Five Year Plan 2008-2013 – A Summary

In June 2013, the university completed its first five-year strategic plan under the leadership of President Tracy Fitzsimmons, Ph.D. Shenandoah’s Strategic Plan 2008-2013 emerged from purposeful conversations, surveys and input sessions with all university constituency groups, including students, faculty, staff, trustees and community leaders. It was approved by the board of trustees in October 2008, providing an exciting strategic roadmap for our institution’s journey over the past five years. It also served as one of the first major projects initiated by President Fitzsimmons when she became Shenandoah’s 16th president on July 1, 2008. How well did we do? Here are highlights of the university’s major achievements over this five-year period.

Shenandoah University’s Top Four Goals

Goal 1:  ACADEMIC EXCELLENCE – Make academic excellence and learning success the highest priority.

Goal 2:  A PLACE OF CHOICE – Become a top choice for study, work and collaborative partnerships.

Goal 3: RECOGNITION & REPUTATION – Create an integrated marketing communications plan that is university-wide but allows for individualization of programs.

Goal 4:  ALIGN RESOURCES – Develop and align resources (financial, capital and human) to enhance, promote and strengthen the university.


Number of Actions Taken Toward Achieving our top four goals

Goal 1: Completed 91 of 96 actions (95%)

Goal 2: Completed 46 of 54 actions (85%)

Goal 3: Completed 20 of 20 actions (100%)

Goal 4: Completed 23 of 24 actions (96%)



Going Global: First-Year Seminar

100% Freshman Participation and Raises Global Awareness – As a result, Shenandoah has a higher rate of retention, more awareness of global issues and more students expressing an interest in going abroad.

All-Steinway Initiative (Launched 2011)

$3 Million – Fundraising campaign to achieve All-Steinway School Status

Replacing an again fleet of more than 100 pianos with Steinway or Steinway-made Bostons. – $1.385,990 Raised to date.



Shenandoah partnered with the local community to boost economic development initiatives while also increasing volunteer and service learning programs.

Apple Blossom | Solenberger Hall | Business Symposium | Partnership with Community Day


COOL SPRING – In April 2013, the Commonwealth of Virginia, Civil War Trust and Shenandoah University announced a public-private partnership to protect Cool Spring Battlefield, which played a crucial role in the July 18, 1864, Battle of Cool Spring. This property includes 195 acres of historic open space and nearly two miles of frontage along the Shenandoah River.

CELEBRATING 50 YEARS – 1960-2010 Shenandoah University – We’re Golden – 50 Years in Winchester – 50 Years of Nursing Excellence – 1962-2012

STUDENT NUMBERS – 1,227 Students Graduated in May 2012  – 2012 Yielded largest incoming freshman class with 464 students – Improved first-year retention rate from 70% to 80% in 2012

IMLEARNING PROGRAM (Established 2010) – Allows students to communicate with faculty, staff and classmates, while providing 24/7 access to class content and online resources that enhance classroom experiences.

SARAH’S GLEN (Dedicated 2012) – Sarah’s Glen is a beautifully designed garden with a signature oval lawn, a pavilion and a labyrinth honoring the late Sarah Brandt, daughter of Shenandoah University Trustee William Brandt and his wife, Elaine. Not only does Sarah’s Glen contribute to green space on campus, it also serves as a performance venue, an outdoor classroom, an events location, a gathering spot and a memorial garden.

NEW BRAND PLATFORM & SIGNATURE – In 2011, Shenandoah conducted researched and launched a new brand platform with a new institutional signature to express its unique mission, vision, values and personality.

SEPTEMBER 2012– Shenandoah Ranked 28th Among Regional Universities in the South by U.S. News & World Report

ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY PROGRAM – Who Has iMLearning equipment?  100% Full-time Undergraduate  Students.  100% Full-time Faculty and 78% Full-time Graduate students – Facilitates 24/7 learning.

INVOA EXPANSION – In February 2013, Shenandoah University and Inova signed a Memorandum of Understanding to expand graduate health education programs in Northern Virginia and strengthen the regional workforce. The partnership will bring Shenandoah’s nationally known graduate programs in occupational therapy (OT ), physical therapy (PT) and physician assistant (PA) studies to the university’s Northern Virginia Campus in Ashburn, Va., near Inova Loudoun Hospital.

NEW SCHOOL OF NURSING – Shenandoah University’s Eleanor Wade Custer School of Nursing gained school status with Kathryn Ganske, Ph.D., RN, as its first dean.



B.A. in Outdoor Leadership in Education:  Prepares students for positions in outdoor education and/or adventure centers; guiding/outfitting companies; not-for-profit and private campus; resorts, spas and wellness centers, state and national parks; campus recreation and youth development programs.

B.B.A in Entrepreneurship (major or minor):  Prepares students to launch their own for-profit businesses, serve as managers of family businesses, act as entrepreneurs within existing corporations or manage nonprofit businesses.

BBA in Health Care Management:  Integrates the biological sciences with core business courses to prepare leaders for the challenges of the evolving health care industry.  Program prepares students for graduate studies, managing small medical clinics/health care practices or large hospital administrative leadership.

B.S. in Public Health (major or minor):  Focuses on communities as “patients” and addresses health issues of entire populations, like disease prevention in rural and poor populations, emerging infectious diseases, aging populations and healthy lifestyle choices.

Graduate Certificate in Performing Arts Medicine:  A collaboration between the Division of Athletic Training and Shenandoah Conservatory, this certificate program educates health care professionals and performing arts educators in the prevention, assessments and management of injuries and disorders specific to dancers, theatre artists and musicians.

M.S. in Applied Behavior Analysis:  Prepares professionals to design environments that establish beneficial changes in behaviors.  Graduates serve a variety of populations, ranging from individuals with developmental and learning disabilities, traumatic brain injury; families experiencing challenges managing their children; to business professionals seeking to improve the performance of individuals in their organizations.

M.S. in Special Education:  Provides teachers with an advanced degree in special education.

 Click 5-year plan to view the Info-Link.