Strategic Plan Goals


Kent State University at Stark will promote student success from the first semester through graduation.

Objective 1.1:  Kent State University at Stark will offer students a “signature experience” by

  • Providing students with a university education delivered by distinguished faculty
  • Connecting college majors to career opportunities
  • Developing a strong internship program
  • Supporting study abroad and study away opportunities
  • Reducing student debt through financial literacy, loan counseling and cost-saving textbook adoptions
  • Creating unique and meaningful co-curricular and experiential learning opportunities
  • Increasing options for student research in all majors
  • Implementing a leadership curriculum in the classroom
  • Expanding opportunities for service learning

Objective 1.2:  Kent State University at Stark will support student success and retention by

  • Creating options for incoming students at all levels of academic preparation
  • Implementing a relevant, focused and innovative FYE program
  • Providing every student with easy access to academic advising
  • Crafting a schedule of credit classes that better meets student need
  • Providing high-quality, accessible academic support services
  • Increasing need and merit-based grant and scholarship resources for all qualified students
  • Recognizing benchmarks of academic achievement
  • Expanding the role of career services at all class levels
  • Determining and providing student life activities linked to retention

Objective 1.3:  Kent State University at Stark will strengthen our entering freshman class by

  • Increasing and promoting scholarship opportunities for high-achieving, direct from high school entering freshmen
  • Actively recruiting students for the Honors Program
  • Involving high-achieving current students in appropriate recruitment activities
  • Creating and implementing opportunities for high-achieving middle school students to have multiple on-campus experiences
  • Developing initiatives to identify high-achieving, non-traditional freshmen for grants and scholarships


Kent State University at Stark will promote excellence in student achievement, excellence in teaching and research and will build a vibrant academic community.

Objective 2.1:  Kent State University at Stark will promote academic excellence in student achievement by 

  • Offering an innovative and responsive curriculum that substantially increases experiential learning, writing across the curriculum, quality online courses and internships
  • Strengthening career guidance in helping students understand connections between majors and careers
  • Fostering critical thinking and decision making across the curriculum
  • Promoting and instilling commitment to academic honesty
  • Emphasizing the importance of work ethic

Objective 2.2:  Kent State University at Stark will promote excellence in teaching by 

  • Continuing to recruit faculty with evidence of teaching excellence and commitment to student learning
  • Supporting faculty in the use of innovative strategies, course offerings and interdisciplinary faculty partnerships
  • Promoting, inspiring and exciting faculty to use new and fresh technologies in the classroom to advance their pedagogy
  • Reaffirming the commitment to and the respect for diversity in the classroom

Objective 2.3:  Kent State University at Stark will promote excellence in faculty research and creative activity by 

  • Supporting research and creative activity that makes valuable contributions in all areas, including the wider community
  • Supporting faculty in their research efforts and creative activity—with both funding and time—through, for example, load lifts, travel funding and assistance with grant writing and administration
  • Promoting student and faculty research and creative activity collaborations across all disciplines

Objective 2.4:  Kent State University at Stark will build a vibrant academic community by 

  • Intensifying efforts to create a student-centered community to which all students belong
  • Creating more forums to promote and celebrate student accomplishments
  • Encouraging student-student and faculty-student discourse and collaboration
  • Exploring ways to recognize and celebrate outstanding teaching beyond student surveys and teaching awards
  • More widely publicizing, recognizing and celebrating faculty scholarly activities
  • Fostering consultations between faculty, staff and administration for effective, positive decision-making
  • Stressing the importance of diversity in the recruitment and retention of students, faculty and staff
  • Promoting intellectual diversity in the hiring of faculty
  • Welcoming and encouraging all—whether student or alumnus, faculty or staff, administrator or community stakeholder—to become full participants in the life of the campus—to be campus citizens


Kent State University at Stark will promote itself as the number one choice for higher education in Stark County and be known as the place where cutting edge ideas are formed and acted upon and where students graduate ready to contribute to the overall well-being of the community. The greater community will see us as a scholarly resource and an economic driver. 

