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Michael C. Rogers
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Making Headlines For More Than 160 Years

Date of Publication: 
10/02/2012

A Sustainable, Accountable Path Forward for UDC

The University of the District of Columbia’s Board of Trustees and President on Monday conveyed to the Mayor and City Council a document that illustrates the beginning of a sustainable transformation for Washington’s only public university.  “Creating Pathways to Sustainability and Accountability” chronicles a three month effort in which Trustees and Staff have developed a right-sizing plan that eliminates waste and redundancy; replaces outdated programs and courses with programs aligned with the demand for careers currently available and careers which will be in demand in the future; and improves operational efficiency. 

The plan cements a commitment to ensure the availability of a strong Community College, a competitive flagship University and a top-notch law school for the residents of the District of Columbia.  It reflects a belief that District residents are entitled to a high quality affordable public higher education alternative available to them within the boundaries of the District of Columbia.  The aim is to make the University a first choice for District residents. 

“This is a solid first step,” said Board of Trustees Chair Dr. Elaine A. Crider, acknowledging the evolving plan will continue to realize additional efficiencies over the coming months.  “We have taken this effort very seriously, and it has allowed us to re-examine the University’s mission and create a new vision which honors the school’s history while embracing necessary change.”

The plan (read the plan here) focuses on six major strategic areas: 

Academic Review

Programs are being re-oriented and aligned with current marketplace job demands.

Tuition

Tuition rates are being evaluated to ensure competitiveness while offering an affordable, accessible option for students.

Public Service Focus

A public service focus will become central in course design in order to meet the needs of the community and advance the Mayor’s “One City” vision.

Real Estate

The University’s properties will be realigned in order to maximize efficiency and space utilization.

Compensation/Personnel

A review process is underway to examine compensation and personnel structure with a commitment toward eliminating waste and maximizing value.

Enrollment Plan

The University commits to developing a comprehensive enrollment plan that is realistic and designed to attract students to the University.

“The University of DC is committed to serving the aspirations of our students,” said Dr. Sessoms.  “We realize that through change comes opportunity.  We have a real opportunity here to continue serving our students in a way that has value for taxpayers.”

The plan details tangible savings with timelines for completion.  Sensitive to the direction of the Mayor and City Council, the University is committed to routine and consistent follow-up in order to ensure complete communication through the process.  The University is committed to communicating with all stakeholders as the process unfolds.  Honoring the legacy of Historically Black Colleges & Universities (HBCU) and in  the tradition of its great land-grant status, the University remains a critical asset in the lives and development of District residents.  University leaders commit themselves to creating a greater educational experience for students that prepares them for the 21st Century workplace.

(Be sure to also check out Frequently Asked Questions about Right Sizing)