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Beyond Boundaries

Augusta University's strategic plan begins with the cardinal points on our compass: education, research and scholarship, clinical care, and outreach and economic development. From these points, it provides a course that will guide us as we continue to discover the true potential of this great university and its health system.

Education

Prepare a diverse student body for lifelong contributions to the varied communities in which our students will live and work.

Research & Scholarship

Advance knowledge that addresses the cultural, economic, health and societal needs of the communities we serve through research, scholarship and creativity.

Clinical Care

Provide exceptional patient- and family-centered care across the health continuum.

Outreach & Economic Development

Advance and enrich our impact to local, regional, national and international areas through social, cultural, professional and economic development.

From the President

I am pleased to present Beyond Boundaries, the new strategic plan for Augusta University and Augusta University Health. While we stand proudly and firmly on the foundation of what has been accomplished in our history, we are never satisfied.

We look forward to the pioneering achievements and trailblazing advancements that will be realized through this plan. Beyond Boundaries is a plan that begins with the cardinal points on our compass: education, research, clinical care, and outreach and economic development. From these points, it provides a course that will guide us as we continue to discover the true potential of this great university and its health system.

Go Jags!

Brooks A. Keel, PhD
President, Augusta University
CEO, AU Health System

We are grateful to the many faculty, staff, students, alumni and friends who contributed to the creation of the strategic plan for Augusta University.

Our journey to update our strategic road map began in fall 2016 as we implemented the first phase of our planning process, analyzing the environment and finalizing the process we would use to gather input from our stakeholders. That analysis assessed four areas that are critical to our mission: education, research, clinical care, and outreach and economic development.

The second phase of our planning process reflected our commitment to shared governance and genuine collaboration with our stakeholders. In January 2017, over 3,500 people responded to our survey, which gathered early feedback about what should be included in the new plan. The survey was open to faculty, staff, students, alumni and members of our community. That rich feedback helped shape the draft priorities and goals that were shared with our stakeholders in the spring. Over 700 people responded to a second survey or attended one of the town hall meetings to assist us in refining those priorities and goals even further.

Together we have worked hard to create a plan that defines our priorities and provides a map for the road ahead. But this plan is only the beginning. We look forward to working with you to put this plan into action.

Great things lie ahead for Augusta University!

Gretchen B. Caughman, PhD
EVP, Academic Affairs & Provost

Lee Ann Liska, MBA
CEO, AU Medical Center
EVP, Health Affairs

Strategic Focus Area: Education

Prepare a diverse student body for lifelong contributions to the varied communities in which our students will live and work.

GOAL #1

Recruit and support a diverse student body to progress and develop in an environment that prepares them for their future educational, personal, societal and professional endeavors.

Augusta University is committed to being a destination of choice for high-capability students representing various backgrounds and perspectives. As a member institution of the University System of Georgia, we share a commitment to affordability and value. We will continue to build upon a campus culture wherein degree completion is an expectation. The Augusta University campus is a place where students can thrive as they “learn by doing” inside and outside the classroom, participating in innovative programs, campus organizations, internship opportunities, research projects and other enriching experiences, supported by a student-centered academic environment.

  • Target outreach to a diverse population of high-capability students across Georgia and beyond to promote our undergraduate, graduate and professional degree programs.
  • Raise awareness of Augusta University’s distinctive ability to offer broad multidisciplinary educational programs at the intersection of art and science.
  • Enhance scholarship and academic support for students.
  • Increase student leadership opportunities and engagement.

GOAL #2

Enrich student learning through faculty-led enhancement of our curriculum and delivery within and beyond the classroom.

Augusta University is committed to meeting the evolving needs of our diverse student populations through the continual alignment of rigorous program curricula and student learning outcomes with the standards of the disciplines we serve and with employer and community expectations. Student learning is enriched by integrating interprofessional, multidisciplinary and transdisciplinary educational opportunities using contemporary learner-centered pedagogies. Faculty members’ ability to foster engaged learning by integrating these innovative teaching methods into their classrooms will be supported through faculty development opportunities to ensure effective instructional design and relevant use of technology and through greater efficiencies in course enrollments, schedules, assignments and use of learning spaces.

