2020-2025 Strategic Plan

I. Enrollment, Retention and Student Success

Commitment 1 

We will make our University a destination of first choice for an increasing number of students from around the state, from across the region, and beyond.

Objective 1. 

We will increase philanthropic support for scholarship, both annual and endowment.

Metric 1.1. 

We will measure total dollars and raised with the goal to increase total dollars by at least 5% each year.

Metric 1.2. 

We will measure total number of endowed scholarships secured with a goal to increase by at least 5% each year.

Metric 1.3. 

We will measure donor participation with the goal to increase the number of donors by at least 5% each year.

Metric 1.4. 

We will increase alumni donor participation to the Annual Fund by at least 1% each year.

Objective 2. 

We will increase philanthropic support for study abroad, internships and the Mission Endowment Fund.

Metric 2.1. 

We will track the number of donors and gifts received to support these student immersion experiences.

Objective 3. 

We will partner with the Center for Personal and Professional Development to increase and strengthen Gardner-Webb’s network of alumni and friends in an effort to provide job placement, internships and other student success opportunities.

Metric 3.1. 

We will track the number of partnerships—corporate and others—secured on an annual basis.

Metric 3.2. 

We will track the number promotional emails and events to evaluate the partnership with the Center for Personal and Professional Development.

Objective 4. 

We will partner with Athletics to improve “game day experience” and event attendance.

Metric 4.1. 

We will track Bulldog Club membership, athletic event attendance and total number of events hosted.

II. Strengthening GWU’s Financial Base

Commitment 2

We will increase and diversify the sources of revenue needed to sustain the growth and strengthening of our vibrant, comprehensive University.

Objective 5. 

We will increase all fundraising activity and dollars raised through University Advancement.

Metric 5.1. 

We will create a baseline of total dollars raised in FY2020-21 through our new system and compare to following fiscal years with a goal of increasing the total dollars raise by 10% each year.

Metric 5.2. 

We will track total number of gifts in FY2020-21 and compare to following fiscal years.

Metric 5.3. 

We will measure activity metrics for front line staff including meetings, solicitations and other activity through year-to-year comparison.

Objective 6. 

We will collaborate with campus partners to seek naming opportunities for each College/School.

Metric 6.1. 

We will measure the number of gift solicitations completed and the number of colleges and schools that are named.

Objective 7. 

We will prepare for and launch an ambitious, achievable, comprehensive campaign.

Metric 7.1. 

We will prioritize list of fundable projects and needs across campus.

Metric 7.2. 

We will partner with a third-party consultant to conduct feasibility study.

Objective 8. 

We will strengthen the University Advancement budgets through careful stewardship of the Advancement Investment Fee (AIF) and other fee structures.

Metric 8.1. 

We will continuously evaluate the AIF to determine its effectiveness and measure percentage of budget provided by Advancement Fee structure as it compares to funding methods.

Objective 9. 

We will implement more robust Annual and Planned Giving strategies that will generate consistent and long-term funding to support the University’s priorities.

Metric 9.1. 

We will measure the number of dollars, donors and retained donors that use annual giving vehicles.

Metric 9.2. 

We will evaluate the number of solicitation tools and methods for both Annual and Planned giving with emphasis on cost effectiveness.

Metric 9.3. 

We will measure the number of planned gifts booked.

Objective 10. 

We will improve our donor stewardship programs to increase donor retention.

Metric 10.1. 

We will measure the number of repeat donors compared to previous years.

III. Become An Indispensable Partner To The Town, County, and Region

Commitment 3

Gardner-Webb University is a private university with a very public mission. We will increase our positive impact in the broader community and in the region by partnering with those who share our interest in improving the quality of life in Cleveland County and beyond.

Objective 11. 

Alumni Association will launch a strategy to create regional chapters in local and targeted markets.

Metric 11.1. 

We will track the number of alumni engaged and number of events hosted by each chapter.

Metric 11.2. 

We will document how GWU alumni are a positive force for good in the communities they call home to help University Marketing identify potential alumni stories.

Objective 12. 

We will intentionally develop our partnership with the Town of Boiling Springs.

Metric 12.1. 

We will track the number of Town events we attend including Town Council meetings and Town sponsored festivals.

IV. Respect Our Heritage, Extend Our Brand, and Sharpen Our Identity

Commitment 4. 

We will achieve and sustain a reputation as North Carolina’s leader in Christian higher education.

Objective 13. 

We will partner with the Office of Christian Life and Service to promote the church-matching and ministers’ dependent scholarships by creating opportunities for the President and strategic employees to visit with pastors and youth ministers.

Metric 13.1. 

We will measure increases in the recruitment yield from church-matching and ministers’ dependent scholarships.

Metric 13.2. 

We will measure the number of participating churches.

Objective 14. 

We will increase support of the Christian Service Organization and launch a launch a strategy to streamline all ministerial scholarship under the CSO umbrella.

Metric 14.1. 

We will measure the amount of money raised and number of donors.

Metric 14.2. 

We will document the success of the new strategy.

Objective 15. 

We will collaborate with the Office of Christian Life and Service and School of Divinity to create Religion and Culture Public Lecture Series.

Metric 15.1. 

We will track total dollars raised to support the series.

Metric 15.2. 

We will track number of personal invitations and engagement opportunities provided through University Advancement.