Creative Education for the Future: A New Strategic Plan for Pratt Institute
Approved by Pratt Institute’s Board of Trustees, May 9, 2019
Following upon the inaugural year of our twelfth president Frances Bronet, Pratt Institute remains committed to transformative academic excellence in architecture, art, design, information studies, and the liberal arts and sciences, building upon our defining history in order to address current and future challenges in education and our world.
From its founding by Charles Pratt in 1887, the Institute has been remarkably inclusive. In almost every discipline, we were among the first colleges in the United States to welcome students of every background, regardless of social standing, race, or gender, offering opportunity to a new diverse professional class, anchored in our surrounding communities.
Today, at a time when the value of higher education is in question, and our own impact on our environment is growing faster than it can be addressed, Pratt Institute is committed to providing collaborative, interdisciplinary, solutions-based education that will help our students successfully address the challenges ahead, now and throughout their careers. We recognize that the face-to-face, nimble learning laboratory that we create here at Pratt, in a manner unique to creative education, prepares our students for future collaborations within and across disciplines, and for lives rich with creative possibility.
In recent years, several initiatives have laid the foundation for the current strategic planning process. Ongoing efforts for sustainability, accessibility, affordability, student success and well-being, curriculum and technological development, master planning for our campuses and physical plants, and collaborations with organizations and communities beyond our gates, locally and globally, have worked in tandem with one another and with the recently completed Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Strategic Plan to lay the foundation of our new strategic plan for Pratt Institute.
These important themes run throughout all of the following pillars, overlap, and are interwoven into one another, in a way that mirrors Pratt Institute’s desire to break down silos and collaborate on our signature values. By implementing the goals and initiatives of this plan, we continue Charles Pratt’s legacy and our history, and will secure our distinctive leadership role in the landscape of art and design education.
Development of the New Strategic Plan
In February 2018, Pratt Institute initiated the creation of this new strategic plan. President Bronet charged the steering committee to create a plan based on an in-depth consideration of “our legacy, our changing context, our strengths, and our opportunities for further growth and success.”
To arrive at this plan, five committees addressed these areas of focus as the plan’s thematic pillars:
- academic excellence;
- student success;
- diversity, equity, and inclusion;
- global education; and
- civic engagement.
The pillar committees were composed to ensure balanced representation of students, faculty, and staff. As the committees met regularly throughout the past year, input from the entire Pratt community was sought through surveys and planning sessions, and a wide variety of needs and recommendations were proposed and reviewed within the pillar planning sessions. Periodic updates kept stakeholders informed, and themes from the emerging plan figured notably in President Bronet’s inaugural address.
Current and Subsequent Planning
Following the model of the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Strategic Plan, each of the pillar committees has set forth the following broadly stated, high-level plans for Pratt Institute for the coming years. Their statements, along with goals and summaries of supporting initiatives, lay the grounding vision and direction for the operational planning and implementation processes that will follow.
This strategic plan is, therefore, the foundation of an ongoing process, and the next step requires the input of members across all divisions of the Institute to develop the operational plans that articulate specific initiatives and responsibilities in finer detail for their areas.
The operational planning process will begin in fall 2019. The completed operational plans will be developed over the coming year and published along with this strategic plan on Pratt’s website. The operational plans will also include timelines for implementation, and the processes for ongoing review, reporting, and assessment.