UC Santa Cruz releases new strategic plan, forms implementation executive committee

With goals and metrics to measure success in five thematic areas, the plan will guide the campus’s work for the coming decade

Cover of Leading the Change strategic plan
Leading the Change: The UC Santa Cruz Strategic Plan can be read at strategicplan.ucsc.edu and downloaded as a PDF.

Marking the culmination of a year-long campuswide conversation to craft a shared vision for the future, UC Santa Cruz today is launching Leading the Change: The UC Santa Cruz Strategic Plan and has formed an executive committee to guide and support its implementation.

“UC Santa Cruz has built a reputation for groundbreaking discoveries, creative scholarship, and creating an inclusive learning environment that empowers students to become leaders,” Chancellor Cynthia Larive said. “Our new strategic plan will enable us to build on our existing strengths and pursue new and emergent research, education, and service paths that will allow us to advance our global and regional impact.”

Leading the Change will guide the campus’s work for the coming decade and is built around five thematic areas with corresponding goals and metrics to measure the campus’s progress.

The strategic plan was developed under the guidance of a steering committee co-chaired by Chancellor Larive and Campus Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor Lori Kletzer with subcommittees with faculty, staff, and students exploring five thematic areas:

Leading the Change aligns with campuswide goals to enhance the undergraduate and graduate student experience, increase our research impact, and foster a more inclusive community. Through this plan, UC Santa Cruz will also advance its overall sustainability and resilience in the face of climate change as it strives to lead at the intersection of innovation and social justice.

“I am inspired by the collective aspirations of our campus community,” Campus Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor Lori Kletzer. “As a student-centered public research university, we are an engine of innovation, education, and equity, and our impact will only increase in the decade ahead.” 

Over the coming years, UC Santa Cruz will:

  • provide more experiential learning opportunities for undergraduate students while expanding offerings for elective courses in the colleges and divisions;
  • pursue new programs that support graduate student success, their professional development, and career goals;
  • grow its impact by strengthening our research infrastructure and enabling more interdisciplinary collaborations;
  • advance an inclusive and supportive environment by creating a campus culture rooted in diversity, equity, and inclusion; improve hiring practices; foster a sense of belonging; and
  • work intentionally to address the impacts of climate change and plot a course to decarbonize the campus while continuing to carefully steward land and water resources.

The campus began work on a new strategic plan in fall 2022, building on previous strategic planning efforts, including the 2021 Long Range Development Plan.

Knowing that some of the best ideas and insights come from the broader campus community, the planning effort included extensive feedback, including through town-hall meetings, open forums, focus groups, stakeholder interviews, and a campuswide survey. Draft reports were shared with the campus community in May 2023 with the summer spent incorporating feedback and finalizing the plan.

UC Santa Cruz formed an implementation executive committee that will recommend priorities, develop implementation timelines and budgets, charge task forces and working groups, monitor progress toward goals, and share progress on goals with the campus community through an annual report.

“This plan will be our guiding light for years to come,” Larive and Kletzer said. “Everyone will play a role in achieving our goals, and we are so excited for what lies ahead.”

Leading the Change: The UC Santa Cruz Strategic Plan can be read at strategicplan.ucsc.edu and downloaded as a PDF.