Queen’s to expand student services in light of increased enrolment

Goal is to focus on services as a whole, rather than specific improvements

The University has created an ad hoc committee to develop a strategic plan to expand student resources and accommodate an increase in enrolment.

The plan will accord with the University’s Long-Term Strategic Enrolment Management Framework, which identifies services like Health, Counselling and Disability Services as having limited capacity. The framework also identifies the need to increase student support services, as well as continuously re-assess their capacity.

The committee was created by Provost and Vice Principal of Academics Alan Harrison, and is chaired by Ann Tierney, vice-provost and dean of student affairs.

Tierney said the primary goal of the ad hoc committee, which was created in the "last week or two", is to focus on services as a whole rather than to provide suggestions to improve specific services right away.

The plan will identify what the evolving needs of students are, what’s already provided to students and what services the University needs more of, she added.

"I think that the committee is really going to look very broadly,” she said. “At the start, we're not focusing in on any particular service.

"We're looking at what we need and then wherever the identified needs may be, that unit — whether it's a faculty or a student service — would then look within its own budget that it has, to see if it could adapt and/or in part of the University budget make a submission.”

She added that the committee was created in response to discussions at last fall's Board-Senate retreat, which, according to a Board of Trustees report to Senate based on a Sept. 19 meeting, focused on the “broader student learning experience in a changing post-secondary environment”.

“From my understanding, that's where [the committee] comes from, because we're always looking at student service provision in part of the whole enrolment planning process.”

"It's always a good idea to periodically review what services you have across the campus and look to others across the sectors, to see what are the needs of the ever-changing student population and making sure that we're consistent with University priorities," she said.

Because some services are inside faculties, others are provided by student government and others are provided by the University’s student affairs division, Tierney said, it’s important to identify where the services as a whole need to go in line with Queen’s priorities.

She added that the committee will begin scheduling membership and committee meetings, and will submit a draft of the planning document by July 1.

"I'm very excited because it's wonderful to be able to look at the whole University and get everybody, inside the faculties, inside the AMS, the SGPS, all the different places that are working to support student service together, to look at all the services," she said.

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