  • Incorporate high-impact teaching practices, technology-enhanced learning, culturally competent best practices and team-based learning across the curriculum.
  • Increase student experiential learning opportunities through undergraduate research, internships, clinical experiences and study abroad to improve student learning outcomes.
  • Expand learning opportunities that cross disciplines and provide students integrated paths to academic and career success.
  • Provide focused interactions and support as the foundation of a cohesive, caring academic and campus community.

GOAL #3

Strengthen our academic reputation by offering distinctive, high-quality academic programs that leverage our strengths while building enduring relationships with strategic partners.

Augusta University is committed to meeting the needs of Georgia and to enhancing our academic reputation by offering distinctive and high-value academic programs that meet the needs of our students, community and employers. To fulfill this commitment, we will build relationships with industry, military and other academic institutions.

  • Deepen our existing public and private partnerships in the health sciences and biomedical research and seek out new partnership opportunities that leverage our position as Georgia’s only public academic medical center.
  • Increase academic offerings in the new School of Computer and Cyber Sciences to take full advantage of Augusta’s emerging role as Georgia’s cybersecurity hub.
  • Contribute to the intellectual and creative capital of our community, educating the next generation of leaders and engaged citizens.
  • Further develop our system of off-campus instructional and practice sites for high-growth programs.

GOAL #4

Recruit, develop, empower and retain diverse and talented educators who contribute to our mission.

Augusta University is committed to enhancing a faculty that is passionate about academic excellence, student success, teaching innovation and effectiveness, and members’ respective disciplines. We will support an inclusive faculty community which values collaboration, collegiality, professional development and recognition of accomplishments.

  • Empower faculty members to develop their teaching, scholarship and service goals through individualized professional development.
  • Nurture a culture of inclusion and collaboration to inspire the faculty to act as one body that is furthering Augusta University’s reputation and success.
  • Recognize faculty efforts to provide a student-centered environment as part of a caring academic and campus community.

Strategic Focus Area: Research & Scholarship

Advance knowledge that addresses the cultural, economic, health and societal needs of the communities we serve through research, scholarship and creativity.

GOAL #1

Enhance discovery and innovation through an interdisciplinary and translational approach to research and scholarship that integrates our programs with partners locally, nationally and internationally.

To expand our campuswide culture of discovery and innovation, we must nurture engagement and collaboration. We will foster a research-focused environment by supporting scholarly activities that result in enhanced external funding, creative contributions and commercialization.

  • Grow the sponsored research portfolio at the University.
  • Grow our biomedical research in areas such as cardiovascular disease, cancer, metabolic disease and neurological disorders to tackle problems that disproportionately affect Georgians.
  • Become a model for statewide coordinated research, leveraging the strengths of our regional campus network and strategic partners.
  • Seek out and support research opportunities that cross health-related and non-health-related disciplines.

GOAL #2

Foster the development of our faculty, staff and students’ various research and creative endeavors through targeted education, training and mentoring efforts.

Augusta University’s legacy is a testament to the curiosity and creativity of our faculty, staff, students and trainees. Our formal degree-yielding programs in research-related disciplines are critical to developing the trailblazers of tomorrow who will build on that legacy. We recognize our responsibility for fueling the passion for discovery and innovation in our faculty and staff so that they will ignite that same passion in their students.

  • Support our faculty, staff, students and trainees’ research programs through professional development opportunities and mentoring programs.
  • Recognize and publicize the research, scholarly and creative contributions and accomplishments of faculty and staff members, students and trainees and align them with professional and academic expectations.
  • Direct pilot funding to develop transdisciplinary research.

GOAL #3

Enhance research infrastructure, support services, resources and operational efficiencies, enabling faculty, staff, students and trainees to successfully pursue research, scholarship and creative endeavors.

Augusta University is committed to supporting its research, scholarship and creative endeavors. Supporting this important work will require us to thoughtfully and effectively integrate resources and services.

