University of New Mexico President Garnett S. Stokes values community feedback, and is asking the campus community to give their thoughts on UNM 2040: Opportunity Defined, the University’s strategic plan.

The deadline was recently extended, and Lobos now have until Feb.18 to share their ideas about how to be successful in the upcoming years, or build up the ideas of others.

“The goal is to really try and offer a number of different avenues for engagement,” said UNM Chief Marketing and Communications Officer Cinnamon Blair, speaking after an online community meeting held Thursday to raise awareness of the process. “So far, I think everybody’s been really articulate, passionate, and reasonable. It’s nice to see the ideas and support that people have for each other in the community.”

UNM 2040: Opportunity Defined is a 20-year aspirational vision for the University. The plan provides UNM with tasks and objectives to achieve specific community-oriented goals. The 6-phase planning process began in April 2021 and is ending this month. As the process comes to a close, students are encouraged to voice their thoughts and opinions.

“I’ve been incredibly encouraged by the feedback, suggestions, and ideas we’ve seen from you so far,” President Stokes said in a recent President's Weekly Perspective letter to the UNM community. 

UNM is making sharing ideas easy through IdeaScale; an online innovation platform. Here, those with UNM net IDs can log on and submit ideas, coment on ideas, upload files, utilize tags, upvote comments, give kudos and more. This technology is used as an additional and iterative form of valuable feedback from the Lobo community. 

The platform is organized by various campaigns – in this case, one for each goal plus a “What’s the BIG idea?” campaign – which prompt the user to respond to a campaign challenge. After the allotted time period passes, the University will take these ideas into consideration as objectives and tasks are refined and advanced.

“I’m a huge advocate for it,” Blair said. “Anybody can share their ideas to make UNM a better place. Nobody should be embarrassed to do it, nobody should feel like their voice isn’t heard.”

The next step in the process is the implementation of various ideas into a UNM 2040 plan. The plan will reflect the true aspirations of the UNM community, gathered throughout the process.