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Brandeis plans to quadruple spending on campus renovations

Posted by Your Town  March 8, 2013 04:37 PM

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After more than a year of collaboration among students, faculty, administrators, and trustees, Brandeis University has released a draft of its strategic plan, which calls for a number of steps, including quadrupling the $2.5 million the university spends on campus renovations.

In addition to renovating and renewing buildings, the university also plans to redesign outdoor spaces, the draft released Tuesday said.

“Our facilities have a practical influence on the work we do at Brandeis and are also the most tangible expression of our values and commitments,” the draft said, adding that the campus master plan will also have to be updated.

The 80-page draft outlines numerous goals for the university, such as increasing diversity among the student body, and attracting “top-notch” faculty and staff.

According to the draft, more than 40 percent of Brandeis faculty are aged 60 or older. Going forward, the university plans to hire mostly at the junior level and only hire at the senior level “when this will make a crucial difference to an academic program.”

“A first-rate university must have a first-rate faculty, and that requires not only rigorous procedures for hiring and promotion, but also competitive compensation and benefits that enable us to compete with our peer institutions,” the plan states.

In the fall of 2011, the Strategic Planning Steering Committee was established by Brandeis President Frederick Lawrence, and included administrators, faculty members, students, and trustees. The committee formed numerous task forces, which were “asked to articulate a long-range direction for its area,” and recommend steps that the university should take over the next five years.

“This plan faces squarely what we must do to ensure the continued vitality of the Brandeis model - a liberal arts university dedicated to excellence in both teaching and research,” the plan states. “It also sets out what we can and should do - at a higher level of financial investment - to strengthen the university in various ways. And it culminates in what we aspire to do, if we are able to secure the necessary resources, to build on the key strengths, transforming excellence into greatness.”

Katherine Landergan can be reached at klandergan@globe.com. For campus news updates, follow her on Twitter @klandergan.

Looking for more coverage of area colleges and universities? Go to our Your Campus pages.

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