From the President

Update on Space Utilization Planning

Posted July 26, 2017

Dear colleagues:   

In late spring I shared with each of our bargaining units and the Cabinet a plan to bring in a space consultant to study our current space utilization, assess the alignment of space with our future potential and to make recommendations about optimizing our limited space.  This project was assigned to the oversight of the CFO/VP for Administrative Services, Bruce Biser.  In May we contracted with BWBR, a firm which has worked with Metropolitan State University on its building and renovation projects over many years and knows our university, its mission, and our space well.

Beginning in June BWBR undertook the first phase of this project by interviewing me and members of the President’s cabinet, which includes vice presidents, the provost, the associate provost, academic deans, the dean of students and the Director of ICES.  These interviews focused on gathering visions for the future, ideas for improving student experiences and important staff and faculty working relationships.  Last week, the consultants met with me to provide a preliminary draft report on what they had learned and high-level ideas about how we might proceed.  This report was entirely for the purpose of determining whether their thinking was on the right track and consonant with leadership’s thoughts.

I am currently reviewing and studying this draft to determine if I am comfortable with moving on to the next step of the process.  I am also mapping out the campus consultation process that I expect to unfold over the next few months.  BWBR’s initial consultation and report to me are only the beginning of a multi-step, transparent process.  As soon as I have time to organize my thoughts on process and timeline, and get feedback from my executive team, I will share this information with the entire campus.

Earlier this week I learned that several rumors were circulating on campus that based on this preliminary Phase I report decisions had been made about the use of our campus facilities and that moves were imminent.  I assure you that no decisions have been made, no moves are imminent and there will be many opportunities for campus consultation, input, and discussion.  I expect the consultation process will take several months to complete, allowing us ample time to develop an action plan and an implementation timeline that minimizes functional disruption.  Your input and guidance are essential to this process in order to identify the best plan for space use at Metropolitan State.  As soon as the VP s and I have developed a plan for consultation and communication I will share it with you.  It will be robust!

I appreciate those who brought their concerns and shared the rumors that are circulating on campus to me and VP Biser so that I have this opportunity to dispel misperceptions and inaccuracies.

More information on the process will be forthcoming within the next few weeks.