Make WashU the ideal place for students, faculty, and staff to pursue their goals.

Personal and Professional Growth: Promote a growth mindset in our WashU community and provide structures for continuous development.

Leadership: Create a WashU model of leadership, empower each member of our community to build their leadership capabilities, and become an institution renowned for achievement in leadership development.

Access: Attract diverse, talented people and cultivate in our WashU community a sincere connection to our campus and our region.

Campus Well-being: Nurture a culture that promotes healthy excellence and invest in systems to promote well-being.

From campus visit through graduation and from hire to retire, we will support and develop our WashU community. While students, faculty, and staff represent unique populations, a shared set of priorities can lift each of these groups and our community as a whole. Common language and purpose around these initiatives, though differentiated in their delivery, positions WashU to reinforce our approach across our community and create a distinctive WashU identity in these areas. Equity is a guiding principle in this strategic plan: It is a principle both to be developed in its own right and developed across all components of the plan, especially in the following initiatives.

We endeavor to make WashU the ideal place for students, faculty, and staff to pursue their goals. To that end, we will build a community that advances: Personal and Professional Growth, Leadership, Access, Campus Well-being, and Equity.

We will attract diverse, talented people and cultivate in our WashU community a sincere connection to our campus and our region.

The WashU Pledge and the Gateway to Success Initiative represent significant commitments to student access. We will continue to build on this momentum by expanding opportunities for students to achieve their educational goals at WashU by reducing the financial burden of attendance and enhancing our student support systems. Student Affairs will advance student engagement as a strategic priority to ensure that our students feel a sense of belonging and purpose in our WashU community.

We will ensure that WashU is the best place for faculty to achieve their best work. To further attract and retain top talent, we will make transparency, equity, and inclusion central to faculty policies and practices. Through cross-university support systems, including interdisciplinary cohorts and robust mentoring practices, WashU will further a culture of collaboration and belonging for our faculty. We also will launch new initiatives to facilitate and reward faculty engagement in education and research with the St. Louis community.

To create an inclusive and thriving community of staff, we must revitalize the processes, policies, and procedures of our institutional human resources strategy. We will transform our recruitment and our onboarding process so that our new employees are poised for success. The creation of new systems, technology, and processes will not only increase our staff’s sense of belonging but also enhance our ability to carry out our core mission of research, education, and patient care.

We will promote a growth mindset in our WashU community and provide structures for continuous development.

We will achieve best-in-class career services for our students. A unified career center model for our undergraduate students will optimize the experience for students and employers. Through advising, coaching, and curricular integration we will set students on the path toward achieving their personal and professional goals. Through school-based expertise and, where advantageous, through the career center and new professional development pathways at the Liberman Center, we will also continue to create career opportunities for our graduate, medical, and professional students. 

WashU will enhance the faculty experience by providing support for professional development throughout the career life cycle. We will develop formal mentoring policies and practices so that both tenure-track faculty and teaching, research, and practice faculty have opportunities for formal and informal mentor training programs and coaching services. To further expertise in teaching, mentoring, and equity, we will create a continuing education program for faculty.

As the nature of our staff’s work and collaboration evolve, our professional development will need to allow for continuous development to adapt to new and different skills. We must invest in new approaches to ongoing professional education to ensure that our staff have the ability to efficiently and effectively advance our mission. The creation of a staff leadership institute, together with our training platforms, will generate innovation, productivity, and increased opportunity for our staff. 

We will nurture a culture that promotes healthy excellence. 

To advance student health and well-being, we will develop a coordinated, campus-wide initiative supporting students to pursue excellence that is motivated by internal standards and intrinsic rewards instead of social comparison and external pressure — and without compromising their physical or psychological well-being. We will create a new space for health and well-being dedicated to fostering a community that is thriving and productive, promoting behaviors that prepare students for sustainable lifelong success, and supporting the social and emotional health of community members.

Among our faculty and staff, we will promote health and well-being through a variety of initiatives. A more robust human resources strategy will contribute to promoting health and well-being across campus. We will continue to improve climate related to work-life integration. Enhanced family-friendly policies are integral to our community’s ability to do their best. Moreover, we are dedicated to cultivating an environment where one’s sense of self can be fully expressed and appreciated.

professor speaks with student

Together, we will create a WashU model of leadership and empower each member of our community to develop and utilize their leadership capabilities. We will become an institution renowned for achievement in leadership development. 

Leading is about the positive change any person can effect and the way in which they do so, not merely the position they hold. All individuals have the potential to influence and energize others, while they work together toward a common goal. We recognize that members of our community come from diverse backgrounds and work in different realms and as a consequence they will exercise leadership in a way that is true to their purpose, values, and strengths. For our students, WashU must prepare the next generation of leaders and citizens who will better our region, nation, and world. For faculty and staff, WashU will provide opportunities to grow their leadership qualities, equipping them to thrive and to make positive change at the university, in their community, and in their profession. 

Across these groups, we will take an integrated approach to build a model of leadership distinct to WashU. We will deliver this model of leadership in a manner best attuned to our students, faculty, and staff. Student Affairs will partner with the chancellor’s senior advisor on leadership to establish an ambitious program for our students that will set the standard in this field. Opportunities for leadership will be hallmarks of our faculty culture across all ranks and tracks, and we will increase leadership development programs and pipelines. WashU will launch a staff leadership institute to develop and empower staff to realize their full potential and impact at the university, and in their other facets of life.