Lake Superior State University Strategic Plan 2020-2025

“Superior Education, Superior Experience, Superior You”

In August of 2019, the Board of Trustees and President Rodney Hanley called for the development of a new institutional strategic plan and appointed a committee comprised of seven faculty and staff to draft that plan.  The committee held listening sessions to give voice to multiple constituencies in the new Strategic Plan. These constituencies included students, faculty, staff, Tribal Leaders, advisory boards, alumni, and community members. An online survey was created to allow for anonymous input, and received 30 responses. Thirty-five sessions were held with a total attendance of over 300 people. The sessions were facilitated to focus on the future of the university and the directions needed to achieve a prosperous future.  This document truly represents broad input from wide-ranging constituencies.  The committee’s draft document was turned over to the President and Senior Management Team for their review, input and approval.

The Strategic Plan was approved by the Board of Trustees on April 24, 2020.

LSSU Strategic Plan 2020-2025



We equip our graduates with the knowledge, practical skills, and inner strength to craft a life of meaningful employment, personal fulfillment, and generosity of self within an inclusive atmosphere, all while enhancing the quality of life of the Great Lakes region and the world.


We believe in an innovation-driven, transformative education for all. We identify potential, enable success, drive social mobility, and develop students into professionally prepared graduates who excel locally, nationally and globally.

Core Values:

  • Excellence in Teaching and Learning: Student learning is our first priority and focuses on providing student/faculty interaction, learning, and research in current, relevant programs.
  • Opportunity: Students have a wide range of opportunities to grow academically, professionally, culturally and socially. Opportunities are provided via work-study assignments, student organizations, internships, community outreach and leadership.
  • Diversity: Students experience a campus community environment that is inclusive and welcoming.
  • Ethics and Values: The University promotes an environment that values freedom of expression, the pursuit of truth, honesty, openness, and courteous behavior where everyone is treated with respect.
  • Stewardship: LSSU provides a framework in which to leave the university and region financially and environmentally sound for future generations of LSSU students, alumni, and friends.

The Aspirational Values of the Strategic Plan are:

  • Global Interdependence – As part of a global society we promote and celebrate exchange among world cultures through international student recruitment, on-campus support for international students, and promotion of opportunities abroad for students, faculty, and staff. Thus, we bring LSSU to the world and the world to LSSU.
  • Social Mobility – At LSSU, we are committed to equal access to higher education opportunities that lead to social mobility. LSSU’s supportive, personalized, and welcoming atmosphere particularly benefits first-generation students and those from diverse socioeconomic backgrounds. As one of the few four-year universities in Michigan that grants associate degrees, we are uniquely poised to serve students through the Tuition Incentive Program (or TIP) funding, while facilitating a smooth transition from an associate degree to a bachelor’s degree with guaranteed application of all credits. We are committed to providing resources to students that lead to their success.
  • Innovation – LSSU embraces innovation as an aspirational value. Given demographic, political, technological, and policy shifts affecting higher education, the University cannot – and will not – stand still. Innovation in the context of this strategic plan means we will unveil new academic programs and enact new processes and methods of teaching; develop new enrollment-driven initiatives; enrich the student experience with both tradition and bold new efforts that enhance the overall student experience; and enhance support networks and interventions for student success. Our innovative process will rely on a strong culture of assessment and data-informed decisions to drive student success and University growth.