Page 1

The VCU School of Business

STRATEGIC PLAN Launched 2015-16


In this era when startups are upending entire industries, when the power of data is just being unleashed, and crowdsourcing can fund an idea a world away,

CREATIVE SOLUTIONS.

BUSINESS DEPENDS ON

Creativity doesn’t just apply to trendy startups, digital agencies and b-corps. Traditional companies (think: accounting, manufacturing, insurance) come to us in search of individuals and insights to help them navigate a non-traditional world.

JO IN

US

IN

VI SI ON

OU R

Now is the time to capitalize on the opportunity before us. While other business schools may be addressing innovation in various ways, VCU IS UNIQUELY POSITIONED TO TAKE THE LEAD.

TO

They call on us because creativity is in Virginia Commonwealth University’s DNA. It ignites the collaborative energy between students, faculty and professionals that is shaping our city and the future of business education.

2

Virginia Commonwealth University


School of Business Strategic Plan 2015

3


T HE NEED F OR CRE AT I V I T Y Creative thinking and innovation have never been more important. Economies need growth. Businesses need ideas. People need inspiration.

We will not move forward and thrive by clinging to traditional ways of approaching challenges. Leaders in every industry recognize this and are seeking graduates who will bring skills and creativity to their organizations. More than 1,500 CEOs, in a study by IBM, cited creativity as the most

“The effects of rising complexity call for CEOs and their teams to lead with bold CREATIVITY, connect with customers in imaginative ways and design their operations for speed and flexibility to position their organizations for twenty-first century success.” – Global CEO Study by IBM, 2010

important leadership quality for success in business. A follow-up study found that CEOs are seeking to unlock employee creativity and innovation by “creating more open and collaborative cultures—encouraging employees to connect, learn from each other and thrive in a world of rapid change.”

“Schools should arm graduates with more creative ways to tackle tough challenges. Organizations are looking for graduates with superior creative abilities. When students are given the chance to APPLY BUSINESS PRINCIPLES IN CREATIVE WAYS, they can build a number of other important skills simultaneously.” – The Future of Business Education & the Needs of Employers study by Hult International Business School/Hult Labs, 2014

“Unlocking CREATIVE POTENTIAL is seen as key to economic and societal growth.” – State of Create Study by Adobe, 2012

“95% of employers give hiring preference to college graduates with skills that will enable them to contribute to INNOVATION in the workplace.” – It Takes More than a Major: Employer Priorities for CollegeLearning and Success study by the Association of American Colleges & Universities and Hart Research Associates, 2013

4

Virginia Commonwealth University

“The very skills needed for workforce success are the same skills exiting students most lack, including analysis and PROBLEM SOLVING; collaboration and team work; business-context communication; and flexibility, agility and ADAPTABILITY.” – Pursuit of Relevance: How Higher Education Remains Viable in Today’s Dynamic World Study by IBM Institute for Business Value, 2015


VCU’S OPPORTUNIT Y TO TAKE THE LE AD A recent survey, which gathered responses from 960 students and alumni showed that the VCU School of Business is building on an already solid reputation of creativity​and innovation. • Both students and ​alumni ​​differentiate​d the​ ​VCU School of Business as ​developing c​ reativity ​more than other business schools • Three-quarters of student and alumni respondents believe that leveraging VCU’s creative culture makes sense for the School of Business

Both students and alumni declared that, in general, their expectation of business schools is that they will develop specific business skills (finance, accounting, etc.), analytical and critical-thinking and collaboration and teamwork. While VCU already gets high marks in these areas, the EPIC pillars will allow for further development and opportunity. A benchmarking peer review conducted in spring 2015 by a third-party research firm concluded that while other business schools may be addressing innovation in various ways, none are approaching the challenge schoolwide through the lens of creativity.

