Inclusive Excellence planning process summary

UAF has launched a process to create its own Inclusive Excellence Strategic Plan.


What is "inclusive excellence"?

Here's a summary from a briefing paper presented as part of the Making Excellence Inclusive initiative by the American Association of Colleges and Universities:

AACU logo

"Inclusive Excellence re-envisions both quality and diversity. It reflects a striving for excellence in higher education that has been made more inclusive by decades of work to infuse diversity into recruiting, admissions, and hiring; into the curriculum and co-curriculum; and into administrative structures and practices. It also embraces newer forms of excellence, and expanded ways to measure excellence, that take into account research on learning and brain functioning, the assessment movement, and more nuanced accountability structures. In the same way, diversity and inclusion efforts move beyond numbers of students or numbers of programs as end goals. Instead, they are multilayered processes through which we achieve excellence in learning; research and teaching; student development; institutional functioning; local and global community engagement; workforce development; and more."

—"Towards a Model of Inclusive Excellence & Change in Post-Secondary Institutions," Damon Williams, University of Connecticut, and Joseph Berger and Shederick McClendon, University of Massachusetts

Spring-fall 2020 expected results

  • Action-oriented plan to chart a clear path forward transferring ideas into action;
  • Strategies, goals and objectives;
  • Resource/fiscal plan to support each strategy;
  • Accountability through individual responsibility, reporting to leadership and university community; and
  • Continuous evaluation and modification of the plan.

Phases and timeline

graphic phases meter with current phase indicated as phase six of six.

Six phases of Vision Navigation strategic planning


Phase 1

Strategic planning discovery, orientation and detailed project scheduling

(Project lead)
March-April 2020 (delays due to COVID-19)
  • General information gathered and planning team created
  • Planning process established and scheduled
  • Pertinent documents gathered, such as current product/service offerings, existing purpose statement, values, vision, documentation, and related projects or initiatives.

Phase 2

Develop the vision

(Core team)
May-June 2020 (delays due to COVID-19)
  • Key foundational elements identified: Purpose, Vision, Values, and Lessons learned
  • Public feedback session conducted with students, employees and community members
  • Foundational elements presented to UAF Core Cabinet Team

Phase 3

Complete assessment

(Core team)
June-August 2020
  • Strategic assessment conducted with internal and external environmental scan
  • Potential growth opportunities identified
  • Potential internal improvement opportunities identified
  • Strategic initiatives identified

Phase 4

Affirm the vision and determine the strategic agenda

(Core team)
August 2020
  • Foundational elements finalized
  • Strategic agenda finalized

Phase 5

Project planning

(Core team members with new strategic initiative team members)
September-October 2020
  • Detailed project plans to be developed for key strategic initiatives and internal improvement projects
  • Inclusive Excellence Strategic Plan website goes live
  • Vision Navigation® chart created with quarterly outcomes and accountability for each project
  • Begin use of Vision Navigation® project management tool.


Phase 6


(Project team leads with expanded project team members)
Begins October-November 2020
  • Monthly meetings begin with plan lead and initiative leads for updates and team collaborations on similar projects.
  • Continuously monitor, evaluate and update plan
  • Quarterly progress reports to leadership and university community


Plan lead:

  • Margo Griffith, UAF Diversity Officer, Department of Equity and Compliance

Facilitation and support:

The UAF Process Improvement & Training (PIT) Crew, in partnership with Professional Growth Systems, is facilitating the Inclusive Excellence Strategic Planning effort using the Vision Navigation® strategic planning approach. The UAF PIT Crew will provide ongoing facilitation support for quarterly accountability check-ins and to modify the plan, as needed.

Other related plans

A west-facing aerial view of the Fairbanks campus in autumn

UAF chancellor's strategic plan

Our accreditation themes of Educate, Research, Prepare, Connect and Engage help describe what we do. In addition, the UA system has goals for UAF in the broad areas of degree attainment, research, and workforce and economic development. Mindful of this context, we have a renewed focus around who we are and what we aspire to be. One of the six goals within the chancellor's strategic plan is to embrace and grow a culture of respect, diversity, inclusion and caring at UAF. To see this committee's work and progress, go to the chancellor's strategic goals website

  1. Modernize the student experience
  2. Solidify our global leadership in Alaska Native and Indigenous programs
  3. Achieve Tier 1 research status
  4. Transform UAF’s intellectual property development and commercialization enterprise
  5. Embrace and grow a culture of respect, diversity, inclusion and caring
  6. Revitalize key academic programs

students seated in a circle in Cornerstone Plaza raise their hands during an outdoor summer class

UAF Strategic Enrollment Planning

This group incorporates diversity and inclusion within the student enrollment planning strategy. Currently, phase 4 is underway. To learn more about this process and the status, go to the Strategic Enrollment Planning website.