Art and Design College

Art and Design College

Visioning Retreat

A Midwestern college of art and design hired a new president to reinvigorate its mission, which includes preparing students for successful futures in the fine and applied arts. The president’s arrival occurred while the school’s strategic planning process was already under way.


The president needed a process that built on the research conducted by its in-house strategic planning team and that streamlined and advanced existing efforts. She also required a process that incorporated her ideas and priorities without diminishing the value of the grass-roots work done to date. Together with long-serving faculty and staff, the president sought a shared understanding of the institution’s direction and desired impact on its student body and community.


Plan A Advisors designed and facilitated a comprehensive and intensive day-long retreat for administration, faculty and staff that resulted in a compelling vision, major goals and objectives, and a carefully delineated series of next steps for the college for completing an extensive three-year plan.

Product &

• Formed a retreat steering committee representative of the participant groups.
• Conducted a site and facilities tour and drew data from planning research and institutional materials (admissions, enrollment, budget, marketing) to highlight major issues and opportunities for strategic focus.
• Led a visioning exercise to build a shared sense of direction.
• Drafted and refined the overarching goals to serve as the plan’s framework.
• Led a creative and engaging process to identify the concrete and essential objectives to fulfill the vision and goals.