Leafs News
Goshen College Athletics Unveils Strategic Plan
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Leafs - Tue, Aug. 8, 2017

GOSHEN, Ind. — The Goshen College athletic department debuted its new strategic plan Tuesday, enumerating six core values to guide its mission as the Maple Leafs build on more than six decades of character-driven intercollegiate competition.

The six athletic core values—academic achievement, athletic excellence, service, sportsmanship, student development and faith—highlight the athletic program's ability to offer its participants opportunities to capitalize on their God-given talents, abilities and passions. The department provides intentional instruction and opportunity in the integration of faith and sport through spiritual, character and leadership development. This focus offers every student a life-orienting story rooted in Goshen's focus on international, intercultural, interdisciplinary and integrative teaching and learning.

Click HERE to view the Goshen College athletic department's strategic plan.

As a highly visible and marketable entity on the GC campus, athletics plays a significant role in promoting and advancing the mission of Goshen College—to develop informed, articulate, sensitive, responsible Christians. Through intentional instruction and modeling of the core values set out by the college, this strategic plan, and the NAIA's Champions of Character initiative, Maple Leaf student-athletes will be developed holistically and leave Goshen ready to be a positive influence in their families, workplaces and communities.

In 1 Corinthians 12, the apostle Paul observes that "just as a body, though one, has many parts, but its parts form one body, so it is with Christ." This sentiment, perhaps best known on campus through the #OneLeaf motto introduced in 2014, continues to guide the department in the strategic plan.

#OneLeaf serves as a reminder that in athletics, like in the body, each group (including student-athletes, coaches, professors, family, friends, teammates, fans and staff) play important roles. One part of the body cannot be successful without the others. Similarly, one part of our program or one of our teams cannot sustain success without each part playing its roles well.

"Intercollegiate athletics is an important aspect of the Goshen College experience as it provides opportunities for student athletes to pursue their passion for sport while achieving their educational dreams," said Dr. Ken Newbold, provost and interim president. "The strategic plan developed by the athletic department clearly articulates the values and goals for the department which are well aligned with the institution's mission and vision. I commend the athletic department administration and coaches for their hard work in developing a comprehensive plan that focuses on student development and emphasizes the five core values of Goshen College."

"Our team has worked extremely hard at being intentional about every aspect of our work and we are passionate about better serving our student-athletes of the past, present, and future," said athletic director Josh Gleason. "This strategic plan, which will be a living document that is updated as we go, is a vital guide to our collaborative work. Together, we are thrilled to have the opportunity to make a positive impact on student-athletes who will go out into the world to have that same positive effect on others."

The strategic plan is the result of more than two years of work with the Goshen College athletic staff with input from other areas of campus. It was developed to intentionally underscore the areas of focus required to be successful in doing the important work of developing student-athletes with excellence.

The Maple Leafs' namesake, the maple tree, has one of the densest root systems in the world. By relying on enrichment from that root system, a single tree can disperse more than 100,000 seeds at a time. It is a perfect analogy for our Maple Leaf student-athletes. They rely on the enrichment of a dense support system including coaches, professors, teammates, family and fans. When supported well, the impact on the world around them can be nearly limitless.

Goshen College is an affordable, nationally-ranked Christian liberal arts college in Northern Indiana known for leadership in intercultural and international education, sustainability and social justice.

The Maple Leafs compete in 13 varsity sports in the NAIA's highly competitive Crossroads League, continuing a tradition of intercollegiate athletics that dates to 1956 and included women's competition nearly a decade before Title IX. Preseason practice for the 2017-18 year is underway with the first scrimmage set for Friday. The women's volleyball team plays the first regular-season match at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 16, hosting Marygrove College.

For more information on GC athletics, visit www.GoLeafs.net and follow the Maple Leafs on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram at @GCMapleLeafs.