  • Improve research administrative processes for the entire life cycle of research funding, including regulatory and compliance support, grant preparation, budgeting and clinical research/trials support.
  • Provide adequate library resources to support our investigators and scholars.
  • Expand the capacity of dedicated information technology systems and teams.
  • Maintain and support existing research facilities, including common core labs.
  • Explore opportunities to expand research facilities.

GOAL #4

Align Augusta University priorities, services and policies to specifically enhance retention of faculty engaged in research, scholarship and creativity and to support recruitment of new faculty dedicated to the mission of a high-impact research university.

Augusta University is committed to building a diverse and outstanding faculty of researchers and scholars who create knowledge across the institution, acknowledging our distinctive role in the biomedical sciences and cybersecurity.

  • Engage in focused, proactive efforts to attract and retain successful researchers as well as rising stars within areas strategic to the institution.
  • Ensure alignment of promotion and tenure policies to support interdisciplinary research collaborations.
  • Increase the number of graduates in inquiry-based degree programs.

Strategic Focus Area: Clinical Care

Provide exceptional patient- and family-centered care across the health continuum.

GOAL #1

Lead the delivery of innovative, value-based health care with a focus on quality, safety, patient experience and service across the state of Georgia and beyond.

Augusta University is committed to providing unparalleled, value-based, high-quality and accessible patient- and family-centered care in the state of Georgia and beyond.

  • Continue to enhance our infrastructure to support the Center for Rural Health Support and Study.
  • Develop new strategies to address population health with a focus on innovative value-based health care initiatives.
  • Optimize care offerings across the continuum of care to improve health care delivery and outcomes.

GOAL #2

Advance and sustain a culture of performance excellence that maximizes operational and resource stewardship, enhances employee pride and results in outstanding service.

Augusta University is committed to optimizing processes for our patients, their families, our employees, our students and our community.

  • Build on a culture of accountability, performance excellence and financial performance.
  • Prioritize continuous improvement of quality and safety outcomes.
  • Foster continuous improvement of employee and provider engagement.
  • Focus on a combination of patient access and preferences to improve service excellence.
  • Align and integrate health system governance and organizational structures to effectively support these objectives.

GOAL #3

Create the health care workforce of the future through interprofessional collaboration and integration across our clinical, academic and research missions.

Augusta University is committed to creating an environment that supports and encourages collaboration across all missions and integrates those missions into our health system. We will fulfill this commitment by establishing and supporting an open dialogue for interprofessional collaboration across the health system.

  • Focus on patient and family collaboration with interprofessional education.
  • Maximize utilization of interprofessional teams, including learners, in various clinical settings to the fullest extent of their licensure.
  • Leverage our interprofessional commitment to improve faculty and staff recruitment and retention.
  • Continue our progress toward Magnet designation and other external recognitions of excellence.

GOAL #4

Provide the clinical environment necessary to deliver the highest-quality patient care across the health continuum.

Augusta University is committed to providing the best clinical environment for our patients and their families. As the state’s only public academic medical center, we will leverage the combination of our missions to lead in the development of best practices in health care.

  • Use the investments made in information technology to better communicate with patients and their families and to better connect and support our clinicians.
  • Optimize the utilization of the physical space we occupy and remove barriers to efficient delivery of care.
  • Develop and implement a comprehensive infrastructure and support plan, which will address advancements in the delivery of care.

Strategic Focus Area: Outreach & Economic Development

Advance and enrich our impact to local, regional, national and international areas through social, cultural, professional and economic development.

GOAL #1

Expand our academic, public and private partnerships to serve as a catalyst for economic development across the communities we serve.

Augusta University is committed to fostering the economic growth and development of our local community and the state of Georgia. With a presence in over 1,400 educational and clinical locations statewide, Georgia truly is our campus. We will fulfill our commitment by embracing the visions of the communities we serve and leveraging opportunities to make a positive impact on growth. To complement these visions, we will expand and sustain productive partnerships with alumni, other educational and health care institutions, local and state governments, military and defense organizations, nonprofits and social services, and industries and corporations. In particular, we will lead in the development of a workforce rich in education, competencies and civic-mindedness to promote the continuing economic advancement of the communities we serve.

