Skip to content

Rutgers—Camden administrators share insights into 2023-2028 Strategic Plan

The Daily Targum spoke with the co-chairs of the University committee responsible for the development of Rutgers—Camden's 2023-2028 Strategic Plan, which was made public in November. – Photo by Rutgers University—Camden / Facebook

Rutgers—Camden Chancellor Antonio Tillis recently rolled out the 2023-2028 Strategic Plan, a five-pronged initiative aimed at improving University operations.

Marsha Lowery, the vice chancellor of Student Academic Success at the Camden campus, said Tillis, who started his term as chancellor two years ago, used his first year to absorb and understand the campus before formulating the benchmarks that would make up the plan.

"It helps to … guide everyone's work on campus because the work that we do should, in some way, shape or form, align to the strategic plan priorities," Lowery said.

She said she co-chaired the plan's steering committee alongside Jane Siegel, a professor in the Department of Sociology, Anthropology and Criminal Justice. Lowery and Siegel were responsible for planning and hosting discussions, collaborating with external groups, delegating staff to subcommittees and drafting the plan, according to Lowery.

Siegel, who served as the associate dean for Undergraduate Education at the Camden campus' College of Arts and Sciences for much of the plan's development, explained that they organized the plan into five pillars, the first of which is "Innovation in Academic Excellence."

"The idea is that we would expand our program offerings at all levels, and develop some non-traditional educational opportunities, and (support) different kinds of innovations programmatically," Siegel said. "That includes expanding our undergraduate, our graduate (and) our professional programs (and) focusing on some non-traditional education opportunities ... we know that there's a lot of people out there who have some college (but) who haven't finished college, who might be interested in things like that."

The second pillar is "Transformative Student Success," which entails the development of a campus culture and community, Siegel said. These issues are especially prominent at the Camden campus due to its large student commuter population, she said.

The third pillar, known as "Holistic Student Experience," explores strengthening bonds with stakeholders such as future Rutgers—Camden students from local community colleges, alumni and the city of Camden, Siegel said.

"One of the other things in the plan, as you'll see, is recruiting more Camden city residents — recruiting them and making sure they're successful while they're here (and) building out more certificate programs, as I mentioned. So, those things will impact the community as a whole, as we're able to have a bigger educated populace by offering these things as an anchor institution in Camden city," Lowery said.

The fourth pillar is "Beloved Camden Community," which focuses on faculty needs, such as a 10-year building plan, Siegel said. The Daily Targum asked Siegel about salary disparities experienced by Rutgers—Camden professors. She responded, saying the plan does not address this issue.

The fifth and final pillar is "Internationalization," which would be measured by international admission and enrollment statistics, the Camden campus's international recognition and its bonds with educational institutions abroad, Siegel said.

"Here, we want to really bridge divides between nations (and) to create global connections for stakeholders,” she said.

Upon completing the first draft of the Strategic Plan, Lowery and Siegel put it through three levels of revisions from Tillis, his cabinet and University President Jonathan Holloway, Lowery said.

Lowery said that there have already been efforts made to raise awareness around the plan upon its official release, including University-wide emails to open the plan to student input in its developmental stages, as well as a public release event on November 29 that saw approximately 200 to 250 attendees.

She said that, as an accountability measure, the University will send out occasional progress reports to the community, and Tillis will be hosting an address to communicate achievements and additional plans.

Furthermore, Lowery said that students will have the opportunity to express their thoughts to an implementation committee, for which they will receive sign-up information about in the future.

"2026 will be our 100th year at Rutgers—Camden. So, part of the goal of the strategic plan is to be able to highlight all the things that we've accomplished over that 100-year history but also speak to our new initiatives," Lowery said.

Related Articles

Join our newsletterSubscribe