When Prof. Andrew Petter became President of Simon Fraser University, he set out on an ambitious public consultation campaign to help guide the direction of the university.
Called “envision>SFU”, the exercise asked tough questions of stakeholders and community leaders, such as “what is distinctive about SFU” and “how can SFU increase its impact and relevance”. The feedback became the basis of the envision>SFU whitepaper and the institution’s direction for the coming five years.
Pace Group worked closely with the President’s office to organize inout sessions, facilitate media relations, publicity and public outreach.
Pace Group ensured the envision>SFU campaign was high profile, visible and connected with the university’s most valuable stakeholders. Groups engaged included the Mayors and Councils of SFU’s neighbouring communities, business associations, Aboriginal and multicultural communities as well as the university’s own internal departments.
Initiatives ranged from a high profile media launch, print, bus and radio ads, presentations to The Vancouver Board of Trade and the Business Council of British Columbia, plus focus groups, meetings with five municipalities and even visits where the President was invited into student’s homes for coffee and conversation.
Through five high profile months of outreach and consultation in 2011, President Petter was routinely congratulated for his unorthodox, yet refreshingly welcome, outgoing approach to strategic visioning for the future of Simon Fraser University.