outdoors header

CNCC Strategic Plan

Mission & Vision


Our Mission

The mission of Colorado Northwestern Community College is to enhance people’s lives by providing an accessible, affordable, quality education.

Our Vision

Colorado Northwestern Community College will be the college of choice for students seeking a unique education grounded in the Colorado experience.

Value Statement & Core Values

Innovative teaching, outreach education, and continual assessment will ensure that our students have the skills to further their education, succeed at meaningful careers, and prosper in a complex and increasingly diverse world.

  • Achievement:  Provide holistic and broadly-based student support to prepare our students to achieve their educational, professional, and personal goals.
  • Life-long Learning:  Offer educational programs that encourage continued education as well as respond to evolving workforce environments.
  • Diversity: Value and promote diversity.
  • Innovation:  Utilize innovation to provide unique learning, leadership, and recreational experiences in the diverse natural environments of Northwest Colorado.
  • Community Involvement & Development:  Create and nurture meaningful and mutually beneficial partnerships with the Northwest Colorado community and beyond.


2017-2022 Strategic Goals


Focus on the Student

Support students’ needs and expectations to align recruitment, retention, instruction, and student life accordingly.

Objectives and KPI’s

  1. Focus on the student as the primary stakeholder
    • Increase number of certificates and degrees awarded by 1% each academic year beginning spring 2019.
    • Exceed the national fall to fall retention rate for first time, full time and first time, part time students.
    • Increase the transfer rate by 2% each year for the next 5 years.
  2. Teach students how to learn
    • Increase percentage of students who successfully complete credit courses in English and math after completing a remedial course by 5% each academic year
    • Increase the number of students who successfully complete remedial classes and transition into college-level courses earn a C or better by 5% each academic year.
    • 80% of student responses based on course satisfaction survey will report satisfaction with courses each semester. 2018/2019 will be a baseline year to create the survey and train faculty on how to administer the survey.
  3. Improve the student environment to increase enrollment and retention
    • Reach the national community college average (64%) of student satisfaction on the SSI administered each spring.
    • Maintain a course retention rate of 95% (the number of students who are retained from census day to final exam).
    • Align program offerings with community and workforce needs by adding 5 new programs (credit or not-credit \ degreed or non-degreed) and evaluating existing programs for continued need over the next 5 years.
  4. Develop connections and nurture relationships with students
    • Increase the number of student engagement activities offered by 8% each semester.
    • Increase the diversity of the student population by 5% by 2023.
    • Close the success gap between underrepresented students and other students.
  5. Engage students in a diverse and vibrant college experience to encourage holistic growth
    • Increase student attendance at social and academic programs or events. A baseline will be established 2018/2019 academic year and the % increase will be set for 2019/2020 academic year.



Develop a fluid framework to promote transparent communication to all internal and external stakeholders.

Objectives and KPI’s

  1. Make communication a priority
    • Distribute by email monthly college reports sent to the state each month to CNCC entire.
    • Provide more opportunities for feedback and communication for the students through forums, emails, and person to person.
  2. Develop deliberate protocols for collaborative and transparent communication
    • Communicate to external constituents monthly (through boards, newspaper, meetings).
    • Distribute divisional updates on a continual basis, internally.
    • Increase social media impressions, reach and click-through rates by 8% every year. In year 2018/2019 establish a committee to provide a recommendation to move the college forward with social media to include management of content in compliance with SP3-125f (system president’s procedure).
  3. Develop tools and training to collect, use, and disseminate information for enhanced communication
    • Train 90% of employees on teambuilding in the academic year 2020-2021.
  4. Solicit and utilize feedback from stakeholders
    • Utilize the CNCC and CTE advisory boards each year to help develop strategies to solicit and utilize feedback from stakeholders.


Purposefully develop and nurture partnerships with alumni, communities, businesses, industry, and institutions for mutual benefit.

Objectives and KPI’s

  1. Participate in economic, community, industrial, and infrastructure development
    • Increase faculty and staff involvement in community or government organizations by 6% each year. 2021 establish a baseline for community organizations.
    • Increase industry partnerships by 10% each year. 2019/2020 establish a baseline for industry partnerships.
    • Identify one major community service project to accomplish at each campus each year, completing three projects by 2021.
    • Increase the participation in local economic development committees on each campus by 1.
  2. Consistently maintain and assess partnerships for mutual benefit
    • Increase community programs and events by 5% each year. 2018/2019 establish a baseline for community programs and events.
  3. Foster and enhance relationships with alumni
    • Increase post graduate communication with alumni by 35% by the end of 2020/2021 fiscal year.
  4. Strengthen our relationships and communication with other institutions
    • Create 5 new K-12 or postsecondary educational partners by 2023.
  5. Prioritize customer service
    • Develop customer service training based on the results of the SSI by fall 2019. Determine if additional training is needed based on the employee climate survey completed in 2019-2020.
  6. Promote positive change
    • Increase employee satisfaction as indicated on a climate survey administered bi-annually. 2019/2020 will be the baseline year. Climate survey will be administered in fall 2019.


Colorado Northwestern Community College will prioritize organizational stability through innovative and intentional growth.

Objectives and KPI’s

  1. Consistently make financial decisions based on the most efficient use of resources.
    • Increase institutional reserves by an average of 4% per fiscal year until reserves are sustainably at 35% of college operating expenses (currently at 16.6%).
  2. Provide students with an affordable education and meaningful experience.
    • Calibrate fee levels to other Colorado institutions of higher education, maintaining greater affordability
    • Increase the amount of external scholarships by 20% by 2023 with 2019/2020 being a baseline year.
  3. Strategically budget to maintain and enhance facilities, equipment, and infrastructure.
    • Develop and implement a robust controlled maintenance plan by December 2021.
    • Meet or remain under budget by all of cost centers at fiscal year-end each year.
    • Increase the current unrestricted deferred maintenance budget by 15% each year.
  4. Fostering employee growth
    • 100% of CNCC employees will participate in professional development activities by the end of each year.
    • Increase the faculty and staff usage of professional development funds by 10% each year. In May 2020, Cabinet agreed to put this KPI on hold due to financial circumstances.
  5. Recruit and retain quality employees.
    • Decrease employee turnover by 10% each fiscal year.
    • Decrease the recruiting process time by 25%.

About CNCC

Colorado Northwestern is one college in two Colorado communities. Depending on what you want to study, CNCC has the perfect surroundings and facilities to meet your needs. Founded in 1962 as “Rangely College,” CNCC now serves nearly 1,600 students on two campuses, two service centers and online. Our two campuses are located in Craig and Rangely and are 90 miles apart in the mountains and canyons of Northwestern Colorado.