Objective 3.1:  Kent State University at Stark will leverage the Kent State University brand and promote the distinguishing features and unique opportunities of being the only public university in Stark County by 

  • Capitalizing on the affordability of Kent State University at Stark’s tuition, quality faculty, engaged learning, convenient location and the customer service that students and families receive
  • Emphasizing individual degree programs and how they meet the educational needs of our region
  • Utilizing The University Center to promote student success in the community
  • Developing and promoting benchmarks where students can receive the financial assistance needed to finish their degree
  • Promoting cost savings for students who plan or need to complete an advanced degree

Objective 3.2:  Kent State University at Stark will differentiate itself, its students and faculty from the  competition by 

  • Creating added value opportunities for our students to differentiate themselves from other college graduates (e.g., LaunchPad, The Corporate University certificates and internships)
  • Creating innovative and thought-provoking events where dialogue is encouraged and promoted
  • Integrating career services initiatives into the business community

Objective 3.3:  Kent State University at Stark will communicate with our defined target audiences by  

  • Utilizing communication mediums where students connect and spend their time (social media)


Kent State University at Stark will create a culture of responsiveness to community educational needs.

Objective 4.1:  Kent State University at Stark will identify new degree programs that can be completed at the Stark Campus to support the economic drivers of the community by 

  • Researching economic growth areas in the region
  • Creating interdisciplinary approaches to the development of new degrees
  • Exploring the use of the Regional College for the development of selected degrees
  • Supporting faculty in the development of new courses and degrees
  • Identifying and building pathways from our undergraduate degree programs to appropriate advanced study

Objective 4.2:  Kent State University at Stark will meet regional educational needs with credit and non-credit programs by 

  • Supporting graduate programs for area professionals
  • Providing professional development, research services and business/entrepreneurial counseling
  • Establishing advisory boards for select degree programs
  • Developing more student educational opportunities with area employers
  • Developing links between the student body and The Corporate University, such as a student professional development conference
  • Strengthening and expanding articulation agreements and exploring new degree models with area educational institutions
  • Establishing parameters for spending and revenue from new and existing academic programs

Objective 4.3:  Kent State University at Stark will deliver academic courses and programs in the most effective manner by 

  • Scheduling day, evening, weekend and/or online classes to meet the needs of students
  • Exploring stackable degree programs through collaborating with other local higher education institutions
  • Identifying potential degree programs for acceleration
  • Delivering flexible and alternative scheduling, including accelerated programs


Kent State University at Stark will sustain current and foster new educational partnerships to promote student success from pre-school through college graduation.

Objective 5.1:  Kent State University at Stark will sustain current educational partnerships by 

  • Continuing academic liaisons, articulation and completion agreements with area colleges and universities
  • Strengthening our K-12 relationships by working with the Stark Educational Partnership and the Stark County Educational Services Center
  • Enhancing relationships with area school districts
  • Researching and developing grant partnerships

Objective 5.2:  Kent State University at Stark will create the Office of Educational Outreach within three years to foster new educational partnerships by 

  • Collaborating with Academic Affairs to encourage faculty, along with students, to share their expertise in regional pre-school, kindergarten, elementary, middle and high school classrooms
  • Providing continuing education options on campus for P-12 teachers
  • Developing programs to engage middle and high school parents and students in preparing both academically and financially for college


Kent State University at Stark will actively pursue initiatives to build and support relationships within the communities—both campus and the wider community—where we live, work and thrive. 

Objective 6.1:  Kent State University at Stark will build and support relationships within the wider community by

  • Making its intellectual resources available to the region by encouraging faculty civic and scholarly engagement with community schools, businesses and organizations
  • Encouraging focused faculty research directly related to the community and highlighting its impact on the community
  • Engaging local arts and cultural groups to promote creative, dynamic and reciprocal relationships
  • Recognizing and rewarding faculty, staff and administration for engaging with the community outside of higher education
  • Expanding current methods of engagement to include use of both existing and emerging media
  • Encouraging timely and thematic discussions between campus citizens and the wider community in online and interactive venues
  • Promoting and encouraging faculty and administration participation and leadership in local civic and professional organizations
  • Becoming an active and proactive participant in local government, Chambers of Commerce and business initiatives for the betterment of the wider community
  • Creating and expanding courses, certificates and adult programs—both on campus and online—that engage the community
  • Expanding opportunities for student community volunteerism and service learning to promote both local and global citizenship

Objective 6.2:  Kent State University at Stark will build and support relationships within the campus community by  

  • Expecting all campus citizens to treat others with the honesty and respect in action and communication that each person deserves
  • Continuing those traditions that celebrate student, faculty, staff and administrator accomplishments, and creating new venues and vehicles for recognition
  • Continuing and improving mentorship for new faculty
  • Creating a mentorship program for staff
  • Developing peer-to-peer and peer-to-faculty mentorship opportunities for students
  • Creating a culture supportive of staff development
  • Devising new ways of welcoming the families of campus citizens into the life of the campus
  • Remembering and honoring past campus contributors, embracing and supporting present campus citizens and leaving a thriving campus community to future students and colleagues


Kent State University at Stark will contribute to the regional economic development by preparing students to become well-rounded, productive world citizens and by providing services and locations for business to be done in the community. 

