Iowa State University

Iowa State's Aspiration: Becoming The Best Land-Grant University

The aspiration to become the nation's premier land-grant institution was set forth in the strategic plans for Iowa State that guided the University's development from 1990 to 1995, and from 1995 to 2000. This aspiration will continue to guide our development during 2000-2005 (i.e., fiscal years 2000-2001 through 2005-2006). The people of Iowa expect Iowa State University to become the nation's premier land-grant university, and Iowa State is committed to fulfilling that expectation. Over the past 10 years, Iowa State has made considerable progress toward this aspiration, and the new plan enables us to build on this progress.

To fully realize our aspiration through this new plan, we will embrace the concept of:

A responsible Engaged Institution1 characterized by:

By embracing these special characteristics of an Engaged Institution, Iowa State will more effectively fulfill its mission and responsibilities.

With a tripartite mission - learning, discovery, and engagement - the premier land-grant university achieves quality and balance of efforts in overall performance in these three areas through efficient and accountable resource allocation. For Iowa State University to be the premier land-grant university in the nation, it must be superior in fulfilling its mission for the state of Iowa.

As an Engaged Institution, Iowa State's tripartite functions will become more responsively and productively involved with our constituent communities; and we will represent the ideals of sharing and partnership by recognizing and respecting what our partners bring to the table. We will work in collaboration with others and expand partnerships with other educational institutions, government, and the private sector, building upon each others' strengths and focusing on what each can do best.

Publicly stating our aspiration expresses our willingness, desire, and commitment to stretch ourselves in our effort to continuously improve what we do as individuals and as a University community. How we work toward our aspiration is as important as achieving it.

Aspiring to be the premier land-grant university in the nation also implies that we strive for excellence as measured by national standards. There is no single measure by which we can track our progress. Instead, there are multiple indicators representing all aspects of our mission that we will examine over time.

Our commitment to accountability and rigorous assessment of progress toward our aspiration to become the best, as Iowa's Engaged land-grant university, will be further recognized when the national educational community looks to Iowa State as the model of excellence to be emulated by other land-grant universities

1Returning to Our Roots
Kellogg Commission on the Future of State and Land-Grant Universities. February 1999.

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