Redefining the Horizon: Strategic Plan 2015-2018

Mission Statement 

Drury University is an independent university, church-related in the liberal arts tradition, and committed to personalized education in a community of scholars who value the arts of teaching and learning. Education at Drury seeks to cultivate spiritual sensibilities and imaginative faculties as well as ethical insight and critical thought; to foster the integration of theoretical and practical knowledge; and to liberate persons to participate responsibly in and contribute to a global community.

Vision Statement

With abiding commitments to our heritage and with renewed commitments to the global community and innovative teaching and scholarship, Drury University will be a premier university where the finest teacher/scholars and professional staff educate students to become engaged, ethical and compassionate citizens for servant leadership in communities characterized by change, complexity and global interdependence.

To become the premier university in the 21st Century that we envision, we will create and demonstrate Drury University’s competitive edge, articulate its competitive differences, align all of its academic programs with strategic objectives, build endowment to support its strategic objectives, measure its success and manage by results. The Strategic Imperatives and Objectives detailed below map our path for the years 2015-2018 and position Drury University to celebrate its sesquicentennial in 2023.

Strategic Imperatives 

  1. We will strengthen academic initiatives and create new distinctive offerings that respond to the demands of the 21st century. 
  2. We will increase the enrollment of Drury University such that carrying capacity is optimized.
  3. We will improve student experience and the culture of student affairs.
  4. We will ensure that the Drury University campus environments respond to the needs of students in the 21st century. 
  5. We will sharpen the Drury brand and distinctiveness.
  6. We will strengthen Drury University's community outreach. 
  7. We will create a financial platform to ensure Drury University's viability and sustainability.
  8. We will ensure that Drury University attracts, retains and invests in faculty and staff necessary to accomplish its mission in the context of the 21st century.
  9. We will create a campus environment of transparency and openness.
  10. We will build greater development capacity, enhance external resources to support strategic objectives and cultivate an alumni/donor base that will be pivotal to the success of Drury University.  

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Strategic Imperative 1: We will strengthen academic initiatives and create new distinctive offerings that respond to the demands of the 21st century


  1. Design and initiate at least three new undergraduate and three new graduate degree offerings that are high impact, interdisciplinary and distinctive. 

  2. Complete a review of all CCPS academic offerings and use results to create improvements in curricula and new offerings.

  3. Complete and evaluate Drury University’s global education by reviewing international initiatives, strengthen those in need of such, eliminate those that are no longer relevant and propose new initiatives.

  4. Institute a process and timeline for regular review of all curricula to assure rigor and currency.

  5. Institutionalize a rigorous process of academic assessment of learning outcomes consistent with the Drury University Mission, with the distinctive Drury characteristics of blended liberal arts and professional studies, with the commitment to engaged learning and with the desired qualities valued by society and the 21st Century marketplace.

  6. Create processes, opportunities and incentives to ensure that technology is thoroughly blended into instruction, instructional management, learning and research.

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Strategic Imperative 2: We Will Increase the Enrollment of Drury University Such That Carrying Capacity Is Optimized.


  1. Determine optimal carrying capacity and establish three-year enrollment goals for Day, Graduate, Online, Dual Credit, CCPS units and for sub-populations of transfer and international students.

  2. Improve Day School enrollment market share in Springfield, St. Louis and Kansas City markets by ten percent in each market; begin investing in selected new geographic markets after thorough research.
  3. Improve retention of first year students to 86 percent by expanding retention analysis and remedies to include departmental, degree program, transfer and international student detail.

  4. Launch all pending academic and institutional partnerships; create at least two new partnerships each year.

  5. Transition Strategic Enrollment Planning into a permanent Strategic Enrollment Management structure; create new goals and objectives that support this effort integrate into individual departments, colleges and schools.

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Strategic Imperative 3: We Will Improve Student Experience and the Culture of Student Affairs.


