For 125 years, Alma College has enabled students to discover the connection of their deepest passions and the needs of the world through a liberal arts education. We have prepared students for rich lives of leadership and service to community and for challenging, meaningful careers. We have instilled a love of learning that provides personal fulfillment long after our graduates leave the campus. These aspirations will not change. This plan, which will guide our efforts through the 2016-17 academic year, affirms the Alma College mission to “prepare graduates who think critically, serve generously, lead purposefully and live responsibly as stewards of the world they bequeath to future generations” while building on our core values and strengths.
We must sharpen our focus and attract students to Alma by offering each of them a transformative education that integrates their experiences in and out of the classroom. We will be more deliberate in telling students what we expect them to learn in their years at Alma and in bringing them to reflect on their growth here. We will ensure each student an opportunity for an extensive hands-on learning experience to provide context for their academic work and prepare them for their future careers. Further, we will affirm the central place of teaching and learning on Alma’s campus and thereby commit the college to ongoing improvement of student learning and growth. We will make data-driven decisions about the curriculum and co-curriculum alike, based on fit with our mission and our fiduciary responsibilities.
We seek sustainable growth to 1,700 students by fall 2017, not simply for the sake of growth but because the additional resources growth provides will allow us to offer the breadth and depth of educational programs that will best prepare today’s young adult for a rapidly changing world. We envision an Alma that is more representative of America’s diversity and more international, recognizing that our students graduate to interact and compete with students from across the globe. We will create a sustainable campus by persistently studying our impact on our community and our world. We are committed to providing an infrastructure that supports these objectives. In each year of the plan, we will assess progress toward the goal, recognizing that a changing environment may necessitate a shift in direction. Therefore, while we see adherence to the established objectives as essential for success, we will not be so rigid in our approach that we are unable to respond to new opportunities or challenges that may arise. The objectives that follow reflect these commitments.