Thunderbirds Thrive: Strategic Plan 2020-2025

Overview

updated 7/22/2019Mesa Community College followed a five-step process for strategic planning that prioritized deep understanding of the current reality and developing actionable plans for improvement. This process spanned 15 months and was completed with input from a wide variety of stakeholder groups. The process was led by the Strategic Planning Committee, the College Leadership Team, and consulting partners. The first product of this process was the creation and Spring 2020 adoption of MCC's new Mission, Vision, and Values statements.

The strategic planning process is designed to yield a plan that answers four critical questions:

  1. What are the outcomes we care most about?
  2. What are we committed to doing in order to achieve these outcomes?
  3. How will we know if we are doing our work well?
  4. How will we know if the work is having the impact we intended?

MCC Strategic Plan 2020-2025

MCC's full strategic plan is available as a PDF. Key highlights from the plan are listed below.

MCC Strategic Plan March 2021

Letter from College Leadership

Mesa Community College’s Mission, Vision, Values, and Strategic Plan are built on the vital foundation of social justice through bold commitment and informed pursuit of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. We acknowledge the privileged in our community, our nation, and our world have historically benefitted from systems and structures that have reproduced inequities. And we recognize MCC’s own role in perpetuating some of those inequities. As an educational institution, we aspire to achieve a new reality in which structures, systems, and policies provide opportunities that support all people.

We are grateful to the many faculty, staff, and students who have endeavored to address inequities at our college, too often without the recognition or results their efforts deserved.

As an institution of higher learning, MCC strives to educate students to be informed in their choices, respectful of other viewpoints, sound in their abilities to think critically, and instilled with a sense of belonging to live and lead in a global community. As we orient our work to ensure that all of our actions are geared toward the transformative potential of education in people’s lives, we aspire to leverage teaching and learning so all who come to MCC are nurtured to achieve their full potential.

We at MCC move forward intentionally and fearlessly creating a college where all feel welcomed and receive the support needed to thrive.

-MCC College Leadership Team

    MCC’s Strategic Directions

    The Thunderbirds Thrive: 2020-2025 Strategic Plan sets the college's course towards three Strategic Directions. Each Strategic Direction is an aspirational statement about an ideal future state of the college, and each direction has an associated Wildly Important Goal (WIG), Sub-Wildly Important Goals (Sub-WIGs), key improvement strategies, and key measures of success. The Strategic Directions are numbered to assist in referencing them, not to imply a hierarchy.

    • Strategic Direction 1: MCC is an Agent for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.
    • Strategic Direction 2: MCC improves student experiences and outcomes through Guided Pathways.
    • Strategic Direction 3: MCC is a great place to work.

    MCC Strategic Direction 1: MCC is an agent for diversity, equity, and inclusion.

    We commit to dismantling structural barriers to equity by investing in equity-focused policies, practices, and behaviors that work to support all students and employees. We will call attention to patterns of inequity in student and employee outcomes. We take personal and institutional responsibility for the success of all our students and employees. We continuously reassess and adjust our own behavior, processes, and practices to be more equitable, fair, and just.

    Wildly Important Goal (WIG) 1: By 2025, MCC will attain equitable 2-year outcomes for new-to-college students by increasing the two-year success rate for all racial groups by 16%.

    Sub-Wildly Important Goals (Sub-WIGs)

    1.1: Close Opportunity Gaps in Course Success - By Fall 2023, close opportunity gaps in course success across all racial groups while increasing MCC’s overall course success rate from 74% to 80% per semester.

    1.2: Recruit and Retain a Diverse Workforce - By 2025, increase the diversity of our workforce by 5%.

    1.3: Foster an Inclusive and Equitable Campus Climate - In order to best understand, assess, and improve our college climate, the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Council will recommend a college diversity, equity, and inclusion survey to be administered to employees and students by the end of AY2021-22.

    Key Improvement Strategies

    The work of this Strategic Direction is guided by MCC’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Council. This council supports the college mission of creating an inclusive and vibrant learning community where everyone is supported to achieve success by:

    • providing strategic oversight, guidance, and accountability along with processes and resources for DEI initiatives and goals;
    • centralizing DEI efforts and communication with our internal and external college communities;
    • supporting and sustaining a system of inclusion and equity for ALL students and employees; and
    • guiding ongoing student and professional development as related to DEI.

    The DEI Council was formed in Summer 2020 and has formed work teams to prioritize work and take action towards the three sub-wildly important goals listed above.

    Success Measures

    Each of our Wildly Important Goals and Sub-WIGs must be measured to ensure accountability and help us stay on track as we progress in our strategic directions. We will monitor the progress we make towards our goals.

    • This document summarizes the current status of this strategic direction's success measures.
    • This dashboard (Tableau login required) provides in-depth data regarding course completion rates
    • A dashboard for employee demographics is forthcoming.

    MCC Strategic Direction 2: MCC improves student experiences and outcomes through Guided Pathways.

    MCC’s mission of creating an inclusive and vibrant learning community where everyone is supported to achieve success requires us to cultivate an exceptional student experience that ensures all students are welcomed into the Thunderbird family and supported on their pathway to success. The college’s ongoing transformation into a Guided Pathways college is foundational to this Strategic Direction and provides the framework for improving both the student experience and student outcomes, with equity for all students.

