Pathways for success - 2018-2023

(Adopted by  the Board of Trustees, April 2018)

Then the Lord replied: "Write down the revelation and make it plain on tablets so that a herald may run with it. For the revelation awaits an appointed time; it speaks of the end and will not prove false. Though it linger, wait for it; it will certainly come and will not delay." - Habakkuk 2:2-3

Mission of the university

(Adopted by the Board of Trustees, May 1997)

Southwest Baptist University is a Christ-centered, caring academic community preparing students to be servant leaders in a global society.

vision statement

(Adopted by the Board of Trustees, October 2003)

Southwest Baptist University fulfills its mission with specific care to guard its Christian distinctive and Baptist heritage as it demonstrates continuous improvement; enlarges its ministry through consistent growth in student enrollment, retention, and ethnic and racial diversity; markets the institution and its mission regionally and nationally; fosters an environment of open communication and service to others; and cares for employees through competitive compensation and benefits packages. 

strategic plan, 2018-2023

Strategic Planning is a disciplined process by which SBU seeks to create a future environment through informed decisions and actions. The process includes a university-wide review of pertinent data and the examination of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. Within that context, SBU has identified seven initiatives that will be used to guide, shape and transform the future of the University. Goals, objectives and strategies will be established based on the seven initiatives. SBU will utilize this planning process to ensure good stewardship of resources investing in human, technological and physical resources.

i. Prepare students, which is the focus of our mission — Luke 2:52

SBU will focus on helping each student achieve their unique educational objectives. Students will be engaged through a holistic approach to learning, acknowledging the importance of intellectual growth with opportunities to develop social, cultural and spiritual maturity.

  1. Foster a system of personal, academic, and career advising that supports the holistic development of each student.
  2. Foster an atmosphere of serving students that is effective, user-friendly, nurturing, and affirming, establishing a University-wide culture of service.
  3. Foster a culture that engages students by providing an environment that challenges them to grow intellectually, socially, culturally, physically, and spiritually.
  4. Create a culture of kindness, service, and justice.

ii. commit to building a caring community for our employees — Ecclesiastes 4:9-10

Recognizing that people are most fulfilled when they are making a difference in the lives of others, SBU will focus on employee value, growth and development in all aspects of the employee’s university experience.

  1. Provide appropriate compensation and benefits for employees. 
  2. Educate employees to become more effective managers and leaders of their employee resources. 
  3. Provide ongoing employee training programs that address the specific needs of the employee and department with the goal of improved satisfaction, efficiency and effectiveness. 
  4. Recognize and celebrate employee achievements and their contributions to the University's success.

iii. Focus on expanding the SBU community — 2 Corinthians 9:10-11

Recognizing that enrollment and retention are University-wide efforts, SBU will embrace opportunities aimed toward marketing the University to validate student decisions to enroll, persist and graduate.

  1. Assess and improve strategies to increase retention, persistence, and graduation rates.
  2. Foster a culture where each employee understands his/her role in the student experience.
  3. Identify, target and recruit new student groups.
  4. Develop new curricula and co-curricular programs that appeal to today’s students and meet the demands for current and future career paths.
  5. Assess and improve the strategic enrollment and marketing plan that promotes our visibility and maximizes our University resources.

iv. Support the academic community and the preparation of students — Proverbs 1:5

SBU will develop a culture devoted to teaching excellence by using best practices in pedagogy and instructional design, implementing effective assessment strategies, utilizing assessment results for continuous improvement and keeping student learning as our primary objective.

  1. Invest strategically in faculty and staff to improve academic programs and University services. 
  2. Strategically utilize the Center for Teaching and Learning to provide pedagogical resources for faculty.
  3. Maximize the use of assessment data to improve student learning and teaching effectiveness.
  4. Continue the University’s commitment to Higher Learning Commission and discipline-specific accreditation.

v. Integrate our Christ-centered mission into all aspects of University life — Micah 6:6-8

SBU will be a leading University in setting the standard for faith integration. In addition to the integration of faith in the academic disciplines, each area of the University will foster a Christ-centered culture.

  1. Foster a Christ-centered culture for each University work unit.
  2. Support the development of faculty in the integration of faith and discipline.
  3. Support scholarship and research that encourage faith integration.

vi. Position the University for global influence — Joshua 3:5

SBU will highlight achievements, activities and awards of faculty, staff and students. The University will explore ways to demonstrate institutional pride, school spirit and our Baptist heritage.

  1. Continually communicate the distinctives and strengths of the SBU experience to internal and external constituents. 
  2. Create new and showcase existing tradition-building initiatives that promote SBU pride and school spirit. 
  3. Develop a more inviting and environmentally conscious physical presence for the University.

vii. Promote stewardship as an integral part of a Christ-centered, caring community — Luke 14:28-29

Ensure University resources are dedicated to their highest and best use through careful stewardship. University resources include finances, employees, physical plan and technology.

  1. Promote good stewardship within each University unit.
  2. Strive for continuous improvement in the planning and budgeting process to increase financial resources and maximize stewardship.
  3. Leverage data and emphasize financial health for strategic decision making.
  4. Support fundraising and revenue generation efforts that enhance University resources.