DEVELOPMENT PLAN AIMS TO UNITE COLLEGE COMMUNITY

* Connecticut College's five-year strategic plan is titled "A Time to Lead." The plan, initiated in the 1990-91 academic year, focuses on three primary areas: academics, diversity and campus life, and finances.

"It's a dynamic plan," says Claire Matthews, director of admissions and planning at the college. A committee of faculty, students, and administrators review the plan annually and make alterations as necessary.

Students played an integral role in devising the strategic plan and continue to participate in its implementation and review.

"Their vote counts as much as mine does," says Dirk Held, a professor of classics and chairman of the Priorities, Planning, and Budget Committee, which includes four faculty members, three students, and six administrators.

Ms. Matthews characterizes the strategic plan as Connecticut College's "development menu." It represents the goals and priorities agreed to by all constituencies. "Without the plan, people would be competing for development," she says.

The long-range goals and specific priorities aim to give everyone on the campus a resource for feedback on their own goals. "It's a communication device," Matthews says.

She cautions, however, that "it works because this wasn't a community in crisis. This plan was not put in place to save the college or change it but to strengthen, enrich, and enhance what the college already was."

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