Strategic planning is a useful tool for the Elmira College Center for Mark Twain Studies (CMTS) to assess its past and design its future. Strategic management helps CMTS cultivate a continuing commitment to its mission and vision, promotes a culture that includes meaningful input from all stakeholders and encourages a focus on the annual agenda by means of a transparent decision-making process. The annual strategic plan allows the staff of CMTS to identify and respond to its most fundamental and immediate issues, and develop strategies for fostering fiscally sustainable growth in moving CMTS toward being a leading internationally recognized academic center. Finally, the CMTS strategic planning process fosters proactive discussion and formulation of action plans by all staff members, both within their spheres of influence and within the organization as a whole.
CMTS continues to strive for transparency in all its endeavors and is more than willing to make its strategic plan available to the public.
Vision Statement of the Center for Mark Twain Studies
The Center for Mark Twain Studies strives to renew and deepen its identity as a scholarly center for Mark Twain Studies and any and all related academic disciplines with the goal of becoming one of the best academic centers in the country.
To achieve this vision, the Center for Mark Twain Studies must harness its great energy and talents, inspire its supporters, and most importantly, exercise the collective imaginations of the greater Mark Twain community to build and maintain an even better Center for Mark Twain Studies for its current constituents and future generations.
Mission Statement of the Center for Mark Twain Studies
The Elmira College Center for Mark Twain Studies (CMTS) is dedicated to fostering and supporting scholarship and pedagogy related to all aspects of Mark Twain. The primary purpose of CMTS is to serve an international community of scholars and educators. The responsibilities of CMTS also include oversight and preservation of two historic landmarks: Quarry Farm, which has been designated a cultural humanities site dedicated to scholars and writers working in Mark Twain Studies, and the Mark Twain Study, now located on the Elmira College campus. Starting in 1871 and for over twenty consecutive summers, Twain lived at Quarry Farm and worked in his octagonal Study. It was here that the author wrote The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court, and many other important works, signifying his most productive and successfully creative time of his life.
In addition, CMTS closely collaborates with the Elmira College Mark Twain Archive, the home of primary and secondary sources dedicated to Twain and his circle. CMTS also seeks to enrich local and regional community members and organizations by promoting and preserving the legacy of Twain and his deep connection to Elmira. CMTS fulfills its mission through the sponsorship of academic and creative research fellowships-in-residence; the creation of content for MarkTwainStudies.org, the website of CMTS; and through the facilitation of a number of scholarly events, including annual symposia, academic lectures, teaching institutes, and the quadrennial International Conference on the State of Mark Twain Studies, the world’s largest scholarly conference focusing on Mark Twain.
Reflecting its vision and mission statement, the Center for Mark Twain Studies has established the following strategic goals:
- Enhance and sustain service to all constituents of CMTS
- Scholarly community
- Internet community
- Local and regional community
- Elmira College community
- Increase the quality and quantity of scholarly production associated with Quarry Farm
- Enhance and sustain the services and materials offered by the Mark Twain Archive to the academic community
- Preserve the historical infrastructure of Quarry Farm, the Study, the Exhibit, and the Archives
- Increase financial sustainability to support CMTS’ mission and strategic goals