During the month of March strategic planning for the 2000-2002 biennium has been a main focus for management throughout the University and the Libraries. Assessment for 1998-2000 is in the final stages and baseline data is being established for each academic unit and the Libraries to measure progress in 2002, 2004 and 2008. Many of the indicators are academically oriented in terms of student profiles, student success and student outcomes. Some of the indicators are relevant to library activities, however the libraries are also establishing some special indicators to measure student and faculty library use and its impact on their academic achievements, a rather difficult endeavor. We just finalized the assessment surveys from Dey Systems, Inc. for donors, faculty, alumni and graduate/professional students.
Simultaneously with the assessment process the University is in the midst of reallocation/reinvestment, planning to address upgrading salaries in the next several years. Each unit is in the process of preparing plans for the Provost and President regarding strengths and weaknesses and where consolidations and changes can be made. On March 30 and 31 the Deans and Vice Presidents will have a planning retreat with the Provost and President to finalize these discussions. The recently formed Blue Ribbon Commission will then work with these recommendations to finalize the process so that the biennial budget planning can be completed.
As we move more deeply into the next century and deal with electronic information and the digital information environment libraries will continue to undergo changes. During the last decade we have greatly changed libraries and this will continue. Our next initiatives will have to concern themselves with more and better access to electronic information and users' ability and success with using electronic information. We are really just at the very early beginning of this and need research in this area. We also need to work more closely with users and researchers to find out their needs in terms of electronic information. Finally we must work with vendors to ensure that users' needs are satisfied.
--Hannelore Rader, University Librarian