  1. Improve student academic planning experience by instituting an academic plan for each student

  2. Invest in and improve the Career Planning and Placement experience for all Drury students.

  3. Reactivate the Council on Sustainability and set campus energy-saving goals.

  4. Assess the quality of student and residential life, athletic and intramural integration, and institute improvements.

  5. Ensure that processes and campus culture are characterized by personal respect and safety, a sense of community inclusion, and personal, emotional and spiritual wellness.

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Strategic Imperative 4: We Will Ensure That the Drury University Campus Environments Respond to the Needs of Students in the 21st Century.


  1. Create and adopt a new Drury University Campus Master Plan.

  2. Assess and evaluate all deferred maintenance needs and adopt a plan to address such.

  3. Assess and evaluate all learning spaces at all Drury University sites and adopt a plan to address the needs.

  4. Assess and evaluate all living and residence-hall facilities and adopt a plan to address the needs.

  5. Assess and evaluate all recreation and athletic facilities and adopt a plan to address the needs.

  6. Assess and evaluate the technology infrastructure at all Drury University sites and adopt a plan to address the needs

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Strategic Imperative 5: We Will Sharpen the Drury Brand and Distinctiveness.


  1. Determine the public perceptions of the Drury brand and the ‘peaks of distinction’

  2. Evaluate and revise the marketing and communication plan based on outcomes of brand perception study and the outcomes of objectives in Strategic Initiative 1

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Strategic Imperative 6: We Will Strengthen Drury University’s Community Outreach.


  1. Assess the progress of “Drury Connect Initiative” and strengthen its role as a facilitator of the mission and brand of Drury University in the 21st Century.

  2. Evaluate all Drury University community outreach initiatives for their impact on both Drury and the wider community; recommend pathways for continued and stronger future outreach.

  3. Create opportunities for professional community engagement with Drury University’s academic and administrative departments

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Strategic Imperative 7: We Will Create a Financial Platform to Ensure Drury University’s Viability and Sustainability.


  1. Increase and thereafter maintain Board established university reserves of at least $3 million.

  2. Refine operational, financial, technological and communication processes such that overall financial predictability is constantly improved.

  3. Improve financial performance of each school such that all are financially independent and generating pre-depreciation net revenue.

  4. Using the results of the evaluations in Strategic Imperative 4, design a financial plan to address the funding of depreciation and deferred

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Strategic Imperative 8: We Will Ensure that Drury University Attracts, Retains and Invests in Faculty and Staff Necessary to Accomplish Its Mission in the Context of the 21st Century.


  1. Create a Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence

  2. Create and fund more opportunities for professional faculty and staff development.

  3. Design a plan and timeline for improving faculty and staff compensation.

  4. Adjust faculty teaching loads to reflect capacity, research demands, departmental and university service needs, administrative duties and co-curricular assignments.

  5. Set goals that will result in greater gender equity and ethnic diversity.

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Strategic Imperative 9: We Will Create a Campus Environment of Transparency and Openness.


  1. Simplify internal financial reporting and report such internally more frequently.

  2. Implement more robust data-driven analytics into decision-making.

  3. Implement a more varied and frequent internal communication mechanism.

  4. Evaluate every organizational structure and implement changes and improvements for greater efficiency and effectiveness.

  5. Implement bi-semester campus-wide forums or other mechanisms to report to the community on progress of all Strategic Imperatives

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Strategic Imperative 10: We Will Build Greater Development Capacity, Enhance External Resources to Support Strategic Objectives and Cultivate an Alumni/Donor Base that Will Be Pivotal to the Success of Drury University.


  1. Establish regional alumni councils in the top five alumni markets and support volunteers in up to five secondary markets.

  2. Establish regular alumni surveying and feedback opportunities, and with Marketing and Communications, assess feedback and output to assist both alumni and students

  3. Establish an internal process that will determine development and funding priorities.

  4. Increase unrestricted and annual scholarship gift revenues fifteen percent annually to sustain funding of over $1 million annually.
  5. Increase restricted and special project (non-scholarship) gift revenues ten percent annually.

  6. Increase funding for endowed scholarships ten percent annually.

  7. Complete the plan for a capital campaign to coincide with the sesquicentennial celebration of Drury University in 2023.

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