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Effective use of resources: SCUP-11 in retrospect: Integrating Academic, Fiscal, and Facilities Planning.


ON JULY 22, 1976 AT SCUP-11 IN WASHINGTON, DC, I gave my first-ever presentation at a SCUP meeting--a presentation that eventually became this article. Little did I imagine that this initial step would be the first in a marathon-like relationship with SCUP that would endure for all these subsequent years. How could I ever have foreseen that this venture would lead to my decades-long participation in the Society's Pre-Conference Seminars titled "An Introduction to Planning and Planning Processes for Persons New to the Field." I owe a great deal to the past and present members of this Society and, on this our Fiftieth Anniversary, I say, congratulations, thanks for all you have taught me and "thanks for the memories."

The title of my address in 1976 was, "Integrating Academic, Fiscal and Facilities Planning;" and I mention this bit of SCUP history to demonstrate a truth that all SCUPers know, namely, "integrated planning" is more than a slogan or mantra for our members. Indeed, it is not an exaggeration to say that "integrated planning" is a "core value" for us all. Moreover, given this archeological evidence of a speech dating back to the end of the first decade of the Society's existence, one could say, metaphorically, that "integrated planning is a horse that the members of our Society have been riding" for a long time--and never to its exhaustion.

It is now thirty-nine years later and I am left with one enduring memory of this event, i.e., my first solo flight with SCUP, and one strongly held belief. My enduring memory is this. My talk was given in a very large ballroom before a large crowd. It may have been something like the plenary sessions we have today. As was the style then, I brought fifty or more state-of-the-art 35mm slides to illustrate the points I planned to make as I gave my seventeen-page paper. And then, disaster struck. In a test run with the audio visual technician, a slide became stuck in the projector. To this day, I can remember watching helplessly, ten minutes before the start of my talk, while the technician removed the carousel, took off the restraining ring on its top, turned the carousel upside down to see if he could spot the source of the jamb, and, in the process, spilled all of my slides on to the floor of the ballroom.

Aside from the above "enduring memory," of my long-ago experience with a slide projector; I also am left with an "enduring conviction" that formed the taking-off point for my presentation on integrated planning. The following was my belief about integrated planning then (and it is still my belief today) and it comes from the first page of my 1976 paper.

"The topic of this paper is not so much, 'how to prepare an integrated plan,' but rather, 'how to develop an environment wherein the practice of integrated planning will take hold and flourish'." Getting immediately to the point, I then said:

"Aside from strong support by the chief executive, the most important determinants of the ease with which academic, fiscal, and facilities planning will be integrated in any institution are:

* The organizational structure of the institution,

* The charge given the Planning Office, and

* The persistence and relevance of the planning effort."

I have been retired from university work for about sixteen years and from consulting in higher education for about four years. Moreover, one can imagine that West Virginia University, which I left in 1982 and which is the institutional example for the points I made in my article, has (like all universities), undergone changes in its administrative processes, structure and leadership over the intervening years. Having duly noted the above, the core ideas in the following article represent my humble and at-arms-length affirmation of what I think is still true about the universal world of integrated planning in higher education. My hope is that you, the reader, will find these ideas to be interesting, thought-provoking, and useful.

by Raymond M. Haas
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Title Annotation:FEATURE ARTICLE REPRINT; Society for College and University Planning
Author:Haas, Raymond M.
Publication:Planning for Higher Education
Article Type:Conference notes
Date:Apr 1, 2015
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