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Strategic Plan 2016 - 2020

Vice Chancellor's Message

Southern Cross University's Strategic Plan 2016 - 2020 sets out an ambitious plan for the transformation and growth of our unique University. The challenge is to build on our values and achievements, while keeping sight of the authentic SCU experience and our institutional ethos in a time of change.

We value being the University of choice for students across our regional footprint. We are proud to lead the sector in welcoming priority groups, including Indigenous students, those who are the first in their family to attend university, and those from less advantaged backgrounds.

Our aim is to give all students, however they are studying and wherever they are living, an engaged, high quality academic experience backed up by a proactive service culture and a personal touch.

Our graduates will be living and working in a world of unparalleled change, working in jobs and professions they'd never envisaged, surrounded by technology that doesn't currently exist. We need to help instil in our students the discipline content and personal qualities needed to confidently deal with these future challenges in a socially articulate way. SCU graduates will be 'work ready', 'world ready' and 'digitally literate'.

We value our achievements in research excellence. Yet we cannot rest on our laurels: it's imperative our research culture is more responsive to external drivers and we must focus on building the capacity of our researchers so they can reach their full potential. We will increase engagement with our partners to assist Australian enterprises to innovate and our communities to prosper.

We need to look out, not in. We champion our place in regional Australia, celebrate our distinctive campuses and what they offer to our diverse communities. It's vital we grow our national and global connections, partnering with people and organisations that add strategic value to our activities.

In a changing world with rising expectations and cost pressures, SCU must transform the way services are provided: we need to be more agile, responsive and open to new ways of working. Sometimes difficult decisions will be needed to secure the longer term success of the University.

The foundation for our achievements is our staff. Our staff matter - our success in a very competitive future depends on the continued commitment and contribution of all staff to supporting our students and pursuing our learning and research mission.

We are aiming high for 2020, as we transform into a truly sustainable University equipped to succeed in an ever-changing world.


Southern Cross University will be recognised for enriching our communities through the excellence of our scholarship and the achievements of our graduates.


We equip our students to live a life they value and to be effective global citizens. We do this by creating inspirational and engaged learning experiences.

We create and apply knowledge in partnership with our communities in fields that are regionally relevant and globally significant.



We demonstrate collegiality through:

Openness and Respect

  • Being open with each other and open in our thinking
  • Saying what we believe and doing it in a constructive and respectful manner
  • Engaging with diverse cultural and Indigenous perspectives in both global and local settings.

Collaboration and Trust

  • Working as a team, drawing on combined strengths to meet our shared goals
  • Trusting our colleagues to challenge us in a positive manner, and supporting each other
  • Engaging with our local and global communities and partners for mutual benefit.


We demonstrate integrity through:

Honesty and Ethical Behaviour

  • Being truthful in all our dealings
  • Acting consistently with what is said and the principles held
  • Pursuing practices that develop the social, economic, cultural and environmental sustainability of our University, and local and global communities
  • Advancing human rights and our commitment to providing opportunities for students and staff in an inclusive, culturally safe environment.

Drive and Accountability

  • Striving to ensure the University's ongoing success
  • Having the drive and commitment to innovate based on rigorous analysis
  • Being accountable for our individual and collective actions and for the performance of those we lead.


  • Goal one: We will equip our students for diverse futures and global careers that enrich society.
  • Goal two: We will strategically grow our research profile, building a sustainable culture of research excellence.
  • Goal three: We will pursue targeted growth to ensure a sustainable future.
  • Goal four: We will create distinctive opportunities for engaged learning and research, as a hallmark of the SCU experience.
  • Goal five: We will transform our service delivery, building a culture among our professional and academic staff of providing the highest level of flexible support.

Read more details about the Strategic Plan 2016 - 2020 goals.