Strategic Plan, 2019-2024

Since 2018, President Deanne H. Emilio, JD, the Steering Committee, and University faculty and staff have been hard at work brainstorming, planning, and executing Gwynedd Mercy University’s new Strategic Plan.

The Strategic Plan serves as a five-year roadmap for the University, detailing how it will adapt to the constantly shifting higher education landscape. Amidst exciting projects and opportunities, such as new Healthcare Innovation Campus, the plan will also keep the University’s goals and growth in line with our mission and values.

Developing the Plan

Planning kicked off in March 2018 with a GMercyU Community Day, which brought the campus community together to submit their thoughts and ideas of where they saw the University heading in five years. The activity was led by CREDO, an organization that specializes in strategic planning for higher education institutions. CREDO is our partner through the Strategic Planning process and implementation. Using the feedback, ideas, and views gathered from the University community, CREDO helped us develop a Strategy Map — a visual representation of our institution’s strategy to achieve our goals:


The map details the four themes at the core of the Strategic Plan: Distinctive Teaching and Learning; Transformative Student Experience; Empowered Community; and Compelling Brand. Each pillar houses various objectives and initiatives specific to that theme:

Distinctive Teaching and Learning: This theme is focused on developing cutting-edge new programs as well as existing GMercyU programs. It also includes a focus on innovative spaces and technology for our students.

Transformative Student Experience: This theme is focused on our students’ experiences at GMercyU and how we can fulfill their needs and exceed their expectations. This includes developing partnerships for experiential learning opportunities, such as internships, clinicals, study abroad, student teaching, undergraduate research, and more.

Empowered Community: In order to support our students, we need to have a strong and empowered community. This theme includes initiatives focused on improving technology and systems so faculty and staff can work more efficiently and proactively. This theme also focuses on our Campus Master Plan, which includes plans to develop and utilize the new East Campus.

Compelling Brand: Centered around creating WOW experiences for our community and crafting irresistible stories, this theme includes initiatives involving alumni, new traditions and experiences, and more support for student success.

Through the Strategic Plan, the University also has developed a Vision Statement to help guide the University as we embark on this ambitious plan. The Vision Statement, along with the overall plan and implementation, is meant to inspire everyone in the GMercyU community to work together to accomplish the overall goals of the Strategic Plan.

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In August 2018, volunteers from across campus began working on Theme Teams, created to start developing individual initiatives within each of the four themes. All four Theme Teams consisted of approximately 60 members of the University community who gathered during the months of August and September for a total of four two-hour meetings. Based on the work of the Theme Teams, the Strategic Plan draft was completed in October 2018.

Once the draft of the plan was in place, President D’Emilio hosted a Community Affirmation of the Strategic Plan event in November 2018 where faculty and staff could offer their feedback before it was submitted to the Board of Trustees for approval. On December 5, 2018, the Strategic Plan was enthusiastically approved by our Board of Trustees, and we excitedly prepared for its implementation in January 2019.

Plan Progress

Gwynedd Mercy University enters the final year of our five-year Strategic Plan in 2023 with much of the plan already accomplished, including the milestones shared below.

  • The Griffin Edge, a personal and professional development program for all undergraduate students
  • Campus Transformations informed by a Facilities Master Plan that touch nearly every aspect of the student experience, including the future Frances M. Maguire Healthcare Innovation Campus
  • Exciting new campus traditions – such as the Christmas Tree Lighting Celebration and the Ribbon Tradition during Orientation – that complement older, treasured traditions
  • More than a dozen established partnerships that support enrollment and student success
  • Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Strategic Plan, launched in 2021 to create more equitable, inclusive campus culture
  • Athletic Strategic Plan (to be posted soon)
  • Strategic Enrollment Plan
  • Student Success Strategic Plan to improve student success and retention, informed by a years-long “Moving the Needle” (MTN) campus-wide initiative

Download a copy of the Strategic Plan (PDF).