Implementation of Strategic Plan for Research, Scholarship and Creative Activities

Academic Affairs Update: RSCA Strategic Plan

Sent on behalf of Dr. Christine Hendren, Interim Vice Provost of Research and Innovation.


Dear Faculty and Staff, 

Last fall, I shared the Strategic Plan for Research, Scholarship and Creative Activities (RSCA) with all of you. Today, I’m pleased to provide an update on the implementation of that plan, including invitations for campuswide engagement.  


Implementation committee

I am leading a four-person committee that will coordinate implementation of the RSCA Strategic Plan and work closely with departments, offices and individuals charged with executing specific actions. The other committee members are:

  • Grace Marasco-Plummer, Interim Managing Director of App State’s Research Institute for Environment, Energy and Economics (RIEEE); 

  • Karen Fletcher, Director of Grants Resources and Services; and

  • Dr. Gabriele Casale, Faculty Fellow in the Office of Research and Innovation and Professor in the Department of Geological and Environmental Sciences.


Prioritizing action items in the RSCA Strategic Plan

Sixty-three action items were identified during the RSCA strategic planning process. These items are presented in Appendix A of the RSCA Strategic Plan. In coordinating implementation of these action items, the implementation committee will focus on the following five priority areas, which emerged from campus stakeholders and external feedback received during development of the strategic plan:

  • Processes and faculty engagement and support

  • Student support

  • Capacity building

  • Partnerships

  • Communication

Each priority area features specific actions that will be completed during the four-year implementation. You can access details of the implementation — including the list of specific actions organized by priority area and the timeline for those actions — on the RSCA Implementation webpage.


Opportunities to engage in the implementation plan

In the near-term, the implementation committee invites the campus community to help identify App State’s existing, emerging and potential areas of excellence in research, scholarship and creative activities. Interested colleagues can share their ideas for these areas of excellence via an online submission process. This opportunity will be available through May 2, 2024, as we encourage faculty and staff to take the necessary time to discuss potential areas of excellence within their departments and units before finalizing their recommendations. 

The campus community has additional ongoing opportunities to engage in the implementation of the RSCA Strategic Plan.

  • The implementation committee will give campus presentations on Feb. 7 and 8 that will allow faculty and staff to ask questions about the implementation and provide feedback. Learn more about these presentations and register to participate.

  • I will also visit academic department and unit meetings to discuss the RSCA Strategic Plan implementation and solicit input. Department chairs or unit leaders can complete this form to invite me to attend one of your upcoming meetings.

  • A successful implementation of the RSCA Strategic Plan relies on the diverse perspectives of the campus community. Ongoing dialogue will help improve the implementation process and broaden participation. You can engage with and provide feedback on the RSCA implementation at any time.

  • Updates will be available on the RSCA Implementation webpage.

  • Updates and opportunities to engage will be shared via Appalachian Announcements and the Research Google group


The implementation committee members look forward to collaborating with the campus community as we start to bring the RSCA Strategic Plan to life — your active participation will be key to our collective success!



Christine Ogilvie Hendren, Ph.D.
Interim Vice Provost of Research and Innovation

Published: Jan 30, 2024 12:19pm