The 67th meeting of the Senate took place at the Ukrainian Catholic University, where the vision and strategic framework of the UCU Strategy 2030 were approved, along with supporting documents concerning the university’s global activities and employee welfare.
A meeting of the UCU community on the faculties’ vision for the university’s future strategy
At the beginning of the meeting on October 14, 2023, Sophia Opatska, Vice-Rector for Strategic Development, shared a report on implementing the UCU Strategy 2025. Due to the full-scale war and new challenges Ukrainian society and universities face, the Senate decided to curtail the strategy this year and implement a new one that will last up to 2030.
Yaroslav Prytula, Senior Vice-Rector of UCU, during the strategic session of the Rectorate
Olena Vovk at the Senate Strategy Committee meeting in April 2023
“The UCU development strategy up to 2025 was designed and written for peaceful times. After the significant expansion of the university and the opening of new faculties and programs, it was aimed at internal development, meaning to establish inner systems and processes. The management team suggested many detailed projects to make the institution more systematic. I believe the UCU Strategy 2025 was more than sufficiently implemented in 2020-2023. At the same time, some projects were not fully implemented due to rising challenges. Therefore, as senators, we evaluate this stage of the UCU development positively. It is time to move on while considering new external challenges,” Olena Vovk, co-owner of the family companies Enzym Group and Kormotekh LLC, Head of the Strategy Committee in the UCU Senate (Supervisory Board), stated during the meeting.
The new vision of the UCU Strategy 2030 keeps the title “A University That Serves” (and does so even more efficiently!). It outlines the strategic framework of directions in which the university is called to exercise leadership in the next eight years: offering a contemporary Christian proposal to the person of the 21st century, healing the wounds of war, rebuilding and renewing Ukraine, and promoting Ukraine on the international agenda.
According to UCU Rector Taras Dobko, the primary task of the new strategy is to answer the question of how to increase the university’s contribution and influence: “Due to the war and the challenges of the post-war reconstruction of Ukraine, the number of demands and expectations society sets for UCU, the Church, the authorities, and business has grown significantly and will continue doing so. These might exceed the capabilities of such a small university. Therefore, we must seek new efficient tools for better and more efficient service.”
Senate Strategy Committee Meeting, April 21, 2023
Sophia Opatska, Vice-Rector for Strategic Development, says that for ten months, the university’s management team worked on creating a new strategy to understand how UCU can respond to the community’s social and educational demands and requests caused by the war. “We involved several dozen experts in the strategic discussion, talked with the teams of various university departments, researched the impact of the war on human potential in Ukraine, and discussed our role in the need for reconstruction. Therefore, we singled out the areas where the university must exercise leadership for more efficient service to benefit communities and Ukraine. Our goal is to increase the university’s impact through various formats of interaction and learning.”
UCU Rector Taras Dobko and Vice-Rector for Strategic Development Sophia Opatska
The strategic vision of UCU 2030 — becoming a university that, through teaching, research and service:
- offers a contemporary Christian proposal to the person of the 21st century
- shapes new narratives for Ukraine and the world
- forms leaders for the victory, reconstruction and renewal of Ukraine
- works to heal the wounds of war
- creates personal and community relationships and develops a network of communities
- is a leader in the modernisation of higher education
To implement this vision, the university team is launching several strategic projects: “This way, we will translate said visionary plans into the language of changes within the university so that we can address the transformation of UCU as a result of the strategy implementation more explicitly,” adds UCU Rector.
UCU Rector Taras Dobko
The following steps represent a more detailed development of the projects planned for implementation within the visionary strategic directions.
A university that offers a contemporary Christian proposal to the person of the 21st century:
- Family and family values in the post-war transformation / A university that supports and promotes family values — Olesya Kuka, Director of the Institute of Marriage and Family Life at UCU.
- A comprehensive program of cooperation between UCU and the UGCC — Oleh Turiy, Vice-Rector for Strategic Cooperation.
- Covering the theological and ethical dimensions of war in the context of Catholic Social Teaching — Rev. Yuriy Shchurko, Dean of the Theology-Philosophy Faculty of UCU.
- The model of modern evangelisation — Fr. Nazarii Mysiakovskyy, Head of the Dean’s Office of Pastoral Affairs of UCU.
A university that shapes new narratives for Ukraine and the world:
- English-language educational programs in cooperation with foreign partners for the global involvement of UCU — Dmytro Sherengovsky, Deputy Vice-Rector for Academic and International Affairs and Halyna Protsyk, Director of the International Academic Relations Office.
- Ad fontes and translations of textbooks and parts of foreign books about Ukraine into Ukrainian — Rev. Yuriy Shchurko, Andriy Yasinovskyy, Dean of the Faculty of Humanities, Taras Tymo, Head of Projects and Programs of the Theology-Philosophy Faculty of UCU, Uliana Holovach, Associate Professor of the Philology Department.
- UCU Centres in Wrocław and London, Centre in cooperation with the University of Notre Dame — Dmytro Sherengovsky and Halyna Protsyk.
A university that forms leaders for the victory, reconstruction and renewal of Ukraine:
- The quality of programs for students through teachers — Yaroslav Prytula, Senior Vice-Rector of UCU and Deans of Faculties.
- Interdisciplinary research centres and scientific visibility worldwide aimed at improving our programs and attracting students — Yaroslav Prytula.
- Formation of skills, experiences and responsibility of students, teachers and graduates of UCU for the development of communities — Ivanna Mohylyak, Head of the Dean’s Office of Student Life.
- Managerial culture, ethics, skill, analytics and advocacy — Oksana Kulakovska, Director of the Kyiv Centre of UCU and Yaryna Boychuk, CEO of the UCU Business School.
- UCU as an international hub — Dmytro Sherengovsky and Halyna Protsyk.
A university that works to heal the wounds of war:
- Office for veterans and their families — Ostap Machynskyy, Head of the Rector’s Office.
- Medical Centre — Svitlana Kohut, Dean of the Health Sciences Faculty of UCU.
- A large recovery project (physical, psychosocial, and spiritual rehabilitation) — Svitlana Kohut.
A university that creates personal and community relationships and develops a network of communities:
- Talent attraction and retention — Ulyana Kulchytska, Deputy Vice-Rector for Personnel Management.
- UCU as an attractive working environment – Khrystyna Tsar, Head of the Personnel Management Department.
- The network of the UCU’s influence — Oleksii Molchanovskyi, Head of the Innovation Office (Chief Innovation Officer).
A university that is a leader in the modernisation of higher education:
- Reforming programs according to the Liberal Arts model — Yaroslav Prytula.
- School of Professional Education — active development of certificate programs, online courses, and summer semester — Roksoliana Voronovska, Head of UCU-Online, Lyudmyla Tebenko, Head of the Center for Certificate Programs.
- Outreach — disseminating academic (educational and scientific) and managerial practices of UCU — Dmytro Sherengovsky.
It is worth mentioning that as early as May 2022, the team reviewed the relevance of the current “UCU Strategy 2025” in the context of the full-scale war and the future reconstruction of Ukraine. Therefore, it was decided to launch the strategic planning process and update the university’s development plans.