Focus groups were held in November 2013 so that the campus community could continue conversations on a deeper level, giving necessary time and attention to the key issues raised in the visioning process. Based on input from the Town Halls, three overarching themes took shape:
- Discussion of strategies that will help us grow our enrollment, improve our retention rates, and continue to maintain our quality and high impact practices, yet at the same time, make our degrees more affordable by renewing efforts to increase our public and private funding as well as exploring programmatic options in light of best practices. Read the raw notes from session 1.
- Discussion of building the "anytime is the right time to learn" attitude at Winthrop by considering how our methods of course delivery, class scheduling, and our academic calendar could be used to better accommodate the variable needs of all students including our post-traditional, veteran, and graduate students. Read the raw notes from session 2.
- Discussion of strengthening our student life, study abroad, and community engagement efforts and empowering our faculty, staff, students, and alumni to join in collective action. By finding ways to empower our community outreach locally, regionally, and globally, we can inspire our students to be responsive to global concerns and to prepare them for professional success in a global environment. Read the raw notes from session 3.
A focus group discussion on March 1 was part of the Board of Trustees annual retreat. The trustees discussed strategic priorities of the university, based on town hall feedback and the discussions noted above. Read the raw notes from the board session.