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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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The BattalionMay 4, 2024

Final Vision 2020 forum focuses on emphasizing A&M uniqueness

0401_20_20– Tim Lai_5.jpg

Texas A&M administrators held the last of four Vision 2020 strategic planning forums Wednesday afternoon, closing out the series of open forums as the university prepares to make its final push toward the initiative’s goals.

As administrators continue to work on the Document on Texas A&M University 2015-2020 Strategic Planning, one of the concerns remaining regarding the latest draft is ensuring it represents the unique qualities of Texas A&M.

Gene Hawkins, associate professor in the Department of Civil Engineering, said he liked the document but felt it wasn’t unique enough to A&M.

“If we took out Texas A&M from this document and put any other university’s name on here, could it be used?” Hawkins said. “I think the answer, in my opinion, having not had a chance to study it in depth, but this document could apply virtually to any public institution in this country and I think A&M is an exceptional place and I think it is a unique institution and I’d like to see some elements of this strategic plan that really emphasize the uniqueness and specialness of Texas A&M.”

Amy Glass, associate professor in the Department of Economics, said administrators could add a line to the document emphasizing the students at Texas A&M and how they share a commitment to promoting the public good. 

“As we mentioned with The Big Event, one of the things that makes Texas A&M special is that our students are always focusing on the social good, and we’re preparing them to be good citizens in a way that I think is different than most other universities so I think we could sneak something like that in,” Glass said.

Provost Karan Watson said administrators agree they should try to show A&M is unique and they have tried to incorporate those concisely into the document’s strategies.

Interim President Hussey said A&M strives to focus on one of these unique qualities — the student experience — and that the students are something that makes Texas A&M unique. 

“I mean, I was at a function last night and had a chance to visit with some individuals and it was inspiring because talking about individuals that are coming to A&M for short periods of time, and they’ve interacted with the students on this campus and they walk away saying, ‘This is something I’ve never experienced anywhere else in the country. I want to be part of this,’” Hussey said.

Watson said the document is in progress, and although this is the final open forum for the semester, it will continue to be edited and altered as administrators, including incoming President Michael Young, work with department heads over the summer.


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