Strategic Initiatives

Strategic Initiatives

For 2017-2021, we identified six words that express our vision for the Seminary. Profile. Reach. Diversity. Vitality. Excellence. Care. Our strategic initiatives were developed based on this vision. 

Vision 1: We commit ourselves to being a school that ... is more widely recognized as a leading institution in evangelicalism. (Profile) 

Initiatives: In order to accomplish our vision we will:
1.1. Proactively and regularly communicate to all of our publics what we mean when identifying ourselves as an evangelical seminary.

1.2. Raise awareness locally, regionally, and nationally of Denver Seminary as a leading evangelical institution.

1.3. Broaden and strengthen brand awareness.

1.4. Participate as evangelicals in ecumenical, interfaith, civic, and non-religious forums, task forces, and events locally, regionally, nationally, and internationally that broaden and enhance awareness of Denver Seminary.

1.5. Create and support opportunities for the entire Seminary community to engage in outreach and service locally.

1.6. Enlist, equip, and train employees, alumni, and students to be ambassadors for the Seminary in the communities, to their professional networks, in their churches, and within their personal spheres of influence.

1.7. Increase the number of opportunities for staff and faculty to represent the Seminary in churches, denominations, and para-church organizations locally, nationally, and internationally through speaking and publishing opportunities.

Vision 2: We commit ourselves to being a school that ... is impacting a broader spectrum of God’s people with theological training. (Reach) 

Initiatives: In order to accomplish our vision we will:
2.1. Design and deliver fully online MA and MDiv degree programs to expand accessibility to those who would not enroll or complete programs offered only in a traditional on-campus mode.

2.2. Create more scheduling options for on-campus classes that better satisfy the demands of working adults.

2.3. Develop new degree programs and innovative delivery methods that target previously unreached student markets.

2.4. Design, market, and deliver non-degree theological training to mass audiences.

2.5. Build innovative partnerships with churches, denominations, networks, and other ministry organizations to help them develop leadership in their own settings.

2.6. Develop new models of extension education that incorporate online programming and delivery.

2.7. Strengthen and expand para-curricular educational enterprises (VGI, GLC, conferences, etc) to provide learning experiences for the broader community.

2.8. Expand and enhance the visiting scholar program.

Vision 3: We commit ourselves to being a school that ... is committed to valuing and nurturing diversity in our community. (Diversity) 

Initiatives: In order to accomplish our vision we will:
3.1. Provide regular training for faculty, staff and students to create a nurturing and welcoming environment for students and employees from minority communities.

3.2. Intentionally seek qualified applicants from diverse backgrounds and underrepresented communities for open faculty and staff positions.

3.3. Develop culturally appropriate recruitment, marketing, and retention strategies for students from diverse backgrounds and underrepresented communities.

3.4. Provide opportunities and support for all students and staff from diverse backgrounds and underrepresented communities to start new initiatives and fully participate in the leadership of the community.

3.5. Celebrate diversity in the current Seminary population to increase awareness and appreciation of the value of diversity in community.

3.6. Assess and adapt facilities to welcome and support students and employees from diverse backgrounds and underrepresented communities.

Vision 4: We commit ourselves to being a school that ... is growing each year in all key institutional indicators. (Vitality) 

Initiatives: In order to accomplish our vision we will:
4.1. Achieve annual growth goals for new students, total headcount, and total billable hours in order to ensure financial viability and economies of scale that improve overall effectiveness.

4.2. Increase the number of courses and sections offered in a given semester to meet student demand. (See 6.10)

4.3. Identify and alleviate institutional policies and practices that inhibit enrollment and degree completion.

4.4. Proactively assess student persistence, retention, and completion to understand causes of attrition and create interventions to improve student success.

4.5. Strategically increase and deploy financial aid to increase billable hours and maximize effectiveness in recruiting and retention.

4.6. Assess the financial viability and mission contribution of each academic program and new initiative in supporting institutional growth and future sustainability.

4.7. Annually assess the financial viability and growth potential of each extension site.

4.8. Ensure growth in operating reserves by aligning costs with income from various operating revenue sources.

4.9. Manage costs to complete each fiscal year with revenues in excess of expenses.

4.10. Design and implement a focused campaign to increase funding for student scholarships, program expansion, and future financial viability.

4.11. Alleviate Seminary indebtedness.

4.12. Increase total philanthropic impact by focusing on donor-centered, major gift support for funding priorities, including endowments/term-endowments.

4.13. Reduce institutional dependence on unrestricted gifts.

4.14. Expand planned giving program through improved systematic communication with donors.

4.15. Assess the possibility and desirability of eliminating federal student aid.

Vision 5: We commit ourselves to being a school that ... is intentionally and regularly pursuing improvement and innovation in every area of operations. (Excellence) 

Initiatives: In order to accomplish our vision we will:
5.1. Provide ongoing training in educational technologies and online teaching for full-time faculty, associated faculty, and staff who interface with students via technology.

5.2. Provide course design and instructional support for the development and execution of online courses needed for program expansion and innovation.

5.3. Assess current technology use and needs in order to develop a strategic plan to meet future technology needs.

5.4. Assess the condition and use of campus facilities and develop a strategic plan to meet future physical plant needs.

5.5. Assess library utilization and develop a strategic plan to meet future library needs.

5.6. Create mechanisms for mentoring and professional development of faculty and staff in leadership positions to better equip them for current and future roles.

5.7. Design and implement assessment processes throughout the institution (institution, student and programmatic) to maximize efficiency and effectiveness and support fulfillment of accreditation standards.

5.8. Analyze, plan for, and create mechanisms to manage retirement and succession across the Seminary.

5.9. Cultivate a teaching and learning culture characterized by the educational and cultural values of the Seminary faculty.

5.10. Encourage and support more interdepartmental collaboration in strategic decision-making.

Vision 6: We commit ourselves to being a school that ... is attracting and retaining exceptional students and employees. (Care)

Initiatives: In order to accomplish our vision we will:
6.1. Assess student services and reallocate resources as necessary to meet the needs of a changing student body, enhance the overall student experience and increase student engagement.

6.2. Assess and review academic practices and policies to ensure student success in their respective programs.

6.3. Bi-annually review the suitability of employee compensation and benefits to meet the demands of a changing workforce. Include opportunities for growth in compensation and leadership responsibilities.

6.4. Create opportunities and strategies to improve employee satisfaction, contribution, retention, and morale.

6.5. Develop individually designed retention strategies for staff and faculty.

6.6. Create a positive workplace environment where employees feel informed, supported, valued, and challenged.

6.7. Engage employees fully in the mission of the Seminary by improving communications, advancing transparency, and encouraging contribution, innovation, and teamwork in the success of the Seminary.

6.8. Provide and support training and professional activities for employees to enhance their career development and individual well-being.

6.9. Assess the suitability and create flexibility for employees to use technology to work remotely.

6.10. Increase the number of qualified associated faculty to meet the demands of expanded course offerings.

6.11. Enhance the orientation process, compensation, and administrative support for associated faculty.

6.12. Assess faculty workloads with attention to the changing nature of faculty responsibilities.

6.13. Seek and assess opportunities to provide additional affordable housing for students and employees.