CWU News

From the President: Update on the Vision and Mission

President Jim Wohlpart

President Jim Wohlpart

Dear CWU community,

I write with an update from the Vision, Mission, and Strategic Plan Steering Committee. After gathering rich and robust feedback from faculty, staff, and students, the Steering Committee held a thoughtful and collaborative conversation that shared the feedback they had heard in order to arrive at the Vision and Mission statements below. The next step is for the Board of Trustees to take up these statements for their consideration and feedback next week. 

Along with the final versions of these statements, I am including notes about how we determined which phrases to use in response to the feedback we had received. Key words are highlighted in red. [Note: key words are bolded in this online document.] 

Vision: Central Washington University will be a model learning community of equity and belonging.

Mission: In order to build a community of equity and belonging, Central Washington University nurtures culturally sustaining practices that expand access and success to all students. We are committed to fostering high impact practices, sustainability, and authentic community partnerships that are grounded in meaningful relationships.

Some groups wanted to include the phrase “will build” in the Vision statement as a way of indicating, clearly, that we have lots of work to do to elevate equity and belonging. That phrase has now been added to the Mission statement in order to affirm the work in front of us. The Steering Committee decided not to include it in the Vision because we do not want to suggest that we would be building, and building, and building…and never getting there. The Vision is intended to BE a model. It is off on the horizon, but we must keep our sights on where we are heading.

In the Mission statement there was some desire to include “curriculum” and “pedagogy” after “culturally sustaining” in order to indicate that shifting our curriculum and pedagogy must be included in this work. The Faculty Senate leaned into this notion, that all faculty must be on board with revising their curriculum and pedagogy so CWU can sustain the various cultures that we welcome to campus. But others felt that it made the Mission less focused and included phrases that may not resonate with all members of our community. Given its importance, we will include this in the Strategic Plan, but we opted for the more streamlined and focused phrase in the Mission.

Finally, the university was split on the use of “learners” or “students.” Many advocated for learners to indicate that we are all involved in the learning that must be done. The Steering Committee retained “students” in the Mission because we need to have a laser focus on expanding access and opportunities for success for our students; there is a great deal of work to be done here, and we must dedicate ourselves to this work and to their success. Additionally, the idea that everyone at the university must be learning is included in the Vision under the phrase “learning community.” We can also include it in the Strategic Plan.

Next week, the Board of Trustees will take up the Vision and Mission statements and provide feedback and direction. After that, we will begin to consider next steps for developing a Strategic Plan.

Please join me in thanking the members of the Steering Committee. This has been a long journey and they have done a great job facilitating your voices.



A. James Wohlpart, CWU President
On behalf of the Steering Committee

Elvin Delgado, Former Faculty Senate Chair
Jonathon Henderson, Exempt Employee
Missy Davis, Classified Employee
Madeline Koval, ASCWU
Jessica Murillo-Rosales, Alumni representing Graduate Students
Jeff Stinson, Provost’s Council
Jennifer Dechaine, Academic Department Chair Council
John Vasquez, Student Success
Lauren Hibbs, University Centers
Laura Dahlby Nicolai, Athletics
Sigrid Davison, Equity
Wendy Iwaszuk, Foundation Board/Alumni/Community Member