Campus LifeNews

Chancellor Pagano’s latest town hall focused on future goals and initiatives for UWT campus

Chancellor Pagano had several highlights to share during his Feb. 28 town hall meeting. His talking points included the UW Taco­ma’s campus current enrollment statis­tics, progress with the five-year strategic plan ‘Charting Our Course’ and further explanation on the current draft of the UWT Aspirational Statement. During the town hall, Pagano also laid out his long list of goals for several different aspects of campus — like academic, culture and equity initiatives.

To start off his town hall, Pagano showcased a few different statistics he had shared with the Board of Regents, including that 93 percent of UWT students come from Washington state, and that 77 percent come from the South Puget Sound area. Another sta­tistic Pagano shared was that 56 per­cent of current students are first-gen­eration college students, with first-generation being defined as nei­ther parent having graduated with from college with a degree.

A portion of the town hall was dedi­cated to updates on the UWT strategic goal. The five-year plan, now into its third year, has a list of 63 initiatives covering six impact goals: community, culture, equity, growth, scholarship and students. Some of the groups and projects being worked on right now include the South Sound Alliance, the First Gen Initiative and a project to expand study abroad opportunities and engagement.

“If somebody doesn’t look at what’s next, we’ll get stagnant,” Pagano said as he explained the importance of the stra­tegic plan. “We’ll kinda taper off and get average [sic] … You don’t just want to be ‘okay,’ we want to stretch ourselves.”

Pagano also took the time to share his results from the UW ARC 360 assess­ment. The UW ARC 360 is a compre­hensive evaluation that can be volun­tarily requested by any UW employee. There are different competencies which are measured depending on your posi­tion, and all data is gathered from evalu­ations done by the people you choose. Based on responses from UWT person­nel such as deans and vice-chancellors, Pagano’s strengths include integrity, com­munication and governance and leader­ship, while the biggest opportunities for his growth are in increased collaboration, innovation and leading change.

To wrap up his presentation, Pagano discussed the plans and goals he has for the future of UWT. He stressed, how­ever, that these were his personal goals and that any and all plans must go through the correct channels of gover­nance and be decided upon together with the stakeholders. For enrollment, Pagano hopes to increase the number of inter­national and out-of-state students, as well as have total student enrollment increase to 7,000 by 2025.

“I was really hit over the side of the head when I first got here because the late Debra Friedman had that initiative ‘7-in-7,’ and it was 2013 when she start­ed that, and she wanted 7,000 students here by 2020, which would be next fall,” Pagano said. “People seemed to not like that, and really told me that we need to halt … Here I am now, on stage saying ‘I’d like to be 7,000,’ but at least its 2025 not 2020, and we are preparing our­selves, hopefully.”

Other initiatives Pagano has hopes for is seeing all academic programs ele­vated to “school” status, secure funding for two new engineering programs and continue building faculty support. For programmatic-related goals, he hopes the UWT will gain Carnegie Classifica­tion, as well as start on the next five-year plan. In terms of his equity goals, Pagano hopes to complete a campus climate sur­vey and expand the Center for Equity and Inclusion and its programs.

Budgeting goals included building up a reserve for UWT’s funds and ex­panding upon auxiliary enterprises to help build that reserve up. Finally, Pa­gano hopes to increase the amount of facilities to accommodate the growing campus size, as well as place more UW markings around the campus’ boundar­ies in a seamless manner. Plans for ex­panding parking spaces and accommo­dating the increase of student enrollment were also discussed.

“It should be, though, that as we in­crease the student population, we in­crease the income to the university, [and] we are deliberate about putting parking to match that,” Pagano explained. “Oth­er things we can do is our transportation plan [and] do things to encourage people to not bring a car to campus … that is a part of our parking plan too.”