Strategic Plan 2023-28


Including statements of Vision, Mission and Values
plus Goals and Initiatives 

Approved by the SIS faculty at the MLIS Review meeting, May 3, 2023 



The 2023-28 Strategic Plan for Wayne State University's School of Information Sciences (SIS) was developed with input from key constituents including faculty, staff, students, alumni and friends. It includes statements of the school's vision, mission and values that harmonize with the current Wayne State University Strategic Plan. Operational components, including timelines and other details that will be used to monitor progress, are not included here. 


We will be an excellent institution of library and information sciences that prioritizes equity and inclusion. We will create leaders and empower diverse communities to harness information to inspire and activate positive change. 


We create and advance knowledge through our research and teaching in library and information science and cultivate a diverse and professionally equipped student body to positively affect our communities, including the disciplines and professions we represent. 


  1. Collaboration: Representing a wide array of information professions and multiple internal and external communities, we benefit from interactions with community, academic and professional stakeholders. 
  2. Integrity: We strive to operate ethically and to be accountable to ourselves and our stakeholders. 
  3. Innovation: We advance our disciplines and related professions through creative and continuous transformation in our research and teaching. 
  4. Excellence: We strive for the highest-quality outcomes in everything we do. 
  5. Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Accessibility: We value equity and understand that the tenets of DEIA are at the core of the disciplines and professions we represent. 
  6. Leadership: We value our leadership role in the disciplines and professions we represent as well as in the university’s research and instructional environments. 

Goals and Initiatives 

Goal 1: Innovative teaching and student success 

This student-centered goal prioritizes teaching excellence, curricular relevance and infrastructure improvements that directly affect students. 


  • Enhance student success and retention through participation in courses, internships, student research and other initiatives. 
  • Facilitate excellence in advising and mentorship through the involvement of faculty and academic services officers. 
  • Improve technology support for instruction and communications. 
  • Continue to support compassionate teaching for all students and elevate the experience of students from diverse backgrounds, including those with diverse abilities. 
  • Invest in faculty and staff training in the areas of teaching and engagement with the Office of Teaching and Learning and other instructional resources. 
  • Introduce and continuously revise programs and curricula to best serve students and the disciplines/professions represented by the school. 

Goal 2: Excellence in research 

This goal prioritizes faculty and student research that supports the mission of a research-intensive university. 


  • Identify resources to support faculty with funding for start-up, research, conferences and course releases. 
  • Create opportunities for students to participate in research (grants, research assistantships, coursework, mentoring). 
  • Offer research events (internally on campus and virtually) featuring faculty, students and alumni. 
  • Provide dedicated staff for grant support to identify opportunities and guide grants through creation and submission. 
  • Recruit and retain faculty with demonstrated active research agendas. 
  • Support community-engaged research among faculty and students. 
  • Strengthen research collaborations among SIS faculty and between SIS faculty and researchers at Wayne State University and other institutions. 
  • Strive to improve research infrastructure including equipment, data storage methods, and other IT support. 
  • Create a physical research facility to support multiple kinds of research and access to software.  

Goal 3: Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Accessibility 

This goal underscores the school’s commitment to the importance of equity in the recruitment and retention of faculty, staff and students and the importance of DEIA themes, including social justice and anti-racism, among many others in the professions represented by the school. 


  • Develop DEIA guidelines and resources for students, staff, and faculty. 
  • Integrate DEIA learning outcomes in all degree programs and courses. 
  • Actively recruit and retain students, staff, and faculty from historically marginalized groups and establish support structures to ensure their success. 
  • Develop DEIA training opportunities for faculty, staff, and students. 
  • Train faculty to infuse social justice and DEIA (UDI, Universal Design of Instruction) into course design and delivery methods. 
  • Offer programs on DEIA to school stakeholders and to the wider university and community. 
  • Partner with the Student Disability Services to promote universal design and the academic, cultural and social engagement of students with disabilities at Wayne State. 
  • Support the initiatives of the DEIA Coordinator and participation of faculty, staff, and students in and beyond SIS. 
  • Develop a SIS policy for gender equity in service, teaching, research and pay.
  • Identify funds to support research projects promoting DEIA initiatives. 
  • Involve the Office of Equal Opportunity in position searches for staff and faculty.
  • Foster, support, and disseminate faculty research and scholarship related to DEIA. 

