l quality faculty.
• Attraction and Retention of Quality Faculty and Staff
We have great quality of faculty and staff here but not everyone understands the benefits
of living in Murray and this part of Kentucky. When we go to attract and recruit people once
again it is like our student base, we must sell them on this University and make them realize that
they are not going to lose anything by coming to Murray State University. It is increasingly
difficult in rural areas to attract quality faculty and staff. We must pay more attention to this issue
I in the years to come.
• Advancing the Residential College System
Professor Muscio has pointed out that many of the initiatives currently going on are being
copied everywhere on our residential college system. It is working and it is one of many reasons
our graduation rate is high. It is an important reason; it is an important foundation for our campus
to make sure we continue to see this as an important initiative that distinguishes MSU from the
pack. This is what we have been working on for the last four or five years. Demographically, we
do not have the student base that many other states do. We have traditionally been lumped in with
other universities unthout distinguishing characteristics. We have worked very hard on
distinguishing Murray State and the outcomes that make the difference, comparing our institutions
so that when people start looking at universities they don’t lump us together with other
comprehensive universities like they used to do. Because then it becomes more of an issue of
proximity and location. If you don’t have any distinguishing characteristics, the main issue of
why students are going to go to college will be nothing more than location because you don’t
outrank or you don’t outperform any other universities in your area. So they are going to go to the
nearest institution. They must know why it is important to drive farther and come farther to come
to Murray State and to leave their state to go to MSU. Maintaining our public ivy status, excelling
in these outcomes, and then telling people over and over again about these outcomes, are really
’ the key factors in distinguishing ourselves in a highly competitive market place that is so
complicated and complex today that "for profit" universities are popping up on every street corner
taking advantage of the lack of information.
• Distinguishing MSU from the pack
Keeping ourselves distinguished from the pack is important so that students understand the
difference, they understand why it’s important. It may not simply be an issue of low cost or
location but it is an issue of ranking, doing well and outcomes and helping parents understand the
differences in these outcomes.
Those are the challenges I think we face. The college road bubble will end about 2012 and
the high school graduation classes will start declining again. If Murray State hasn’t defined or
distinguished itself outside of this region, it will be increasingly difficult for us to expand our
enrollments and bring students in from farther away. This will have an impact on how
universities recruit students and will increase the market competition for students all over the
country as they rev up to go after the same number of students with more resources. So there is a
window here of about seven years to keep distinguishing ourselves to build on our name as a great
university and a great place to go, study and graduate. One of the challenges is to stay our course,
otherwise we are going to have our own demographic issues and there will be issues that surface
with relation to enrollment declines in the future.
I I have enjoyed this opportunity immensely and I have enjoyed working with all of you.
(See Attachment #1)
Report of the Chair
Chair Sparks deferred to Faculty Regent Terry Strieter who read two resolutions from the