MCC Begins Development of 2017-2022 Strategic Plan

As Muskegon Community College’s current strategic plan comes to a conclusion, the college has begun preparations for the development of its 2017-2022 Strategic Plan.

“Our continued success will be predicated on a focused strategy, one that requires input from all segments of our campus and community, so that we can continue to effectively address and meet the needs of both of those constituencies,” explained MCC President Dale Nesbary.

Founded in 1926 as Muskegon’s first college, MCC currently offers its more than 7,000 students opportunities in 52 associate degree and 38 certificate programs at its locations in Muskegon, Ottawa and Newaygo counties.  The institution is fully accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

“As a leader in higher education for 90 years, we take pride in our positive impact on all the communities we serve,” said Nesbary.  “Nearly 100 community members were invited to join one of the committees and share their insights.”

The strategic planning efforts will be led by a 15-member steering committee (see list below), plus six other committees that will respectively focus on the following assigned topics:

  • Academic Needs Assessment
  • Community Engagement and Impact
  • Facilities
  • Health and Safety
  • Organizational Support
  • Student Success

Committee members include representatives from local schools districts, business and industry, higher education partners, local and state government, and various community organizations.  In addition, about 140 students, faculty, staff, and retirees were invited to participate.

The work begins in September 2016 with each committee meeting at least once per month.  In addition to input from committee members, the college will hold a series of town hall meetings and focus groups to gather feedback regarding community and student needs.

“The plan must be an authentic product of the community, for the community,” commented Tina Dee, MCC’s Director of Strategic Initiatives.

To help support brand management and marketing efforts, the Community Engagement and Impact Committee will coordinate community perceptions research.  Nesbary explained that research results will be shared with all committees, who will use the data to set institutional goals and develop measurable objectives to help advance MCC’s mission.

In addition, the planning process will incorporate recent data gathered through MCC’s ongoing research projects, including the Community College Survey of Student Engagement, conducted by the Center for Community College Student Engagement and the Student Satisfaction Inventory by Ruffalo Noel Levitz.

The 2017-2022 plan will build upon past successes and lessons learned.  A progress report on the current 2010-2016 plan is available on the college’s website at

While most committees will conclude their work in July 2017, the steering committee is to remain in place permanently, to monitor the plan, adjust it as needed, and to report progress. The plan will be developed September 2016 through June 2017 and will commence on July 1, 2017.

“True integrated strategic planning should be an enduring part of our culture, not just a limited project,” said Nesbary.

All seven of MCC strategic planning committees are benefiting from the expertise of consultant Dr. Nicholas R. Santilli, who has decades of strategic and master planning experience. He is the associate provost for assessment and institutional effectiveness at John Carroll University and chairs the board of directors for the Society for College and University Planning, the leading professional association dedicated to integrated planning for higher education.

“All sectors of higher education face a similar set of challenges that fall into one of three categories: cost, compliance, and relevance,” explained Santilli. “Institutions of higher learning are asked to provide a high quality education at low cost, face considerable regulatory pressures from Federal, State, and local entities, all the while providing a current, relevant experience for our students.”

“The road to meet these daunting tasks is via integrated planning. This approach brings the community together to discuss what matters most to MCC.  From these discussions, MCC will be poised to integrate the resources and infrastructure necessary to realize their academic mission and vision.”

Strategic planning updates will be available on the Muskegon Community College website at with occasional posts on the college’s Facebook page for alumni and supporters at

For information, contact Tina Dee, MCC Director of Strategic Initiatives, at (231) 777-0660 or at

MCC Strategic Planning Steering Committee
  • Dr. Dale K. Nesbary, Strategic Planning Chair
    President of Muskegon Community College
  • Kristine Anderson, Chair of Organizational Support Committee
    Director of Human Resources (MCC)
  • Eduardo Bedoya, At Large
    Director of Institutional Research (MCC)
  • Dr. Ed Breitenbach, Chair of Needs Assessment Committee
    Dean of Instruction & Assessment (MCC)
  • Megan Byard, College Access Network representative
    College Access Specialist, Muskegon Opportunity
  • Kelley Conrad, Achieving the Dream representative
    Faculty, Counseling Coordinator (MCC)
  • Tina Dee, Strategic Planning Administrator
    Director of Strategic Initiatives (MCC)
  • Tonia Lans, Chair of Community Engagement and Impact Committee
    Faculty (MCC)
  • Marty McDermott, Chair of Health and Safety Committee
    Athletic Director (MCC)
  • J.B. Meeuwenberg, Chair of Student Success Committee
    Faculty (MCC)
  • Steve Olsen, Business/Industry representative
    General Manager, Northern Machine Tool
  • Dr. John L. Selmon, Chair of Facilities Committee
    Vice President for Student Services and Administration
  • Teresa Sturrus, At Large
    Vice President for Academic Affairs and Finance
  • Robert Szymoniak, K-12 School Districts representative
    Superintendent, Fruitport Community Schools
  • Christopher VanOosterhout, Faculty Association Representative
    Faculty (MCC)