POWERING MARYLAND FORWARD
USM's 2020 Plan for More Degrees,
The University System of Maryland (USM) Board of Regents approved
in December 2010 the USM Strategic Plan 2010-2020, a document that will guide
USM's mission to power Maryland as an economic and educational leader.
A Stronger Innovation Economy, A Higher Quality of Life
The plan calls for attaining specific goals by 2020, such as
producing an additional 10,000 bachelor's degrees per year, increasing by 40
percent the number of science, engineering and math graduates from USM
institutions, doubling USM's externally sponsored research-and-development
funding from approximately $1.2 billion in fiscal year 2010, and enhancing
cost-savings practices that already have earned the system national recognition
for its efficient stewardship of public resources.
The executive summary of the USM Strategic Plan 2010-2020 can be read at:
http://www.usmd.edu/10yrplan/USM2020Summary.pdf PDF download.
In 2010, the USM faces a challenging operating environment
and a new decade in which change will be a constant. The 2020 Strategic Plan
was developed during the past year in the midst of several economic,
demographic, and technological challenges.
The worst recession since the Great Depression has impaired
the resources of Maryland and the nation. The "baby boom echo" -- children born
during a post-baby boom increase in birth rates between 1982 and 1995) -- drives
demand for greater access to education. Finally, technology is constantly
reshaping how students learn.
As USM Chancellor William "Brit" Kirwan has noted in numerous
presentations, the United States has lost its status as a world leader in
educating its citizens. In comparison to the rest of the industrialized world, the
U.S. ranks 23rd in high school completion rates, 10th in
post-secondary degree completion rates, and has the highest college dropout
rate of any industrialized nation. A few decades ago, the U.S. had the highest
high school and college completion rates.
"We must greatly increase educational attainment and make
the needed investments in research and scholarship if the United States is to
remain a world leader in creativity, innovation, and the knowledge economy,"
Kirwan said. "The USM 2020 Strategic Plan positions the state to be a leader in
educational attainment and to have a globally competitive innovation-driven
The plan has been developed with substantial involvement of
Board of Regents members, USM presidents, system-wide councils of faculty,
students and staff, USM Foundation board members and business and community
leaders. Five primary themes anchor the 2020 Strategic Plan:
Maryland achieve its goal of 55-percent college degree completion (either a
two-year associate's or four-year bachelor's, attained by 55 percent of the
state population 25 years and older);
Maryland's competitiveness in the innovation economy by building on existing
levels of extramural research funding and more successfully translating that
research in economic activity. The plan calls for the creation of 325 new
companies, five internationally recognized research centers of excellence by
2020, and a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship throughout the USM;
the academic model with course redesign strategies that help more students
understand material, complete their degrees, and become better-qualified to
join the workforce;
new ways to build on more than $200 million in direct cost savings already
achieved through USM's existing efficiency efforts, and approximately $1.5
billion in cash and pledges raised through the system's federated capital
campaign, further leveraging the resources available to the USM that benefit
and sustaining national eminence through the quality of USM's programs, people,
The 31-page plan can be read in its entirety at the
"The board and I are thoroughly impressed with the vision
demonstrated in the USM 2020 Strategic Plan and the work on this ambitious
project by the system's administrative staff," said Board of Regents Chair
Clifford M. Kendall.
"In this difficult economy, our system and the people we
serve have benefited from our positive working relationships with the governor
and the Maryland legislature," Kendall said. "We look forward to working with the
state's leadership for continued support as the USM positions itself during the
next decade to keep advancing our state's leadership in education and the
Leaders from the USM and its member institutions will share the
guiding themes of the 2020 Strategic Plan with critical constituencies in
Maryland, including legislators, civic groups, and the business community. Each
USM institution is developing a "business plan" to align with the strategic
plan's major themes. These individualized roadmaps throughout USM will spell
out not just the action steps necessary to achieve the plan's goals but the
required resources, as well.
the process involved in drafting the USM Strategic Plan 2010-2020 can be
accessed at http://www.usmd.edu/10yrplan/process/. This Web domain explains the
collaborative approach taken in drafting the plan. The domain contains an
archive of several white papers previously commissioned by the USM as important
resources in the plan's development.