School of Business Strategic Plan 2015

5


OUR CREATIVE LANDSCAPE VCU: a creative university • Leading urban, public research university • No. 1 public School of the Arts graduate program • 1st Master in Product Innovation in the nation, taught through the VCU da Vinci Center • Venture Creation University and VCU Innovation Gateway, universitywide strategies for entrepreneurship

Richmond: a creative community • Ranked 3rd on the “10 Best Places to Start a Business” by Inc. magazine, August 2015 • Ranked 4th among the “Top 10 Mid-Sized American Cities of the Future” in Foreign Direct Investment Magazine’s North American Cities of the Future 2015/16, April 2015 • Ranked 3rd among “The Most Creative Mid-Sized Cities in America” by Movoto, November 2013 • Named one of “10 Up And Coming Cities for Entrepreneurs” by Forbes.com, September 2013

VCU School of Business: a creative b-school • Strong relationships with the regional business community, across campus and with university partners around the globe • Breadth of high-quality programs, faculty expertise and collaborative spirit • The nation’s No. 1 graduate advertising program, the Brandcenter, joined the business school two years ago • Students and alumni recognize the strength of our creative culture and community

6

Virginia Commonwealth University


“We know that creativity is both the fuel for individual achievement and the key ingredient for a successful city. Today’s creative city attracts innovative people and businesses with new experiences and ideas in every aspect of personal and professional life.” – RVA CREATES, THE AWARD-WINNING COLLABORATION TO CREATE A STRONGER IDENTITY FOR RICHMOND, VIRGINIA

School of Business Strategic Plan 2015

7


E P

I

C

EPIC PL A N OV ERV IE W This plan was developed through a collaborative process involving faculty, staff, students, alumni, donors and business community partners.

V ISION

Drive the future of business through the power of creativity.

MIS SION

To be a dynamic hub of business research and education, fueled by creativity and a commitment to preparing students to lead in a complex world.

S T R AT EGIC PIL L A RS

E PI C Experiential Learning

8

Virginia Commonwealth University

Problem-solving Curricula

Impactful Research

Creative Culture


E P

E X PEC T ED OU T COME S We will track our progress on these long-term metrics.

CREATIVE GRADUATES invigorating companies, solving problems and starting new ventures • Creative confidence and critical-thinking skills • Graduation rate • Job placement rate • Student and alumni entrepreneurship

I

C

Because at VCU, what you study, teach, research, and create doesn’t mark the boundaries of what you can contribute but rather the beginning of it.” – Michael Rao, Ph.D., president, VCU and VCU Health System

POWERFUL CONNECTIONS between students, faculty, staff, alumni and the business community • Internships • Business community engagement • Alumni participation rate

RESEARCH DISCOVERIES making an impact locally and around the world • Number of quality publications • Cross-disciplinary collaborations

School of Business Strategic Plan 2015

9


E P

I

C

E X PERIEN T I A L L E A RNING Because creativity is born from experience.

Context

Objectives

At VCU, you won’t find us working in isolation, disconnected from the world around us. We’re engaged in our thriving urban culture, on the ground, using our expertise, talents and discoveries to actually make a difference wherever we feel the most needed. WE MAKE IT REAL.

Enhance experiential learning opportunities such as:

VCU is one of only 54 universities to be designated by the Carnegie Foundation as “Community Engaged” with “Very High Research Activity.” With longstanding ties to the regional business community and established global partnerships, the School of Business is primed to expand and deepen our community impact while giving students critical opportunities to gain hands-on experience before graduation.

• Real-world projects for students in all programs • Expand International Consulting Program and other study-abroad opportunities • Business Career Services internships and professional development • Executive residencies on campus and faculty residencies at companies

Initial steps for 2015-16

The School of Business is not just helping us get an education but also helping us prepare for a career, and this is a huge advantage.” – Business student

• International Consulting Program expanded from four to five sites • Facilitate more student externship opportunities • Dedicate space for experiential education in Snead Hall, to be ready for use in fall 2016 • Expand number of faculty residencies at companies this summer

10

Virginia Commonwealth University


E P

I

C

PROBL EM -SOLV ING CURRICUL A Because complex times require fresh thinking and creative solutions.

