Updated strategic plan emphasizes innovation

Future focused. Innovation driven. is ECU’s strategic plan for 2023–2028. A refresh of the university’s 2017–2022 strategic plan, it highlights the intersection of ECU’s mission, vision and values as it sets priorities for advancing the university during the next five years.

A medal that states EAST CAROLINA UNIVERSITYIt maintains the university’s mission of Servire: To Serve, builds on the mission priorities of student success, public service and regional transformation, and adds “vision priorities” of social and economic mobility, workforce success, and rural health and well-being.

“It’s so ingrained in who we are,” Sharon Paynter, co-chair of the strategic plan refresh committee and acting chief research and engagement officer, said of the mission priorities. “While we’ve made a lot of progress, there’s still work to be done.”

The refresh committee consists of faculty, staff and students. The other co-chair, Ravi Paul of the College of Business, said the Future Focused. Innovation Driven. vision statement can be looked at as where ECU is now and where committee members see it headed.

“All organizations need to have some kind of competitive advantage to succeed. Without one, you fail,” said Paul, associate professor and chair of management information systems. “I think it’s absolutely critical that we think innovatively about the things that we want to continue to be. How do we do that better? How do we serve our communities better?”

ECU stakeholders have had opportunities to voice their opinions and views of what ECU’s future should look like through online surveys and public forums. They built upon Chancellor Philip Rogers’ Pirate Perspectives listening sessions during his first months as university leader.

“It is empowering, but it also is what keeps a university strong when you actually do take the time to listen,” said Provost Robin Coger. “It doesn’t mean that everything and every thought can always be reflected, but it does help” when people see their views reflected in the document.

The next phase of the refresh will connect the different university units with the strategic plan to ensure the “One ECU” approach. That will happen over the summer.

More information on the refreshed strategic plan is available at strategicplan.ecu.edu.

Future focused. Innovation driven. Strategic Plan 2023 – 2028