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College launches presidential listening tour

| Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Saint Mary’s president Jan Cervelli launched her Presidential Listening Tour: “A Foundation for the Future” on Sept. 2 to gather feedback to inform the College’s next strategic plan, according to a College press release.

According to the release, Cervelli will hold a series of meetings and attend events throughout the academic year with students, faculty and staff, as well as other members of the Saint Mary’s community, such as alumnae, parents and trustees.

Surveys will also be conducted to gather data and personal input from members of the community in order to find areas for improvement in the College.

Former College president Carol Ann Mooney initiated the current strategic plan, called “Boldly Forward,” to cover the years 2012 to 2017. Over the summer of 2017, Cervelli will use the data collected during her listening tour to develop the next strategic plan.

Cervelli said in the release that she encourages everyone in the campus and in alumnae communities, as well as friends and supporters of the College, to make their voices heard in shaping the College’s future.

“Saint Mary’s proud tradition inspires and reminds us that, though our service to the College will be short in the full sweep of its history, the influence of decisions we make today will be felt much longer,” she said in the release. “What do we want our influence on Saint Mary’s to be?”

In a previous interview with The Observer, Cervelli said the listening tour is an opportunity to hear from everyone involved with Saint Mary’s.

“It’s my objective to meet as many people as possible in as many different venues, to listen to what people have to say about Saint Mary’s,” Cervelli said. “What they think of it today, what it means to them, how has it changed their lives, what works really well, what are some opportunities we’re missing and what are some things we could do better.

“I’ve learned a great deal by asking more questions than I have talking, so I want to continue that through the year and you will see that I want to share what I’m hearing — I don’t want to just internalize it. I think it’s also a good opportunity for all of us to do a listening tour — to listen to each other, to get to know each other. While it’s a small campus, we have a lot to learn from each other.”

According to Cervelli, upcoming events and other information about the listening tour can be found on the College’s website.

“Anyone can get on [the website] and learn what I’m learning, can participate, can add,” Cervelli said. “I think it’s a great convening of who are we, who do we want to — where did we come from, and where are we going?”

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