OneWSU system FAQs

Dear Faculty and Staff:

We sincerely appreciate your feedback regarding the evolution of the OneWSU system. In response to your comments, we are in the process of establishing a website to serve as a repository for initiative resources such as background information, guiding principles, frequently asked questions, and the anticipated timeline. In the meantime, please review answers to the most commonly asked questions.

As we move forward in our system’s development, we will do so in a way that engages all members of the WSU system and allows for an iterative process. We will continue to monitor your feedback carefully and will post responses and updates in the FAQ section. As a representative example, we have recently received a lot of questions regarding the faculty affairs and unit structures described in the second white paper. Below please find an answer to this particular concern, which will also be posted in the FAQs.

Q: What does it mean that faculty will no longer be a part of the same department across the system?

A: This was mentioned as a possibility in the second white paper. We’ve received some strong concerns about this particular scenario, and, thus, for now we’d like to take that off the table. We do not wish to undermine collaborative efforts that are currently working well. At the same time, it will be critical for campuses to have the ability to introduce unique programs. The goal of the OneWSU system development is to provide greater clarity for roles and responsibilities, and greater autonomy to campus locations in ways that are helpful to the system as a whole. We look to empower and grow existing relationships to enhance WSU’s mission, quality, and impact.

Last week, we asked our chancellors, deans, and vice presidents to participate in an exercise that will help guide the next phase of the OneWSU system. Each leader will submit responses to the questions below by early March:

  • Describe the long-term (3+ years) benefits to your area of responsibility under a more clearly articulated system model.
  • What are the most significant opportunities and challenges with campus-level autonomy over certain activities and functions? From your perspective, which functions would benefit the most from greater campus autonomy?
  • What are the activities and responsibilities that you think would work best for a central system administration to coordinate and/or support for your unit? Why?
  • Any additional challenges or opportunities that you anticipate as we explore this next phase of OneWSU?

We plan to engage the university community in similar exercises later this spring and throughout the fall semester, and all of your engagement and contributions will be critical as we chart the path forward.

Thank you, again, for your continued commitment to and support of WSU. We look forward to working with you on this important initiative and receiving your ongoing feedback.


Kirk Schulz

Elizabeth Chilton
Provost and Executive Vice President