2002-2005 goals and priorities

Mission Statement

The Rhode Island Board of Governors for Higher Education (RIBGHE) has as its mission the promotion and operation of an excellent, efficient, and affordable system of higher education from the community college through graduate and professional school levels. The primary purposes of the system are to provide residents of the state with access to higher education free of discrimination, and to enrich the intellectual, economic, social and cultural life of the community.


Higher Education and Quality of Life


The mission statement for Rhode Island's system of higher education demonstrates the linkage between a quality system of higher education and the quality of life of the residents of the state. In fact, that linkage has never been clearer. The report on conference proceedings from the April 2002 conference entitled The Future of Higher Education in Rhode Island: A Blueprint for the Next Decade states: "In the next decade, Rhode Island's colleges and universities will play a make-or-break role in development of a new state economy that will be based on innovation, information and technology. Higher education must deliver the knowledge and skills the state's residents need to secure well-paying jobs."


Higher Education and the Economy

The links (between a highly educated work force and the strength of the state's economy are also clearer now than at anytime in the nation's history. Today’s global economy has driven Rhode Island's economy to move from an emphasis on manufacturing to service and finally to today’s knowledge-based economy. A 1997 report by the Rhode Island Economic Policy Council (EPC) entitled "Meeting the Challenge of the New Economy" states: "In the new economy, knowledgeable workers are the single most important factor to production. Rhode Island needs to be more innovative, not only in the development of new products, processes and services, but also in the adoption of existing technology and diffusion of knowledge. In these areas higher education institutions are the linchpins and the conclusion is obvious: the ability of Rhode Island to flourish in the new economy is inextricably linked to higher education.”

These links, between higher education and quality of life, and between higher education and the strength of the state's economy) set the context that is intended to drive RIBGHE's priorities from 2002-2005 and beyond. According to the 2000 census, 26% of adult Rhode Island residents possess a bachelor’s degree or higher. In contrast, leading states show baccalaureate attainment rates of 32-34% for adults. Rhode Island ranks 18th nationally and 5th in New England on this measure.


Statement of the Major Goal

Improve Rhode Island's educational attainment to that of leading states by 2015 to ensure that Rhode Island's residents possess the skills and knowledge required to thrive in an information-age, knowledge-based economy.


Priorities

To support and make progress toward achieving this goal, the Board of Governors for Higher Education establishes the following priorities for 2002-2005:

Preparation -- Improve the preparation of Rhode Island's residents to succeed in higher education through PreK-16/20 collaboration.

The following proposed strategies and actions are designed to advance the priority on preparation.

Strategies and Actions


Key Questions

Addressing key questions will help assess whether we are making progress in advancing each priority.


Key Indicators

Participation -- Improve participation and graduation rates in higher education.

Strategies and Actions

Key questions

Key Indicators

Strategies and Actions

Key Questions

Key Indicators

Strategies and Actions

Key questions

Key Indicators

Tools to Assess Progress

Achieving progress in advancing each priority and improving overall educational attainment will be supported by the use of three major tools.

  1. provide evidence regarding each question
  2. ensure the quality of programs and services
  3. assess whether progress is being made toward achieving the major goal and each priority.
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Last updated September 19, 2003