Berklee Today

Lead Sheet: A New Plan

by President Lee Eliot Berk

From the start, Berklee has been identified with fresh approaches. The founding of the school itself was based on the novel idea that professional musicianship could be taught using then-contemporary jazz rather than classical music as the vehicle. And ever since then, our ideas about what should be valued, striven for, and taught to fulfill our mission have kept changing with the demands, needs, and opportunities of the time.

Our Strategic Planning Steering Committee has met for the past two years to identify and manage a process for gathering all of our ideas about what is most important to advance our college in the years 2000-2005. We received a lot of input from alumni through the web site, through presentations at meetings of the New York, Boston, Nashville, and Los Angeles alumni chapters, and from alumni trustees Luis Alvarez '83, John Doelp '79, Pamela Roller '95, and Leanne Summers '88.

I want to thank all of our alumni who contributed ideas to our college's new strategic plan. In particular, I would like to thank Executive Vice President Gary Burton '62 who led the Strategic Planning Steering Committee and its outreach with great sensitivity and with responsiveness to the accumulated experiences and wisdom of the entire community. As well, I thank Associate Vice President for Operations Tom Riley '78, who was instrumental in coordinating and supporting the work of each of the groups.

Our entire community, both inside and outside of Berklee, has contributed to the formation of this new vision and strategic initiatives. We all have a stake in successfully achieving them. Together with you, I look forward to seeing the exciting outcome of this effort in the years 2000-2005 and anticipate that it will enhance the quality of our college and provide greater connectivity between Berklee and our alumni.

Our new strategic plan is presented in this issue of Berklee Today. Importantly, a major focus of our new plan is a healthy two-way relationship with you, our alumni. Our plan is to provide programs to further learning, advance the alumni presence in the music industry, strengthen the alumni network, and support alumni creativity using technology as an important tool for reaching out to our alumni worldwide.