Goal 4: Outreach and engagement 

The priorities of this goal emphasize interactions with the various communities that intersect with the information professions. 


  • Focus on outreach, including on- and off-campus events, faculty attendance at conferences, prospective student information meetings, prospective student demographic profiles, and engaging alumni to increase awareness of the school’s programs. 
  • Establish and continue formal internships with employers and internship hosts. 
  • Cultivate communication with professionals and community leaders, including Advisory Board members, that provide external perspectives. 

Goal 5: Organizational and financial stability 

This goal prioritizes organizational and financial strength. 


  • Recruit, retain, and review qualified leadership for the school. 
  • Maintain a compassionate and supportive environment for staff and faculty. 
  • Review the SIS Strategic Plan once per term and update when necessary. 
  • Continue supporting robust faculty governance and participation in the organizational and financial aspects of the school. 
  • Continue existing degree and certificate programs to ensure sufficient tuition revenue.
  • Support best practices related to student retention for reputational and financial success. 
  • Increase extramural funding and revenue through research support, grant writing support and entrepreneurship. 
  • Increase revenue through philanthropy. 
  • Exercise transparent and efficient financial operations. 
  • Monitor physical resources and infrastructure and advocate for improvements. 
  • Maintain multi-faceted recruitment plan. 
  • Establish and maintain robust marketing and communication programs, including social media, digital marketing, search engine optimization, paid advertising and development of physical marketing materials, such as brochures and posters. 
  • Review and improve the school’s website to reflect the current status of its programs, recruit students, and improve the reputation of the school. 
  • Deepen relationships with other Wayne State University departments to raise the profile of the school. 
  • Explore possibilities of programs that reach undergraduates. 
  • Explore possibilities for collaborative relationships with other graduate programs. 


The Vision and Mission statements resulted from strategic planning meeting sessions in January 2021 with continued discussions in Spring 2023 and are the result of focus group exercises to identify themes and potential wording. The texts were finalized in Spring 2023. The Values statement harmonizes with the parallel statement of the WSU Strategic Plan 2022-27, with some minor adaptations to connect them to SIS and the information professions. These three components were approved by SIS faculty on May 3, 2023. 

Shortly after the arrival of a new WSU Provost, Mark Kornbluh, near the beginning of the 2021-22 academic year, the university produced a five-year strategic plan. Academic and other units throughout the university were tasked the next year to establish strategic plans of their own by the end of the 2022-23 academic year. The Goals and Initiatives here reflect the major themes of the WSU Strategic Plan 2022-27 and the most recent SIS Goals and Objectives. An external facilitator was tasked with identifying planning priorities and was informed by a variety of resources. School faculty and staff met over a period of several weeks to consider results of interviews with faculty and staff, as well as a stakeholder survey exploring the views of the school’s Advisory Board, alumni, faculty, staff and students. The survey was circulated in February 2023 to a listserv of all stakeholder groups. Survey and interview results were collated and points where consensus was clear were shared at a focused full day retreat in March 2023 attended by faculty and staff. A draft plan was supplied by the facilitator and its priorities are reflected throughout the goals and initiatives. A final version of the front-facing goals and initiatives was approved by the faculty on May 3, 2023.  

The goals and initiatives will be assigned desired dates of completion and operationalized through periodic reviews (at least once per term) by appropriate faculty committees that will recognize completion of the initiatives, indicate that more work is needed, or that the initiative is ongoing. 


This Strategic Plan will be reviewed twice per academic year. To ensure that is accomplished, the initiatives will be operationalized, which means that they will be assigned the following:

  • Timelines for accomplishment
  • Committees to accomplish the initiatives
  • Specific persons (or work roles) to accomplish the initiatives
  • Sub-initiatives, if useful, to realize the spirit of the initiatives
  • A mechanism to reviewing, involving those involved in accomplishing the initiatives themselves and the Administrative Concerns Committee