  • Lead initiatives tailored to the workforce needs of Georgia and the Southeast region.
  • Fulfill our unique responsibility to create a healthier, more prosperous state and nation; we will train the next generation of health care professionals while enhancing the size and prestige of our residency programs.
  • Strengthen partnerships with our clinical and teaching sites across the state and seek strategic opportunities to expand our footprint, recognizing that all of Georgia is our campus.
  • Pursue development of the state-approved hospital and Level-2 trauma center in Columbia County and strategically located ambulatory care facilities across the region.
  • Maximize the impact of the state’s investment in the Georgia Cyber Innovation and Training Center.
  • Promote the growth of and contribute to art, music and cultural opportunities throughout the region.

GOAL #2

Positively impact our local and regional communities by engaging in diverse and varied collaborations related to culture, health, knowledge and technology.

Augusta University is committed to serving the needs of citizens in our regional communities. Faculty, staff, students and alumni will fulfill our commitment by providing expertise, skills, talents and passions to our fellow community members in representation of the institution’s respective colleges and units. We will support and enrich the personal and professional development of our community members through services and programs that improve health and quality of life, grow knowledge and increase skills.

  • Foster and support cultural, health care and education outreach to our community and state.
  • Implement initiatives to improve health and promote wellness practices in rural areas through Augusta University’s Center for Rural Health Support and Study.
  • Raise awareness of our professional and continuing education opportunities, ranging from children’s programs to health and professional certification.

GOAL #3

Promote service and outreach to advance academic disciplines and professions served by our mission.

Augusta University is committed to advancing the disciplines and professions we serve through education, research and health care services. We will fulfill this commitment through support for faculty, staff and students participating in their respective professional and educational associations and organizations.

  • Encourage and provide support for faculty and student involvement in activities that promote the disciplines and professions we serve.
  • Enhance infrastructure and support to fully and accurately document and acknowledge professional service.
  • Support faculty-identified opportunities to promote interest in a field of study or practice in alignment with our areas of academic strength.
  • Support active membership, service and leadership in professional and educational associations.

GOAL #4

Leverage our strategic location to facilitate multidisciplinary cyber-related collaboration to increase economic development and outreach.

Augusta University is committed to utilizing the Augusta University School of Computer and Cyber Sciences and the Augusta University Cyber Institute to advance public-private collaborations in cybersecurity. We will fulfill this commitment by building our capacity in the development of cyber-related human capital and research strengthening all facets of the cyber sciences, with a particular emphasis on cyber operations, health security and data science.

  • Lead in the creation of advanced cybersecurity for the pertinent exchange of patient information in the health care environment.
  • Develop research, new curricula and outreach opportunities in cybersecurity.
  • Seek opportunities to partner with the state of Georgia, University System of Georgia, U.S. Army Cyber Command, National Security Agency and other public and private entities that further economic development and cybersecurity priorities.
  • Partner with local, regional and state secondary education systems to generate early interest in cyber and health security fields.

