The University of KwaZulu-Natal has released its 2023-2032 Strategic Plan aimed at positioning the University as an international research-intensive institution of higher learning, contributing to practical approaches to the challenges facing humankind at every level.
This Strategic Plan, the most ambitious the University has developed since it was reconfigured in 2004, is expected to advance the Institution’s academic project to achieve the production of graduates with high levels of knowledge, skills and values who will be agents of change needed by society.
Vice-Chancellor and Principal Professor Nana Poku said the Strategic Plan took a long-term view, with a focus on Africa as the growth market while allowing flexibility in the delivery of the UKZN products, hence the 10-year proposed timeframe with inbuilt and continuous monitoring, evaluation, and reporting systems.
Poku said its successful implementation would entail a review of the resource allocation model to align with the academic strategy across the Colleges in the University. ‘It will also entail significant resources – human, intellectual, material and financial – from a diverse mix of means, including increased income from enterprises, University assets, alumni and strategic partnerships, with a specific emphasis on research grants.’
The Strategic Plan details the following five strategic goals the University aims to deliver during the 10-year period:
1. Excellent Teaching and Learning
2. Excellent Student Experience
3. Excellent and High Impact Research Innovation and Entrepreneurship
4. High Impact Societal and Stakeholder Community Engagement
5. Targeted Internationalisation
The plan is embedded in the ongoing Project Renewal that will catalyse the Institution to build on its service ethos, academic standing, history, tradition, and culture and help the realignment of the University’s academic and administrative structures with the changed and changing conditions under which all staff work.
UKZN Chancellor Dr Reuel Khoza said the plan provided a significant milestone in the history of the University and laid the foundation to propel UKZN to greater heights in its endeavour to maintain and further strengthen its status as the Premier University of African Scholarship. ‘Let us work together towards building a world-class university for a better future,’ said Khoza.
Chair of the UKZN Council Dr Leticia Moja said the Council was excited to be part of the ambitious and forward-looking University blueprint for the next 10 years. ‘We applaud the hard work and diligence of the members of the task team that developed the plan and the stakeholders for providing input in the strategic plan process.’
Poku also thanked the team who he said had worked tirelessly in facilitating consultation sessions and overseeing the development of the Plan, and the larger University community for supporting the process and providing input during consultations.
• The 2023-2032 Strategic Plan is available at: https://ukzn.ac.za/wp-content/uploads/2023/03/UKZN-Strat-Plan-spreads.pdf.