Pitt Athletics unveils strategic plan for long-term growth

Pitt athletic director Scott Barnes will oversee the athletic department restructering plan. Jeff Ahearn | Senior Staff Photographer

Pitt athletics unveiled a detailed strategic plan for the next three-to-five years in a letter from Athletic Director Scott Barnes on Thursday.

“[The plan] is the product of thorough assessment, detailed analysis and dynamic collaboration between the University community and our own coaches, staff and student-athletes,” Barnes wrote. “Our plan is intended to guide us through the next three years with some objectives reaching out as far as 2020-21.”

The long-term plan features six strategic goals, listed as follows:

  • Compete at a level of athletic excellence measured by championships, ACC finishes, national rankings and the Director’s cup while maintaining program integrity.
  • Recruit, develop and retain the best student athletes, coaches and staff that embody the University’s commitment to diversity and inclusion while supporting their continued growth and success.
  • Educate, retain and graduate our student-athletes with an emphasis on achieving academic excellence at a rate that compares favorably within the ACC and nationwide.
  • Strengthen our resource-base in order to facilitate championship level success across the athletic department.
  • Prioritize and allocate our resources with a focus on the growth and success of our athletic programs and infrastructure.
  • Unify our Pitt alumni and friends worldwide and inspire pride through enhanced collaboration, communication and engagement.

The plan also includes specific objectives for the implementation of all six strategic goals.

Barnes’ first goal involves finishing in the top half of all conference standings and qualifying teams and individuals for NCAA postseason while providing optimal sports performance services for all student-athletes to train and compete at the highest level.

Objectives for his second goal include attracting and recruiting exceptional student-athletes with high character and a commitment to excellence and hard work, and enhancing the current environment to maximize student-athlete development and success holistically.

Goal three focuses on assessing/evaluating/encouraging the recruitment of prospective student athletes who will succeed at a high level academically, as well as athletically, at the University.

Strategic goal four includes specific objectives for growing Pitt Athletics’ donor base by raising fundraising revenue, ticket sales revenue, licensing and merchandising revenue, sponsorship revenue and game day revenue.

The fifth goal includes objectives to refine the existing budget process, improve facilities and operations, establish a culture that embraces the use of innovative technology and develop a process by which policies and procedures are documented, maintained, communicated and updated to ensure consistency and transparency throughout the organization.

Finally, goal six focuses on establishing an unwavering commitment to unifying the Pitt brand in an attempt to grow regional and national media coverage of all individual athletics programs, which started by re-establishing the “Pitt Script” logo as Pitt Athletics’ primary mark.

Each strategic goal will receive oversight from its own sub-committee, with two co-chairs in charge and assistance from student-athletes, faculty and athletic department staff.

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