Strategic Planning Team Members

Dr. Brooks Keel, President
Dr. Gretchen Caughman, Provost
Dr. David Hess, Medical College of Georgia
Russell Keen, External Relations
Karla Leeper, Communications & Marketing
Lee Ann Liska, AU Health
Chris Melcher, Legal Affairs & Risk Management
Tony Wagner, Administration & Finance
Jennifer Smith, Project Co-Leader, Finance, AU Health
Mickey Williford, Project Co-Leader, Institutional Effectiveness
Noah Rees, Project Manager, Institutional Effectiveness
Holly Goodson, Institutional Effectiveness
Dr. Carol Lefebvre, Dental College of Georgia
Dr. Julian Nussbaum, AU Medical Associates/Clinical Affairs
Scott Thorp, Pamplin College of Arts, Humanities, & Social Sciences
Dr. Mitch Watsky, The Graduate School
Dr. Ray Whiting, Institutional Effectiveness
Dr. Judi Wilson, College of Education
Dr. Judi Wilson, Team Lead, College of Education
Dr. Olajide Agunloye, College of Education
Dr. Lori Anderson, College of Nursing
Dr. Peter Basciano, Hull College of Business
Dr. Chris Bates, College of Science & Mathematics
Dr. Quincy Byrdsong, Academic Planning & Strategic Initiatives
Dr. Skip Clark, Pamplin College of Arts, Humanities, & Social Sciences
Dr. Kim Gray, Experiential Learning
Dr. Mark Allen Poisel, Enrollment & Student Affairs
Dr. Carol Rychly, Academic & Faculty Affairs
Dr. Tim Sadenwasser, Honors Program
Dr. Paul Wallach, Medical College of Georgia
Dr. Mitch Watsky, Team Lead, The Graduate School
Dr. Adam Berman, Medical College of Georgia
Dr. Askiel Bruno, Medical College of Georgia
Dr. Chris Cutler, Dental College of Georgia
Dr. Michael Diamond, Research Administration
Dr. Sharad Ghamande, Cancer Center/Medical College of Georgia
Mia Jolly, Information Technology
Dr. Nita Maihle, Cancer Center/Medical College of Georgia
Dr. Lin Mei, Medical College of Georgia
Dr. Raghavan Raju, College of Allied Health Sciences
Dr. Saundra Ribando, Pamplin College of Arts, Humanities, & Social Sciences
Dr. John Sutherland, College of Science & Mathematics
Dr. Alvin Terry, Medical College of Georgia
Dr. Carol Lefebvre, Team Lead, Dental College of Georgia
Dr. Julian Nussbaum, Team Lead, AU Health
Dr. Ahmad Al-Basheer, Medical College of Georgia
Dr. Amy Allison, Cancer Center
Dr. Andrew Balas, College of Allied Health Sciences
Laura Brower, Nursing, AU Health
Greg Damron, Finance, AU Health
Dr. Kevin Dellsperger, AU Health
Dr. Ian Heger, Medical College of Georgia
Amanda Hopkins-Tirrell, AU Health
Phil Howard, Facilities
Dr. Lucy Marion, College of Nursing
Joe Thornton, Ambulatory Care Services, AU Health
Shawn Vincent, AU Medical Center
Scott Thorp, Team Lead, Pamplin College of Arts, Humanities, & Social Sciences
Dr. Michelle Bryan, College of Education
Dr. Megan Buning, College of Education
Rob Dennis, Advancement
Dr. Yanbin Dong, Medical College of Georgia
Susan Everitt, Alumni Affairs
Dr. Andrew Goss, Pamplin College of Arts, Humanities, & Social Sciences
Dr. Anna Harris, Pamplin College of Arts, Humanities, & Social Sciences
Dr. Rickey Hicks, College of Science & Mathematics
Teri Mobley, Strategic Partnerships
Joanne Sexton, Cyber Institute
Michael Shaffer, Government Relations
Dr. Mark Thompson, Hull College of Business
Dr. Lovoria Williams, College of Nursing
Mickey Williford, Team Lead, Institutional Effectiveness
Dr. Lorraine Evans, Center for Academic Success
Holly Goodson-Rubio, Institutional Effectiveness
Aubrey Hinkson, Communications and Marketing
Gail Kouame, University Libraries
Tara Montroy, Finance
Stacie Pankow, Institutional Effectiveness
Dr. Elizabeth Pendergraft, College of Education
Chris Weldon, Institutional Effectiveness
Dr. Ray Whiting, Team Lead, Institutional Effectiveness
Dr. Kevin Frazier, Dental College of Georgia
Karen Gutmann, Communications & Marketing
Dr. Paulette Harris, College of Education
Megan Lameka, Graduate Student Designee
Dr. Kathryn Martin, Medical College of Georgia
Dr. Lester Pretlow, College of Allied Health Sciences
Raysean Ricks, Undergraduate Student Designee
Connie Sutton, Human Resources
Deborah Wright, Employee Advisory Council

The potential in Augusta University and Augusta University Health is boundless. We are a diverse community of faculty, staff, students, alumni, caregivers and friends, but we are united in our purpose to provide leadership and excellence in teaching, discovery, clinical care and service. I look forward to seeing all that we will achieve as we work together.

Brooks A. Keel
Augusta University President