SUNY Erie is an aging institution. Its North Campus is now 65 years old while the others have been operational for four or five decades. SUNY Erie’s facilities are nearing the end of their useful life and the college must modernize them in order to remain viable. While patchwork maintenance can always be performed, the cost of that maintenance is simply too high for existing buildings to be sustainable over the long term. There must be a shift toward new construction.
Over the coming years, SUNY Erie will study its own physical plant and make strategic
decisions about the buildings, facilities, and instructional spaces that are no longer
functional for educational purposes. Facilities performance indicators are being adopted
to assist the college in making these strategic decisions. A culture of evidence-based
management will become the guiding force behind all facilities decisions during this
SUNY Erie will pursue the following operational initiatives:
Facilities Master Plan
SUNY Erie will develop a facilities master plan that controls our facilities development, fully assesses physical plant capabilities and limitations in all campuses and buildings, and coheres with curriculum planning. New construction that focuses on emerging industries like nanotechnology and alternative energy production will be fully leveraged to ease the burden on the remainder of the physical plant. SUNY Erie will continue to seek improved capital support for new construction to replace aging facilities that cost taxpayers and students substantially more to operate than new facilities.
- A comprehensive study of all instructional spaces at the college
- The repurposing of vacated instructional spaces
- Student housing at all campuses
- Adoption of facilities performance indicators, benchmarks, and regular assessment in order to promote a culture of evidence-based facilities management
Administrative Process Review
SUNY Erie will review every business process in every unit in order to seek out duplicative or wasteful processes. Early emphasis is being placed on analysis of the course scheduling process in order to right-size the schedule to match the needs of our students and make smarter use of our facilities. The driving objective of this review will be to promote a culture of evidence-based management in all academic and administrative units of the college.
- Train all unit managers in business process analysis
- Incorporate business process review for all units through Program Review
While SUNY Erie faces serious facilities challenges, it has a world-class technological infrastructure with which to serve the needs of students, faculty, and staff. We will leverage those technologies even more than we already do in order to reduce the burden on our physical plant.
These changes will focus on improvements in classroom instructional technology, adaptive online learning, lecture capture, and the technologies that are overtaking higher education. All of these tools, however, require training and support. To support the rapid pace of technological change in higher education the college will move toward increased use of self-service training via online training platforms. The same trend toward self-service is also evident when it comes to data, and so the college will seek out new resource planning tools in key administrative areas in order to significantly reduce expenses in those areas and improve data quality.
- Assess space and technology needs for all academic and administrative units in order to establish long-term requirements and minimize unplanned requests
- Implement new Enterprise Resource Planning tools and business processes in Payroll, Human Resources, and Finance