Skip to main content

The Process

Those who dream big are often told it's impossible. It's too hard, too much. But the visionaries, the forward thinkers, the , the entrepreneurs ... they keep going. They open their minds to new possibilities. They push forward. And they create profound change.

As a Catholic, Marianist institution, we embrace these dreamers. These bold thinkers who inspire adaptation and change. And at our own University, we look for opportunities to find new methods for new times. We look to the future boldly and courageously — with imagination, resilience faith. It's in our DNA.

Now, we are called to work in and create an aspirational vision for the University of Dayton for the next 20 years. Our challenge, our goal? To prepare our students — the center of our visioning process — to change the world fundamentally. Why? Because they dream of making the world a better place, and when it is their turn to lead, we want them to be prepared to tackle problems as lofty as the moon landing or as critical to the human condition as ending Apartheid.


More than 3,000 alumni, faculty, staff, students, trustees, supporters and community leaders have weighed in on the University's strategic vision. Events were held on campus, in cities across the country and online, via Facebook Live.

Our goal? Develop a few powerful, transformational ideas that will provide strategic direction, help prioritize investments, spark private support at higher levels — and move the University to a new level of excellence.


In fall 2016, faculty and staff were engaged in a myriad of visioning opportunities. Drop-in sessions were held on topics related to each working group, and Future Vision Labs offered participants a creative and immersive way to imagine UD's future. On Oct. 6, 2017, the entire campus community came together for Visioning Day, where we were encouraged to think big and dream about the possibilities for our future.

In spring 2017, faculty and staff were invited to attend drop-in sessions and provide preliminary feedback to working group recommendations. 

On May 8, 2017, the entire campus community was invited to participate in Strategy Day -  unique, transdisciplinary exploration of how best to make our UD vision a concrete reality.


In 13 cities, alumni joined President Eric F. Spina for a lively and candid conversation about the future of their alma mater. Dialogue centered around these questions:

  • Which UD core value is most important to you? 
  • Today, what differentiates UD from other universities? What are our strengths?
  • Think 20 years from now. What areas of excellence will the University be known for nationally and internationally?


Each week, we a new, thought-provoking question to spark discussion — across campus and in our alumni communities around the world — about the University of Dayton's future.

Topics included:

  • What are the most significant trends you have seen in American society over the last 20 years?  What do you think will be an important trend over the next 20 years, and how might it be relevant to higher education in the U.S.?
  • What are some of the most important changes you have seen at UD since you first arrived here as a member of the faculty or staff or as a student?
  • What do you see as UD's greatest competitive advantages presently?  What are our greatest competitive limitations currently?
  • Experiential learning has been identified as an especially valuable dimension of a UD undergraduate education. What would an ideal experiential learning environment at look like at UD in 20 years?
  • As the significance of intercultural capabilities and global perspectives continues to grow, what should UD do in the coming 20 years to advance students' global and intercultural learning?
  • How should the learning-and-living environment at UD change in light of the rapidly growing influence of digital educational technologies and the growing potential for of artificial intelligence in higher education?
  • The five Strategic Visioning Working Groups submitted their Fall Term reports in late December. The full reports are now posted, along with a concise overview of the five reports, on the VisionUD Working Group Resources page. We hope you will take the opportunity to review these reports or the summary document and offer comments about the observations and recommendations they present. 

Office of the President

St. Mary's Hall
300 College Park
Dayton, Ohio 45469