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STLCC, State Board for Higher Education to Coordinate Strategic Plan

December 22, 2008

In today’s knowledge-based economy, higher education and training are keys to an improved standard of living for Missouri residents. A coordinated approach to building a higher education system that ensures the future prosperity of Missouri residents and the state is necessary to address the serious challenges created by a struggling economy.

Last spring, the St. Louis Community College Board of Trustees approved three strategic directions that include growing enrollment and improving access to college, improving the academic achievement and learning outcomes of all students, and improving the college’s responsiveness to evolving workforce needs. By accomplishing these directions, STLCC will more fully develop the educational, economic and social fabric of the St. Louis region.

"More than 100,000 students annually seek education and training through St. Louis Community College, and their success depends on our ability to provide quality instructional and student support programs," said Robert Nelson, STLCC board chair. "We also recognize the importance of increasing access to higher education not only on the local level, but also on the regional and state levels."

In July, the Missouri Coordinating Board for Higher Education adopted a plan to increase statewide access to higher education and develop a 21st century work force. Because both plans are on a parallel track, the STLCC board resolved at its Dec. 18 meeting to share with CBHE the strategic plan of increasing access to higher education and developing a 21st century work force.

"Our vision of the St. Louis Community College Community of tomorrow is grounded in capitalizing on our strengths and addressing our critical needs through the development of a collaborative and reflective strategic plan," said Zelema Harris, STLCC chancellor. "Our effectiveness as a college within the next five years will require the best of what we are and the best of what we can become."

Both the STLCC and CBHE planning processes are grounded in the assessment of key performance indicators associated with higher education access, student learning outcomes and workforce and economic development. Assessment of these indicators allows for measurement of progress and demonstration of effectiveness.