Building Community strategic plan outlines goals, charts the way forward

The UW School of Medicine and Public Health has published the five-year strategic plan for its Building Community program, the latest installment in the effort’s growing online presence.

Building Community is a fundamental transition in how the school approaches its working and learning environment. It is a call to action to examine the ways in which everyone within the school can build a more inclusive, collegial and respectful community.

The 2018-2023 strategic plan summarizes how Building Community began and where it plans to go in the future. One of the plan’s key strengths is how it couples inspiring individual action with institutional process and structural improvements.

“While we have recently made great strides toward improving the environment in which we work and learn, we recognize that there is still much work to be done to fully realize our vision,” writes Dean Robert N. Golden, MD, in the plan’s introduction. “This is a call to action for everyone within our school to examine the ways in which we can build the most inclusive, collegial and respectful community.”

The strategic plan highlights the school’s motivations for embarking on Building Community, aligns with the school’s newly unveiled mission, vision, and values, and describes the initiative’s foundation, process, strategic directions, and initial priorities.

It summarizes current and future work teams and committees that will make the strategic plan a reality, as well as how to get involved in them. Recommendations, priorities, and goals in the strategic plan are the product of three initial strategic planning teams focused on equity, inclusion and engagement, professionalism and accountability, and well-being.

“Building Community in SMPH is more important than ever and there is no better time to get involved,” says Elizabeth Petty, MD, Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and executive sponsor of Building Community.

“Our community must continue to navigate the unprecedented complexities associated with the prolonged COVID-19 pandemic and effectively address the longstanding endemic of structural racism. Neither is easy. In addition to a recently formed interprofessional learner wellness group, we are launching two new workgroups. One will focus on developing well-being initiatives for all student, staff, and faculty members of our school and the other will focus on reviewing school policies through a diversity, equity, and inclusion lens.”

Read the strategic plan and consider how to get involved and how Building Community can be infused throughout all aspects of life in SMPH, from working and learning to events and personal interactions. For additional information or to get involved in Building Community please fill out the contact form or email buildingcommunity@med.wisc.edu and the Building Community Team will be in touch.

“I am grateful for all of the wonderful work that has been done by members of the Building Community administrative team, steering committee, and workgroups to date,” adds Petty. “They have set the stage and helped script the next steps for us to accelerate this important work. We would love to have you join us on one of the upcoming workgroups or an upcoming event.”

— by Kaine Korzekwa