Strategic Plan 2008-13


The Strategic Plan 2008-2012 was extended through 2013 by action of the Board of Trustees in September 2012. Progress toward completion of 2008 Strategic Plan is shown here:

Appalachian State University's Strategic Plan 2008-2012, titled "Reach Greater Heights," was formally adopted by the Board of Trustees in 2008 and comprised six priorities designed to propel the institution to produce the highest level of scholarship while continuing to attract, educate and graduate exceptional students. These priorities related to curricula, research, quality of faculty and staff, outreach, the university's mountain setting, and management of institutional resources.

Key outcomes of "Reach Greater Heights" included:

  1. A revised general education curriculum, adopted for incoming freshmen in Fall 2009, to help students analyze the world around them from different perspectives, communicate their ideas and understand the ideas of others, know how to solve problems, and apply that knowledge to real-world projects. These are skills employers say they value as much as or more than skills specific to their field.
  2. Establishment of the College of Health Sciences in 2010 to actively address the health and wellness needs of North Carolina and the nation by training high-quality health professionals. This was achieved by reorganizing and bolstering existing health-related academic departments and programs and adding a four-year degree in nursing.
  3. Construction of a new College of Education building in 2011 to serve the growing number of new teachers needed by the state and region.
  4. Establishment of the Research Institute for Environment, Energy and Economics in 2008 to enhance faculty and student research, environmental academic programs, outreach and science education; and creation of an Office of Sustainability to develop and implement university policies, practices and programs.
  5. Funding for eight additional distinguished professorships to enhance teaching and scholarship.
  6. Increased diversity on campus through the recruitment of more international students and faculty, and a greater percentage of students from underrepresented populations.
  7. The addition of a Bachelor of Science degree in fermentation sciences degree program, which began accepting students in Fall 2012. The program prepares students for careers in the fermented foods and beverages industry, bio-processing fields such as fuels, and the pharmaceutical industry.


August 2006

Chancellor announces the development of a new strategic plan and appoints a Planning Advisory Council:

  • Stan Aeschleman, Chair, Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor
  • Cindy Wallace, Vice Chancellor for Student Development
  • Greg Lovins, Interim Vice Chancellor for Business Affairs
  • Bob Lyman, Dean, College of Arts and Sciences
  • Tony Calamai, Chair, Council of Chairs
  • Martha Marking, Chair, Faculty Senate
  • Charlie Wallin, President, Staff Council
  • Forrest Gilliam, President, Student Government Association
  • Bobby Sharp (ex officio), Director, Institutional Research, Assessment and Planning

The Planning Advisory Council is charged to oversee the planning process, organize the macro and micro strategic planning activities, study the important issues facing the university, assign tasks to short-term work groups and to campus staff, set timelines, collect information, and generate planning materials and products.

October 2006

First Open Forum conducted by Provost Aeschleman to provide a:

  1. Profile of the University;
  2. Summary of the External Context for the Planning Process; and
  3. Description of the Planning Process.

Strategic Planning Open Forum Presentation (PPT, 1.21 MB) (PDF, 268 KB) (Adobe Acrobat file distorts some slides)

Planning Advisory Council holds a day-long retreat to begin to identify core values, core assets, and essential character of Appalachian, and to propose Strategic Directions for consideration by the Strategic Planning Commission.

November 2006

Open invitation extended to campus community seeking volunteers and nominations to serve on the Strategic Planning Commission.

Planning Advisory Council holds a half-day retreat to propose membership of the Strategic Planning Commission, which Chancellor Peacock approved.

December 2006

Chancellor Peacock sends letters of invitation to proposed commission members assigning membership to subcommittees and announcing a half-day Strategic Planning Commission retreat on January 5, 2007.

January 2007

Strategic Planning Commission holds a half-day retreat to discuss the Planning Advisory Council's proposed Strategic Directions, and subcommittees begin to develop strategic objectives for discussion and possible inclusion in the Strategic Plan.

Strategic Planning Commission Forum Presentation (PPT, 617 KB) (PDF, 85 KB)

April 26, 2007

Deadline for submission of final reports from subcommittees; these reports form the basis for the development of the 2008 Strategic Plan:

Summer to Fall 2007

Planning Advisory Council reviews the reports and develops the draft of Appalachian's Strategic Plan.

Fall 2007

Strategic Planning Commission meets to discuss the draft Strategic Plan. Draft is made available on the Strategic Planning website and distributed to groups within and outside of Appalachian for feedback.

Spring 2008

Public forum is held to discuss the draft of Appalachian's Strategic Plan.

Strategic Planning Open Forum Presentation (PPT, 2.02 MB) (PDF, 168 KB)

Revised draft of the Strategic Plan is prepared to incorporate feedback. Planning Advisory Council affirms final draft of Appalachian's Strategic Plan. Final draft of Appalachian's Strategic Plan is presented to the Chancellor for comment and approval. Final draft is presented to the Board of Trustees for comment and approval. Final changes to the plan are made to reflect input from the Chancellor and the Board of Trustees.

Fall 2008

Unit plans are developed within the context of the Strategic Plan.

September 11, 2008

Board of Trustees approves Strategic Plan 2008-2012: Reach Greater Heights (PDF, 2.10 MB).

Reach Greater Heights


These links connect to documents, organizations, and information clearinghouses that provide a context within which Appalachian engages in strategic and tactical planning. Although not exhaustive, these references (a) provide a common language for the campus community to use in conversations about the university's present and future and (b) serve as key sources of information to guide the university's planning efforts at both macro and micro levels.

  • NCAA Cycle 3 Certification Self-Study (add link)

UNC References



General Resources

National Discussions

Professional Organizations

UNC Tomorrow Responses

Directives for responding to the UNC Tomorrow Commission's Final Report, released in December, 2007, were received by the Chancellor on Tuesday, January 22, 2008. Campus responses to those directives will require an extensive review of current operations, programs, and policies, and the response must be integrated with Appalachian's Strategic Plan. Much of the campus' response involves stating plans to implement the UNC Tomorrow Findings during June 2008-January 2012. Successive due dates for Appalachian's responses can be seen in the timeline below, beginning February 15 and extending until December, 2008. Documents prepared to comply with the UNC Tomorrow Response Phase Planning Process will be posted as they become available.