Context

Today’s business landscape is complex and constantly changing. Companies large and small must grapple with the influences of globalization, technology, vast quantities of data, social media, demographic and regulatory changes. It’s no wonder then, that when the Association of American Colleges & Universities surveyed employers, 93 percent reported “a demonstrated capacity to THINK CRITICALLY, COMMUNICATE CLEARLY, AND SOLVE COMPLEX PROBLEMS is more important than [a candidate’s] undergraduate major.”

will ensure that our students graduate with the skills and confidence to tackle complexity and deliver creative solutions far into the future. Objectives

Prepare students with curriculum changes such as: • New, creative and innovative coursework for graduate and undergraduate students • Faculty employing new teaching methods • Online learning and emerging technologies

The VCU School of Business is tackling the challenge head-on by implementing schoolwide a new methodology for creative problem-solving, called CREATE. This and other curriculum changes

Initial steps for 2015-16

• Develop the CREATE methodology and pilot in select courses

I feel inspired and ready to gain more experiences that will help me make a difference and be successful in the world of business.” – Business student

• Assemble a faculty learning community to champion the CREATE process • Train faculty and staff to use the “Winning Presentations” technique • Introduce BUSN 202: Creativity and Ideation in spring 2016 • Offer Dean’s Teaching Seminars focused on the CREATE process

School of Business Strategic Plan 2015

11


E P

I

C

IMPAC T F UL RE SE A RCH Because thoughtful, innovative research has the power to change the world.

Context

Objectives

THOUGHTFUL, INNOVATIVE RESEARCH by VCU School of Business faculty has the potential to make a major impact on our world by advancing business and management theory, influencing industry practices and regulations, and inspiring and informing the education of our students.

Facilitate and support a creative research environment with:

Our focus on impactful research supports one of the key themes of VCU’s Strategic Plan, Quest for Distinction, to “Attain distinction as a fully integrated urban, public research university through contributions in human health, research, scholarship and creative expression that advance knowledge and enhance the quality of life.”

• New endowed chairs and professorships • Distinguished researchers visiting and collaborating with our faculty • Centers that stimulate research across disciplines • Diverse faculty collaborations

Initial steps for 2015-16

• Visiting recognized scholar in creativity and/or the creative process to present in a Dean’s Research Seminar • Re-launch the Dean’s Scholar Program to recognize and fund top scholars • Institute a Research Fellows Program, beginning summer 2016 • Showcase faculty research in the Snead Hall Atrium

The trademark of the VCU experience — why we are distinctive — is that what we do here has a real impact on our world.” – VCU President Michael Rao, Ph.D.

12

Virginia Commonwealth University


E P

I

C

CRE AT I V E CULT URE Because businesses and professionals continually need to reinvent.

Context

What makes the VCU School of Business a creative place? OUR PEOPLE AND OUR CULTURE. Our faculty, staff and students nurture curiosity, celebrate diversity, share ideas openly, learn from each other, practice teamwork, engage with the vibrant campus community and city, and are willing to step out of their comfort zones and take risks on new ventures.

graduate with not just the skills – but the mindset and motivation – to bring the best of our creative culture to world. Objectives

Build on our unique creative culture through:

In order for our strategic plan to be a success, we need to strengthen our creative culture in ways small and large, formal and informal, to support and encourage our faculty to do their best teaching and research, and to ensure that our students

• Scholarships to attract students who will flourish and contribute to the diversity and vitality of the school and our region • Redesign of certain spaces in Snead Hall to inspire collaboration • Engaging VCU’s expertise in areas such as arts, engineering and medicine • Greater connection to Richmond’s thriving business, creative and startup communities

Initial steps for 2015-16

• Premiere the EPIC Challenge • Present series of 10/10 Talks with creativity experts in the atrium

VCU creates graduates who all bring something unique to the table.” – Business student

• Host the 2016 VCU Innovation Summit with the theme Business and Creativity • Offer mini-courses in ideation and design thinking for faculty and staff • Promote Third Thursdays Food Truck Court • Introduction of the Ice Cream Bike in fall 2015 • Grow participation in Ram to Ram, an alumni/student mentoring program

School of Business Strategic Plan 2015

13


E P

I

C

CRE AT E PROCE SS Addressing complex problems is one of today’s biggest challenges. Our new CREATE process is a framework for our curricula, based on proven techniques from the scholarship of innovation and entrepreneurship. CREATE provides a problem-solving structure that students can take from the classroom into the business world.

Questions to ask

Areas of study

What is the problem? Why is this a problem? What is causing the problem? How big is the problem? Who are the stakeholders? What are the different perspectives of stakeholders?

