Posted on July 21, 2021
Dear Staff and Students,
The University’s current five-year implementation plan (2017–2021) has reached its final year. Accordingly, a new plan is required to guide the implementation of the University’s Strategic Plan, UP 2025, for the next five years, 2021 – 2026.
The preparation of a new five-year implementation plan is in line with the University’s ‘nested’ planning model. In this model, the Strategic Plan (UP 2025), which provides the roadmap and navigational markers for guiding the University to achieving the vision and strategic goals it has set for itself by 2025, is supported by a five-year implementation plan that identifies broad implementation strategies, and one-year implementation plans. The ‘nested’ planning model allows for flexibility and the revision of priorities and strategies in the light of the complex and evolving environment in which the University operates.
The University has made significant strides towards achieving its vision in the past five years. We have achieved excellence in many research areas, the proportion of our academics with doctorates (68.8%) has grown and is the highest in the country, student success rates and graduate output have increased, we have built strong partnerships across the world, our visibility as a research-intensive university is rising, and our diversity profile has improved. The new five-year plan is an opportunity to re-imagine and reposition the University of Pretoria. The complex challenges caused by multiple ongoing disruptions, which have been aggravated by COVID-19, call for innovative responses and proactive alignment with evolving societal realities. Building on our successes, the new plan will identify strategic priorities for the next five years and the strategies and actions required to accomplish them. The new plan will also address areas of underperformance and reposition the University in alignment with its long-term vision and the changing context in which we operate.
A steering committee led by myself has been established to guide the development of the new plan.
The preparation of the new five-year plan will be as inclusive as possible. The Steering Committee will solicit input from all stakeholders. In addition, a webpage will be created for staff members and students to submit their ideas and feedback.
I would like to call on all staff members and students to participate in this crucial exercise so that, collectively, we can prepare a new five-year plan that will strengthen and further embed the University’s distinct identity and purpose. The challenges confronting society and higher education institutions demand a re-imagination of the University, and the pursuit of bold responses to enhance our sustainability, relevance and transformation of society. We have to be innovative and proactive, embrace new possibilities, and maximise our value proposition. In that way we can contribute as a reliable driver and agent of local and global change, for a more sustainable world.
Professor Tawana Kupe, Vice-Chancellor and Principal
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