University of Nebraska Board of Regents


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Copyright 2020, Nebraska Board of Regents. Used by permission.


The University of Nebraska Five-Year Strategy: Trust, Predictability, and Positive Outcomes for Nebraskans

In February 2020, the newly named president of the University of Nebraska system, Ted Carter, gathered a diverse 28-member team of students, faculty, staff, and administrators to help chart the path forward for Nebraska’s public university. The team’s goal: At a time of great change in higher education, lay out a vision for what the future should look like for the University of Nebraska.

Broad themes quickly emerged, including student access and success, excellence in teaching and research, diversity and inclusion, partnerships, and fiscal effectiveness. Then COVID-19 hit, forcing a pause in the team’s work. The ensuing months showed that the initial priorities identified by the team were not only still relevant, but more important than ever in defining the future of higher education.

From that early work has emerged a five-year strategy for growth and success across the four-campus University of Nebraska system. In addition to the strategic planning team, Carter engaged alumni and donors, elected leaders, leaders in business and agriculture, the Board of Regents, NU senior leadership, and others in conversations about the University’s future.

The resulting strategy is built around several key principles:

The value of higher education is clear and growing. Nebraska’s success is tied to that of its University.

Students come first. The University of Nebraska should be the best place in the country to be a student, providing high-quality, affordable, accessible education that prioritizes students’ mental and physical health and prepares them for post-graduation success.

Our people are our greatest asset. We will invest accordingly.

We have a responsibility to make the best use of every dollar Nebraskans entrust to us.

Themes of equity and inclusion touch everything we do. We will be a University for everyone—successful only when all voices are heard.

Finally, Nebraskans should know what to expect from their University. We must work every day to maintain the trust and confidence of the people of our state.