Situation analysis; swot analysis; data collection; ethics

Refine

What constraints surround the problem? Should the problem statement be refined? Should more information be collected? Can the problem be framed more creatively or differently?

Problem definition

Explore

What are possible solutions to the problem? Have enough possible solutions been generated? Can solutions be prototyped? Is there a different way of looking at the problem that can lead to an unconventional/nontraditional solution?

Idea generation; solution formulation

Analyze

What data analyses should be done? Which solutions are viable? How do the solutions relate to core values and ethical behavior? What are the risks and uncertainties? Which solutions are preferred; which is the best and why? Have enough solutions been explored? Is the solution incremental in nature or can/should it be more radical?

Data analysis; cost-benefit analysis; sensitivity analysis

Translate

To whom should solutions be communicated? What and how should it be communicated? What are the best means for communicating? What is the message? How should feedback from stakeholders be incorporated?

Solution decision-making; oral, written communication

What steps need to be taken for proper implementation? Who is responsible? Where will the needed resources be found? How is success going to be measured?

Implementation; performance measurement

Focus

A T E 14

Virginia Commonwealth University

PROBLEM SOLUTION

E

Clarify

PLAN

C R

Execute


E P

I

C

Creativity is not an asset on the balance sheet, but it’s clearly valuable for companies and for us.” – Ed Grier, dean, VCU School of Business

As a former Disney executive, Dean Ed Grier knows the power of creativity and can’t wait to see where the imagination and talent of our faculty, staff and students take us next.

School of Business Strategic Plan 2015

15


E P

I

C

T HE EPIC CH A L L ENGE Moving us forward

From the beginning, we knew we wanted this plan to be a LIVING, BREATHING DOCUMENT, one that would allow for evolution and the incorporation of great ideas that hadn’t been thought yet. The EPIC Challenge emerged as the pathway for individuals to collaborate and develop ideas that fit the EPIC spirit. Open to all faculty, staff, students and alumni, the EPIC Challenge encourages collaboration by requiring applicants to partner with one (or more) individual(s) from outside their own discipline and possibly even outside of the university. The VCU School of Business Foundation is funding an EPIC Challenge at up to $750,000 over the next three years and possibly beyond. EPIC Challenge 2015-16

A total of 35 teams comprising 154 individuals submitted proposals in fall 2015. Of these, five finalists have been selected and will test, adjust and further develop their ideas. In March 2016, finalist teams will make a pitch for funding to a panel of judges including VCU School of Business Foundation trustees and Brandcenter board members. The judges will determine the award to each finalist team to implement their ideas, with the possibility of one to five teams receiving funding.

IN

16

Virginia Commonwealth University

,0 0 5 7 $

NG I ND FU

EX N HE T ER V O

0 0

EY E HR T T

RS A E


E P

I

C

2015-16 Finalists COMMUNICATION BY DESIGN FOR EPIC EMOTION Work with corporate partners to use design thinking to transform the way we teach business students to communicate. Using affective computing technologies (software that reads and quantifies facial and vocal emotion), the emotions conveyed when presenting can be evaluated. EPIC LEARNING Redesign the delivery of select core courses, upending the traditional lecture style course structure. EPIC learning will engage students in active interaction with faculty, leverage digital delivery methods and infuse the curriculum with creative problem-solving and experiential learning opportunities. “EXPERIMENTIAL� LEARNING Curate or build a set of experiments suitable for instruction in accounting, economics, finance, management and marketing. The goals are to create vibrant learning opportunities and to become a nationally recognized leader in using experiments for instruction. RAMP IT UP Address the needs of transfer students, through a four-week RAMP IT UP program envisioned for summer 2016. Students will take an academic class, learn how to apply the CREATE framework, participate in study skills and time management workshops, visit local corporations and experience much that Richmond has to offer. The plan is to continue the bridge into the academic year. THE MONEY SPOT Provide peer-to-peer financial education and counseling to all VCU students. Social media will be a focus to dispense knowledge and enable fellow students to share ideas and activities.

School of Business Strategic Plan 2015

17


Virginia Commonwealth University School of Business 301 West Main Street P.O. Box 844000 Richmond, Virginia 23284-4000 an equal opportunity/affirmative action university 000223-18

VCU School of Business EPIC Strategic Plan  

Because business depends on creative solutions.

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you