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ERIC Number: ED517059
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 46
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 55
ISBN: ISBN-1-8909-5660-0
Assessing and Forecasting Facilities in Higher Education Including the Top Facilities Issues. APPA Thought Leaders Series, 2010
Lunday, Elizabeth
APPA: Association of Higher Education Facilities Officers (NJ1)
The APPA (Association of Higher Education Facilities Officers) Thought Leaders Series turned five years old this year--a significant event in a momentous time for higher education. Participants in the 2010 symposium looked back at both the achievements and the missteps of higher education over the last half-decade, a period that posed many challenges for colleges and universities. Soaring enrollment, fluctuating energy prices, an economic crisis, demands for reform, sweeping changes in technology--all have stretched the resources and ingenuity of higher education leaders. The focus of this year's symposium was general, almost global, as the group worked to get a big picture of higher education in 2010. The group began by considering the origins and achievements of the Thought Leaders Series. Participants reviewed the results of previous symposia and evaluated the impact of the program on both higher education in general and facilities leaders in particular. This discussion is reviewed in Section II of this paper. Next, participants conducted what is known as a "SWOT analysis" on higher education, assessing the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats confronting colleges and universities. Participants identified the mission and scholarship of institutions as key strengths, while an inability to be nimble and a flawed business model were noted as weaknesses. Nevertheless, higher education has an opportunity to build a new business model and take advantage of technology, so long as it overcomes the threats posed by economic stressors and lack of leadership. The next stage of the symposium was devoted to identifying major issues confronting higher education now and in the next five, ten, and twenty years. The top issues identified were: (1) securing the future of higher education; (2) reduced public support for higher education; (3) a broken financial model; (4) communicating the value of higher education; (5) campus safety and security; (6) shifting workforce demographics; (7) global competition; and (8) developing leaders to drive change. Participants considered the ramifications of these issues and proposed approaches institutions should take to minimize potential negative impacts. Section III of this paper reviews both the SWOT analysis and these major issues. The Thought Leaders symposium then turned to what has become a signature discussion of the event: the identification of the critical facilities issues for 2010. The results are wide-ranging, reflecting the multiplicity of challenges facing higher education and the built environment: (1) Crafting an integrated strategic plan; (2) Achieving financial sustainability; (3) Creating change agents in facilities; (4) Addressing regulatory compliance; (5) Facing the challenge of changing demographics; (6) Creating an environmentally sustainable and energy efficient campus; (7) Managing the impact of technology; and (8) Addressing campus safety and security. The final stage of the Thought Leaders symposium introduced a new area of discussion: the role of the senior facilities officer within colleges and universities. Appendices include: (1) References and Resources; and (2) Participants in the 2010 Thought Leaders Symposium. [Support for this symposium was provided by the UGL Services. For "The Economy's Influence on Environmental Sustainability and Energy: Including the Top Ten Facilities Issues. APPA Thought Leaders Series, 2009", see ED514817.]
APPA: Association of Higher Education Facilities Officers. 1643 Prince Street, Alexandria, VA 22314-2818. Tel: 703-684-1446; Fax: 703-549-2772; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: APPA: Association of Higher Education Facilities Officers