Westphal Strategic Plan: Westphal For All
At Westphal, we never stop striving to be at the forefront of our fields. Westphal's Strategic Plan will ensure that our college leverages its strengths, addresses critical challenges affecting the future of our fields, and becomes a more diverse, equitable, inclusive and anti-racist college within Drexel University and in our world. Join us in our ambitious work to design the future of our college, a Westphal For All.
The Future of Westphal College
After a year-long strategic planning process, we are proud to share our new strategic plan, Westphal For All: A Vision For Our Future (2022-2026).
The Antoinette Westphal College for Media Arts & Design will actively lead innovation at Drexel University, integrating our creative solutions and design thinking capabilities with the University’s strategic plan, Drexel 2030 Strategic Plan, and support the University through today’s social and global challenges and into the future.
Our new strategic plan for the Antoinette Westphal College of Media Arts & Design is the result of an inclusive process that will shape our future as we embark on the next five years. Our process was broadly inclusive and deliberative, reaching all Westphal stakeholders inside and outside of our College. Our six-stage strategic planning framework gathered comprehensive feedback and data from all Westphal stakeholders, including students, faculty, staff, alumni, industry leaders, community members, and all key units within the University (see our timeline and process in the full report). Our mission, vision, and values lay the groundwork for our future, and our strategies will lead to fulfilling our goals:
Identified Areas of Focus
After extensive review and analysis of all feedback and data from our stakeholders, seven areas of focus emerged that shape the goals of our strategic plan. In analyzing this feedback and data, we clearly heard and recognize that diversity, equity, inclusion, and anti-racism must be deliberatively embedded into our goals and strategies. These goals represent ambitious, bold statements that will guide our future work as a college.
For each of our goals, stakeholders from within and outside Westphal shared specific ways that each goal could be achieved. Hundreds of ideas were collected and compiled. Our strategies were determined by grouping these ideas into their common elements.
Enhance the Westphal student experience to create a strong sense of belonging by ensuring all students have the resources and educational experiences they need to launch their careers and engage in their communities.
Ensure that all Westphal faculty are supported, rewarded, and provided with the resources, professional development, and opportunities for continued growth and success.
Ensure that all Westphal staff can excel in their roles through the intentional and equitable creation of opportunities for collaboration, efficiency, and professional growth.
Curricular Infrastructure & Innovation
Enrich Westphal curricula through collaborative approaches, continuous enhancement, and new learning methods that provide our students with the knowledge, skills, and abilities to succeed in a rapidly changing world.
Research Scholarship & Creative Work
Expand scope, reach, and impact of Westphal faculty's research, scholarship, and creative work by leveraging our specialized knowledge and expertise, fostering transdisciplinary collaborations, and developing a robust culture of inquiry.
Identity & Communications
Elevate Westphal's external presence and internal communications through a visual and narrative identity that articulates its unique value, strengthens community and industry relations, and reflects our values.
Facilities & Operations
Establish a cohesive and expanded physical and technological presence for Westphal that provides equitable and efficient access to the facilities, tools, and resources necessary to innovate, collaborate, and grow.
Implementation: Putting Our Plan Into Action
To successfully implement our plan, we will create an implementation process that is as inclusive and comprehensive as our planning process. We must leverage our individual and collective expertise and create the time, space, and support necessary to empower everyone to play a leadership role in implementing our strategies.
The College has many existing structures that will be mobilized to implement our plan. These structures will provide leadership and guidance in implementing specific strategies related to areas of expertise and responsibility:
The Faculty Caucus and its standing committees will play an important role in leading the implementation of strategies that relate to curricula, scholastic standards, and faculty affairs.
Our Academic Council comprises the senior faculty and staff leadership within the college. Their role in our plan’s implementation will be to actively participate in and lead the implementation of specific strategies that require coordination among all Westphal departments.
Staff Advisory Council
Our Staff Advisory Council, comprised of professional staff who advise the college on ways to improve how our staff support and manage our operations, will implement strategies that seek to improve our efficiency, effectiveness, and operations.
The Westphal Research Council provides support and leadership to all Westphal faculty engaged in their own research, scholarship, and creative work (RSC), as well as promoting collaborative, interdisciplinary research within the University and with external partners, building a Westphal culture that embraces RSC.
The members of the Westphal Dean’s Council serve as outside advisors to the Dean and act as advocates and ambassadors on behalf of the Antoinette Westphal College of Media Arts & Design. Members of the Dean’s Council, many of whom are Westphal or Drexel alumni, are senior leaders in a variety of creative industries.
The members of the Student Council advise the Dean and Westphal leadership on how to create the best student experience, serve as liaisons to our student body, and ultimately, use their voice to shape the future of the college.
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Council
Following the lead of Drexel University’s Anti-Racism Task Force, Westphal’s Strategic Planning Task Force unanimously decided that issues surrounding diversity, equity, inclusion and anti-racism are critical to address within the larger plan for Westphal’s future and its surrounding communities. The DEI Council would determine the implementation process for and guide the implementation of Westphal's DEI and Anti-Racism strategies.
Implementing our plan will also require new ways of working together, with faculty, staff, and college leadership:
This new initiative provides opportunities for faculty to enhance their careers through partnership with the Dean’s Office to address relevant topics that have emerged from our strategic planning process. Dean’s Fellows will be given the time and resources to lead the implementation of specific strategies aligned with their expertise.
Ad-hoc Working Groups
We will also leverage ad-hoc working groups to create new teams of faculty and staff who are committed to addressing specific strategies from our plan. These existing and proposed groups include, among others: Graduate Programs and Lifelong Learning, Facilities and Information Technology, Incentivizing interdisciplinary research and teaching, Mobilizing Creativity and Design at Drexel, and Anti-Racism and DEI initiatives.
Measuring Success And Holding Ourselves Accountable
Throughout the implementation of our strategic plan, we will consistantly measure success and hold ourselves accountable. For each of our 46 strategies that have been prioritized for each of our seven goals, the first step we will take is to define what success looks like and identify the metrics that will determine that we’ve succeeded. This task will be undertaken by Academic Council, with assistance from Faculty Caucus, after the plan is published. A public dashboard will be made available to ensure accountability and regular monitoring of progress.