    We will implement the Guided Pathways framework to ensure that students from all backgrounds and circumstances are seen, celebrated, and supported for academic and career success. We acknowledge the gaps in student equity that exist at MCC and we will work to help all students succeed with an equity-minded focus. We will actively assess and improve our campus environment and interactions with students to ensure that they are free of bias, inclusive and rooted in kindness. Our faculty are leaders in their fields, offering students world-class teaching and engaging in continuous improvement through critical inquiry and student outcomes assessment.


    Wildly Important Goal (WIG) 2: By 2025, MCC will increase overall successful 2-year outcomes of first-time-in-college students from 11% to 16%.

    Sub-Wildly Important Goals (Sub-WIGs)

    2.1: Increase first-year college-level English and math completion - By the end of 2023, with equity across racial groups, increase the percentage of new-to-college students who complete college-level English and math in their first year from 27% to 33%.

    2.2: Increase first-year student credit momentum - By the end of 2023, with equity across racial groups, increase the percentage of full-time, new-to-college students who earn 30+ credits in their first year from 12% to 18% and increase the percentage of part-time, new-to-college students who earn 15+ credits in their first year from 18% to 24%.

    2.3: Improve the student experience - By 2025, increase the percentage of students who report that their college experience was better than expected from 54% to 66%.

    Key Improvement Strategies

    Guided Pathways to Success (GPS) is an evidence-based, comprehensive redesign that helps students identify their educational and career goals, determine their needs, and then chart a clear, coherent pathway to timely goal completion. It provides a holistic learning experience that promotes self-fulfillment and includes carefully sequenced courses, predictable schedules, recognizable milestones, and ongoing integrated support services.

    The work of this Strategic Direction is guided by MCC’s GPS Council. In Summer 2020, the Guided Pathways Council led a group of over 60 MCC faculty and staff in several road mapping sessions to prioritize our Guided Pathways work. The current top three priorities of Guided Pathways are:

    1. Students receive the right support when needed for success.
    2. Students easily navigate the tools, processes, locations, and language at MCC.
    3. Students experience an equitable and inclusive environment.

    Success Measures

    Each of our Wildly Important Goals and Sub-WIGs must be measured to ensure accountability and help us stay on track as we progress in our strategic directions. We will monitor the progress we make towards our goals.

    MCC Strategic Direction 3: MCC is a great place to work.

    MCC strives to be known as a great place work with employees who are satisfied, engaged, and feel a sense of Thunderbird pride. The college culture will be intentionally cultivated, ensuring that employee voices are heard, differing perspectives are valued and that all interactions are rooted in respect and kindness. Living our values in this dimension calls us to commit to cultivating a talent pool that is reflective of our student population and the communities we serve, modeling inclusivity and equity in decision-making and communication. As a great place work, MCC will recruit, retain, and develop the most qualified individuals in their fields.

    MCC employees will have the tools, resources, and support they need to be successful. Ensuring operational effectiveness frees our employees to focus on the relationships and collaboration that are vital to student success. To do this, we must focus on building effective systems and procedures that are free of barriers, are transparent, and are equitable in their design and implementation.

    Wildly Important Goal (WIG) 2: By Fall 2025, increase the percentage of MCC employees who rate MCC as a great place to work from 74% to 85%.

    Sub-Wildly Important Goals (Sub-WIGs)

    Sub-WIGs 1.2 (recruit and retain a divrse workforce) and 1.3 (foster an inclusive and equitable campus climate) from Strategic Direction 1 also support this WIG. In addition, by the end of 2021, MCC will establish additional goals and key strategies for this Strategic Direction based on employee feedback.

    Alignment with Maricopa County Community College District Strategic Planning

    MCC is one of the 10 colleges in the Maricopa County Community College District (MCCCD). While each college has a unique and recognizable role within its own community, the 10 colleges also have a shared foundation in the vision and mission of the District.

    MCCCD Vision

    A Community of College - Colleges for the Community - working collectively and responsibly to meet the lifelong learning needs of our diverse students and communities.

    MCCCD Mission

    The Maricopa Community Colleges provide access to higher education for diverse students and communities.

    We focus on learning through:

    University Transfer Education, General Education, Developmental Education, Workforce Development, Student Development Services, Continuing Education, Community Education, Civic Responsibility, and Global Engagement.

    Alignment of MCC’s 2020-2025 Strategic Directions with MCCCD’s 2021-2023 Strategic Priorities

    MCCCD Strategic Priority MCC Alignment
    Ensure high levels of student success, equity, and an excellent experience.
    • Strategic Direction 1: MCC is an Agent for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
    • Strategic Direction 2: MCC improves student experiences and outcomes through Guided Pathways.
    Build a great place to work through improving organizational and operational effectiveness.
    • Strategic Direction 3: MCC is a great place to work.
    Cultivate a sustainable, competitive advantage by meeting the needs of business and industry. Although the current MCC Strategic Plan does not explicitly support this district priority, MCC continues to work through our career and technical education programs to meet the needs of businesses, local industry, and our students.