Objective 7.1:  Kent State University at Stark will be known as a community asset and a place where economic development thought leaders meet by  

  • Promoting the Conference Center as the place (both real and virtual) where business happens
  • Hosting quarterly events for the Stark Development Board at the Conference Center
  • Fostering relationships with businesses and giving them reason to come to campus
  • Hosting a “Made and Done in Stark County” community development education forum showcasing cluster business opportunities
  • Capitalizing on Stark County Kent State University alumni by developing ways to connect them to the campus (e.g., create on-going signature event on economic development; LaunchPad)
  • Showcasing Internship & Career Services and alumni at the Conference Center where business executives meet

Objective 7.2:  Kent State University at Stark will foster partnerships between campus members, students and businesses to build campus programs that are relevant and meet market needs by  

  • Conducting the Part-time MBA (PMBA) at the Conference Center
  • Promoting services available through The Corporate University
  • Creating defined linkages with the arts community and the Arts in Stark economic development plan
  • Creating courses, certificates and adult programs (on campus and online) that engage the community by broadening cultural awareness and promoting individual enrichment (e.g., The Corporate University programs)
  • Funding a chair, professorship or executive in-residence
  • Bolstering an entrepreneurial spirit on campus through broadening LaunchPad into all classrooms and disciplines, expanding curriculum and integrating Small Business Development Center, SCORE and The Corporate University into the campus culture

Objective 7.3:  Kent State University at Stark will develop the reputation of the campus as a strategic economic partner in creating learning organizations and communities by  

  • Encouraging and supporting activities in which our faculty members engage the world beyond our campus through research and service-learning opportunities
  • Expanding and creating internship programs for students in the community
  • Engaging in focused research directly related to our local communities
  • Creating a downtown presence to demonstrate commitment to community and contributing to the downtown economy


Kent State University at Stark will strive to increase and diversify funding streams and reduce costs.

Objective 8.1:  Kent State University at Stark will create and encourage the increase of traditional and non-traditional revenue streams by 

  • Increasing and expanding Advancement opportunities and efforts
    • Institutionalizing a culture of philanthropy on campus and among alumni
    • Identifying and cultivating alumni to create funding opportunities
    • Developing a campus-focused annual campaign
  • Increasing grant opportunities and funding
  • Determining realistic and sustainable enrollment goals to meet future operating budgets
    • Supporting the creation of a dedicated research position in Institutional Research for the regional campuses
  • Engaging alumni more in the campus community
    • Hiring an alumni relations coordinator
    • Developing appropriate processes to identify alumni
    • Increase alumni support for the campus
  • Strengthening course offerings and programs in areas with clear marketability
  • Maximizing enrollment of those degrees that can be completed entirely at Kent State Stark
  • Developing additional high-quality, high-demand online offerings

Objective 8.2:  Kent State University at Stark will develop cost-reduction strategies and budget efficiencies by 

  • Investigating the costs and benefits of selectively developing department operating budgets
  • Continuing strategic hiring and assignment of faculty and staff
  • Evaluating current processes to identify areas of increased efficiencies
  • Examining current business models of campus auxiliaries

Objective 8.3:  Kent State University at Stark will integrate all campus plans, including the conceptual master plan, to manage and accommodate growth 


Kent State University at Stark will act in environmentally responsible ways.  

Objective 9.1:  Kent State University at Stark will enhance recycling, reducing and reusing efforts on campus, engaging students, faculty and staff 

Objective 9.2:  Kent State University at Stark will develop a community education program in sustainability

Objective 9.3:  Kent State University at Stark will name and/or create a position to lead the campus community in sustainability efforts

Objective 9.4:  Kent State University at Stark will commit funding in support of green initiatives, including considering alternative fuel vehicles

Objective 9.5:  Kent State University at Stark will actively engage in community sustainability efforts, ultimately leading them

Objective 9.6:  Kent State University at Stark will actively partner with industry innovators to bring new energy technology to campus