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President's Vision Statement (FIRST DRAFT)

July 03, 2008

VISION STATEMENT
Cheyney University will be a dynamic learning community that prepares responsible, contributing, and engaged citizens that meet the intellectual capital needs of the Commonwealth, the region, and the nation. Graduates of Cheyney University will compete successfully with graduates of other institutions to respond aggressively and successfully to 21st century entrepreneurial opportunities, businesses and industry needs, and social issues.

Faculty will demonstrate excellence in their disciplines and in college teaching. They will engage in scholarship in their disciplines, in the improvement of college teaching, and in social problems that contribute to the well-being of the Commonwealth, region, and the nation.

PARADIGM
Cheyney University will fulfill its vision by the development of Centers of Excellence that respond to the needs of the region, encourage interdisciplinary collaborations, and clarify the strategic directions of the university. Cheyney University will also improve retention and graduation rates by the identification, review, and implementation of best practices in enrollment management (Noel Levitz), retention services (development of a retention center), graduation services, and career readiness.

BACKGROUND
A brief summary of the legacy of Cheyney University is included in Sustaining a National Treasure for the 21st Century. A more detailed history of the University can also be read in A Living Legend: The History of Cheyney University 1837-1951 by Dr. Charline Howard Conyers (1912-1989). Further, Dr. Sulayman Clark, a graduate of Cheyney University who went on to earn degrees at Stanford and Harvard also recently wrote The Rains, a historical novel that portrays the early founders of the first institution of higher learning for African Americans (Cheyney University) then called the Institute for Colored Youth. Cheyney University has prepared thousands of leaders for the Commonwealth, the region, and the nation for over 170 years.

Moreover, Cheyney University is the oldest Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE) institution and is the only historically black university in the system and one of over 100 HBCU’s. Not only does the University bring diversity to the State System, but it also brings a history of producing outstanding leaders. The founding story of the University exemplifies everything that is good about our state and the nation. Cheyney University has opened doors to opportunity, when other doors were closed. Even though each PASSHE institution strives to be unique and a good value, the power of the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education is a synthesis of the strengths and perceptions of all fourteen institutions.

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