Remember that amazing moment when you realized Fairfield was the school for you? Something just clicked. It might have been the small classroom sizes, the Jesuit values, or the proximity to the beach; whatever it was, you knew it was where you belonged. Although Fairfield might be the perfect school for you, we understand that there is no such thing as the perfect school, and even Stag Country has room for improvement.
You know those days when you’re sick of Barone and you think to yourself, “I wish Fairfield had a better dinning hall”. What about when you’re planning next semesters schedule and have to take physics as an English major and you’re frustrated because you don’t understand the core? We all say, “I wish Fairfield did this” and, “why doesn’t Fairfield have that?” I have good news. Instead of wishing for something different, you can actually help create something different by participating in Fairfield 2020.
Fairfield 2020 is the unique opportunity that allows us as students to turn the ideas that we’re passionate about into reality. Many of you have probably seen the flyers around campus, but most of you are probably still not clear on what Fairfield 2020 really means.
“What exactly is Fairfield 2020?”Fairfield University is refreshing the University’s Strategic Plan, and calling it “Fairfield 2020: Building a More Sustainable Future.” A Steering Committee has commissioned 10 task forces who are each charged to focus on an area of University programming or operations. The task forces look at the challenges that are currently being faced in that area, and report it back to the Steering Committee. The task forces and Steering Committee will work together in order to complete a consolidated report, and implement the plans in spring of 2015.
“Where do I come in?”You come in on the task forces. Each task forces holds open meetings that students are highly encouraged to attend. This is your chance to turn those wishes into plans, and have your voice be heard. These are the task forces:
Total School Experience: How can we renew and invigorate the total school experience for undergraduate, graduate and continuing education students?
Affordability: How can we avoid excessive student debt?
Core Curriculum: Are we following the Jesuit and Catholic tradition and building competencies for intellectual life with an interdisciplinary focus?
Student Outcomes: How can we ensure students are prepared to fulfill aspirations in the workplace, graduate school, or public service?
Candidates of the Future: How can we create an environment that reaches out to and welcomes diverse students, faculty and staff in a way that recognizes the changing demographics of our candidate pools and become an “institution of choice,” for prospective students.
Pedagogical Innovation: What makes us different?
Business Model: How can we build and implement a new business model that broadens our revenue?
Back Office Operations: Where can we cut costs? The task force is currently taking submissions for identifying process/ procedures that seem labor intensive.
Continuing Education: How can we re-launch our continuing education and non-degree based programs?
Professional and Graduate Schools: How can we enhance the quality, stature and identity of the graduate and professional schools?
The Steering Committee met this past Wednesday, April 2, and they are eager for students to get involved. Clicking each task force link will allow you to see their agenda and meeting schedule.
If you’re passionate about something that you think Fairfield University should be doing, or needs to improve on, then Fairfield 2020 wants you to take initiative. By working with faculty, staff, and alum, we the students can help improve Fairfield University.