| Executive Summary
Like the OSU administration
and many other units of the university, the Hatfield Marine
Science Center has been engaged in developing a strategic
plan to envision its future. This document reflects
the contributions of a diverse group of stakeholders, representing
various academic and research interests on OSU’s main
campus, HMSC’s partner research agencies, and communities
The Hatfield Marine Science Center
(HMSC) enters its 5th decade with a strong vision for the future,
as Oregon State University’s campus for research, education
and outreach in marine and coastal sciences. Complementing
and reinforcing OSU’s commitment to serve the people
of Oregon as one of America’s Top 10 Land-Grant universities,
the HMSC aspires to become one of the nation’s leading
marine laboratories, known internationally for advancing knowledge
through interdisciplinary and collaborative research partnerships
among academia, government agencies, industries, and communities.
Members of the HMSC work by a strongly
shared set of beliefs. We value stewardship of the marine
environment, research excellence, collaborative partnerships,
effective communication and engagement, and making a positive
impact on the community. These are our core values, which serve
as continuing guideposts for our research, teaching, community
outreach and involvement.
HMSC is the essential coastal link
needed to achieve the goals of Oregon State University’s
strategic plan and its commitment to serve the people of Oregon
and beyond, through research and education programs that address
issues of high economic, scientific, and aesthetic value in
marine and coastal systems. HMSC will focus on three
key themes in the OSU Strategic Plan – Advancing the
arts and sciences, Understanding the earth and its resources,
and Managing natural resources – with linkages to OSU’s
nationally and internationally recognized research, teaching,
and outreach programs in the marine sciences, oceanography,
engineering, forestry, and science.
||The combination of location, physical setting,
and multi-agency presence at HMSC creates a unique scientific
and learning environment that will help position OSU for new
national initiatives and priorities in marine and coastal science. The
breadth and depth of expertise in basic and applied sciences
at HMSC create a place where vital research and contributions
to the preservation and management of the global marine environment
can take place. Intertwined with these strengths and assets are
challenges which this plan addresses.
The unique missions, mandates,
political forces, and funding requirements of each agency and
OSU program at HMSC make long-term joint planning challenging. There
are also educational and administrative hurdles that are the
result, in part, of HMSC’s distance from the Corvallis
campus. And like all OSU programs, funding issues impact
the ability to offer programs, to maintain and upgrade facilities,
to obtain the latest technology, and to serve all the communities
of interest that have a stake in HMSC’s activities. Echoing
these challenges, the following strategic issues have
emerged, highlighting both the needs and untapped potential
of HMSC as a key resource and asset:
- Preparing for National Initiatives in Marine
and Coastal Science. Our nation is
developing a new ocean agenda based on an influential report
from the U.S. Commission on Ocean Policy, released in 2004. HMSC
can be a key contributor to the critical actions proposed,
but will require improved, state-of-the-art facilities. Together
with the other coastal and marine programs of OSU, HMSC
can help position Oregon to be a leader in responding to
national ocean priorities.
- Education. Educational programs
at HMSC serve diverse populations and needs, but current programs
fail to realize opportunities. This plan identifies new
and compelling hands-on programs that will make OSU graduates
more competitive, contribute to national workforce needs, and
increase scientific literacy for youth and lifelong learners.
- Identity and Visibility. Capitalizing
on its signature strengths, HMSC must better define its identity
and enhance its visibility, both within OSU and to external
audiences. Higher visibility translates into increased funding
opportunities in response to new national mandates and initiatives.
- Partnerships in Marine and Coastal Science. The
collaboration of state and federal agencies, academic scientists,
and maritime industries represents a defining characteristic
of the HMSC and strengthens the ability of each to recognize
and participate in new ocean initiatives.
Moving beyond the recognized strengths,
assets, and challenges, a set of primary goals, strategies
and actions are identified in this plan as key to achieving
the HMSC vision. Broadly defined, these goals address
four fundamental priority areas:1)
Educational Opportunities; 2) Research Excellence; 3) Partnerships
and Infrastructure; and 4) Community Relationships and Interactions. The
goals, with their supporting strategies, follow:
||Goal 1. Create and expand
opportunities for outstanding and compelling educational programs
and a superior learning environment in marine and coastal science
and resource management.
- Develop opportunities for undergraduate courses at HMSC that
enrich existing programs.
- Increase opportunities for graduate studies at HMSC.
- Develop leading national and international programs in informal
education and extension-based outreach in coastal and marine
- Create programs of continuing professional education for
scientists, managers, practitioners, and educators.
Goal 2. Create and
promote excellence in research and scholarship in coastal
and marine sciences.
- Launch and guide innovative multi-disciplinary marine and
coastal science research projects.
- Increase synergy and research cooperation among OSU, HMSC,
partner agencies and industry partners.
- Identify and promote the visibility of signature strengths
of HMSC research.
||Goal 3. Improve partnerships
and facilities to enhance cooperation and success of OSU, partner
agencies, and other stakeholders.
- Develop effective multi-agency agreements and cooperation
and attract additional marine and coastal agencies.
- Maintain and enhance resources, facilities and tools to support
research, teaching, and outreach
- Foster an intellectual and professional climate that is collegial
and supportive of missions, people, and diversity of partner
Goal 4. Develop HMSC
- community partnerships for integrated and collaborative
marine resource science, management, education and research.
- Promote understanding of utilization and sustainability of
- Engage community leaders as educators in professional development
- Involve community, industry, and NGOs in development of research
directions and activities
- Develop and maintain political, economic and social support
for HMSC mission
|This plan will require
actions by the OSU administration to enable HMSC to achieve the
ambitious goals outlined herein. With new ocean initiatives
at the national level, the outcomes anticipated from the plan
will lead to new funding opportunities and accomplishments, including
research results that inform public policy and have significant
Signature educational and research
programs will follow the needs and missions of OSU and the
agencies that comprise the HMSC. Fulfillment of this plan will elevate
the visibility and reach of OSU’s marine and coastal
programs while addressing national priorities for ocean and
coastal management needs.
HMSC Strategic Plan (in PDF format)