faculty and staff, and 45 were part-time faculty and staff.  The symposium focused on three main themes of work that the college in which the college is presently engage:  Front Door Alignment, High Impact Practices, and Buidling Connections for Student Success.  The symposium ended with a design challenge in which participants reflected on what they learned, how to integrate the information into their work, and how the information could inform our strategic plan.  More specifically, participants were asked to answer, “What impact would the 21st century college have on its community?”

Below is a snapshot of common themes gathered from each session. The full report can be found here.

Questions for Invitation to Reflection:

Reflections on Learning Centered Journey

  1. Where are we on our learning-centered journey?
  2. What are our strengths as a learning-centered institution? What do we do well? In what ways do we best promote learning and student success?
  3. Where are the gaps? In what ways might we improve?

Reflections on Our Impact in the Community

  1. What is and should be our place in the community?
  2. How have we effectively (or not effectively) impacted the community?
  3. How are we uniquely positioned to serve the community in Central Florida? Intersection of what we can do and the aspiration of the community.
  4. If the community continues to support us, we promise the community…

Common Themes:

Reflections on Learning Centered Journey



  • Faculty
  • TLA
  • Diversity
  • Resources
  • Brand Name/Aspen
  • Faculty Development
  • Learning Support
  • Adaptability
  • Collaboration
  • Continuous Improvement
  • Creativity
  • Dedicated Employees
  • Learning-Centered
  • NSE

  • Online
  • Adjunct Development
  • Advising
  • College-Readiness/Motivation for Students
  • Community Connection
  • Communication


Reflections on Our Impact in the Community



Our Promise

  • Direct Connect
  • Learning Day/Service
  • Advisory Boards
  • Internships
  • Partnerships
  • Reputation
  • Processes/Outreach (i.e. Got College)
  • Talent Pipeline/Alternative Training/Continuing Education
  • Transitioning Veterans
  • Service Learning Opportunities
  • Internships
  • Bringing Community into College/Community Forward
  • Student/Faculty Community Connection

  • Address and respond to community needs. Conduct needs analysis.
  • Increase access to college. “College is Possible” message
  • Raise standard of living, decrease/improve poverty levels
  • Workforce needs (i.e. certificates, workshops, skillshops, training)
  • Access to campuses for events
  • Reach out to non-traditional students (i.e. older age group.)


On Friday, September 25, 2015, the Strategic Planning Kick-Off event was held at the School of Public Safety, where 132 employees attended.President Shugart welcomed us and urged us to keep our thinking strategic and not operational. Participants then divided into five strategic planning work teams: Assessment for Learning, DirectConnect™ 2.0, New Student Experience, Online Learning and Part-Time Faculty Engagement.

Each of the five work teams had co-facilitators and assigned steering committee members who shared the history of the initiative and provided data relevant to the current state of the work.The teams then began to draft working theories, vision statements and goals for each strategic initiative.The day, though long, was exhilarating.

Next Steps
During October and November, the five teams will meet independently to write objectives and assessments for each goal, and a final draft report will be prepared by December.All progress on the goals will be updated on the Strategic Planning website.

Additionally, based on input and response to the call for participation, the Steering Committee determined that there was significant energy around the formation of a strategic teaching initiative, which is tentatively called Teaching for Learning in the 21st Century. The 21st century themes that were proposed included: education forsustainability, effective use of technology in the classroom, service learning, global learning, and peace, justice and inclusive excellence.

For those of you interested in participating in this new area, please send an email to Noelia Maldonado at so that we can add you to the work team. The Steering Committee is meeting with the faculty and staff who made the initial suggestions on Thursday, October 22, 2015, from 9 - 10:30 a.m. at the District Office, Room 502.We will have more information about the logistics and the timeline posted on the Strategic Planning website.

Meeting Documents:


Michael B. Cooney Strategic Advisors, LLC was asked by Dr. Sandy Shugart to gather a wide variety of information and data that would be used to prepare for Valencia College's 2015 Strategic Planning Meeting. It includes information and data about the local Educational Ecosystem, Workforce Issues, Economic Drivers, and compares the Orlando Metro Area to other metro areas throughout the U.S. From this information and data, a group of key Valencia leaders will decide what is the most relevant to present during the Strategic Planning Meeting.

The information and data is presented in a fairly raw format, but in most cases includes basic context so the reader understands why it was included. The intent is to create a dialog that will help determine what role Valencia should play (beyond education) in the communities the institution serves.

Every effort has been made to format the information and data consistently; however, please note the document is still a draft version. The information and data deemed relevant for the Strategic Planning Meeting will be formatted in a slide presentation.

Michael B. Cooney Strategic Advisors, LLC (MBCSA) is a project management and consulting company supporting the needs of academic institutions, organizations, and companies. MBCSA's clients include UCF Regional Campuses (UCFRC), Valencia College, Seminole State College, Lake-Sumter State College, Eastern Florida State College, Orlando Economic Development Commission, and CPI Technologies. While working with UCFRC, MBCSA helped create UCF's Bachelor of Applied Science and DirectConnect™ to UCF program, organized the Curriculum Alignment Initiative, and managed numerous Working Groups, which included state college partners.

The Power to Serve: Valencia's Five-Year Impact Plan

Impact Planning Definitions


Contact Information:

Susan Ledlow
VP, Academic Affairs & Planning
P: 407-582-3423

Karen M. Borglum
AVP, Curriculum & Assessment
P: 407-582-3455

Noelia Maldonado Rodriguez
Coordinator, Institutional Advancement
P: 407-582-3487


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