School of Continuing and Professional Studies

The FIT Strategic Planning Process devoted the fall term to identifying the key challenges and opportunities the College will face over the next decade. More than 80 interviews were conducted; four special roundtables were convened; and, in January we met as a Steering Committee to push the process forward by establishing nine special planning committees. The results of these discussions and deliberations are summarized in the four documents accompanying this charge to the special planning committee we are asking the School of Continuing and Professional Studies to establish.

  • a memorandum identifying issues for first roundtables;
  • a report on interview results;
  • a report summarizing the central themes from the strategic planning roundtables convened December 6-7 and December 15-16, 2004; and
  • a report on enrollment trends.

Over the next two months we are asking the special planning committee for the School of Continuing and Professional Studies to address two strategic challenges.

Strategic Challenge 1

A key goal for FIT emerging from the strategic planning process is to be and be seen as a creative hub linked to an increasingly dispersed set of industries—a nexus for the distribution of new ideas, new techniques, and the imaginative use of new technologies. As a creative hub with global reach, FIT might conceive and organize some of its elements as a think tank—a generator of innovative, entrepreneurial ideas that serve and help advance the fashion and related industries. FIT as a creative hub would engage in dynamic partnerships—with industry, with other higher education institutions, with its own students as barometers of new directions in the fashion and related lifestyle industries. FIT creates opportunities for its students as well as its faculty to serve as intellectual capital to enhance the workings of its industry partners.

This Strategic Challenge asks the School of Continuing and Professional Studies to ask What new markets for continuing and professional education should FIT explore in light of its announced goal of being and being seen as a creative hub with global reach? In responding to this goal and these markets, how would the School of Continuing and Professional studies define itself? What contributions to FIT does the School see itself as making over the next 15 years?

Strategic Challenge 2

In the increasingly competitive market for top students, those institutions that rise to the top have both excellent academic programs and exhibit a tangible commitment to being student centered. Students know when they are being served, when they see themselves as truly belonging to a community that reflects their interests and concerns, and the when they are taken as serious partners in the learning process.

Now is the time for all of FIT's programs and services to ask What changes to the campus environment will enhance teaching and learning while also increasing student satisfaction with their educational experience at FIT? More specifically, this Strategic Challenge asks, How might the School of Continuing and Professional Studies best strengthen its commitment to being student-centered in terms of the support students receive from classroom and non-classroom faculty as well as from the administration and staff?

  • explore and then specify the planning goals it wants to achieve in responding to each challenge;
  • identify a limited set of specific initiatives and the principal resources that will be needed to achieve these goals;
  • suggest a limited set of metrics and benchmarks that the School could track to see if, over the next five years, sufficient progress is being achieved; and
  • identify those issues and concerns that will need to be addressed once this current round of strategic planning is complete.

School of Continuing and Professional Studies Committee Members

CHAIR: Loretta Volpe, assistant professor, Advertising and Marketing Communications
CO-CHAIR: Michele Nagel, acting assistant dean, Art and Design
Percess Atteloney, assistant professor-registrar, Registration Center
Mary Ann Ferro, assistant professor and assistant chairperson, Fashion Design--Apparel
Christine Helm, program manager, Center for E-Commerce
Eric Hertz, director, Center for Executive Studies
Roberta Paley, assistant professor, Social Sciences
Barbara Ritchin, acting dean, School of Continuing & Professional Studies
Jeffrey Slonim, general counsel and secretary of the college
Joan Volpe, managing coordinator, Center for Professional Studies