Dean Caroline Freund reflects on her time so far at GPS and outlines how the community is shaping the school’s new strategic plan
By Caroline Freund | GPS Dean
Since joining the UC San Diego School of Global Policy and Strategy (GPS) in July 2021, it has become clear that GPS provides an innovative and rigorous approach to policy. With a broad range of scholastic disciplines and expertise, a community of discovery-driven thinkers and our West Coast location, we are uniquely positioned to be the place that creates global policy solutions for a better tomorrow.
At this stage, it is time to take action and focus on our aspirational goal to be the globally recognized school of policy-relevant scholarship that trains the next generation of leaders. With this in mind, I have collaborated with members of the community to create a strategic plan that will focus on four main areas:
- Focusing and Differentiating our Academic Product
- Enriching the Student Engagement Experience
- Enhancing the GPS Reputation
- Optimizing and Growing Capacity and Capabilities to Support the Plan
I want to ensure, as we evolve through the 21st century, that GPS stays focused on the future and that we highlight our interdisciplinary approach as a competitive advantage to not only prospective students but our entire community.
Our location alone — a beautiful city on the Pacific and the border of Mexico — makes us uniquely positioned to work on increasingly important issues in Asia and Latin America with intensity and focus. When you pair our school with UC San Diego, which is annually recognized for its academic excellence, collaborative exchange and inspired purpose, GPS is poised to be at the forefront of 21st century policy and innovation.
My goals for the school moving forward are to continue to attract incredible scholars and students from all across the globe to create solutions to the world’s most critical challenges that can only be envisioned from here; to maintain our dominance in the areas of climate policy, democracy and Pacific regional expertise, such as China; and to build our reputation and grow our programs related to STEM, globalization, security, and regional expertise in Mexico and India.
We are already well on our way to many of those goals, with the launch of our new 21st Century India Center and the flourishing of our existing research centers, and I feel confident that we will continue to grow in those areas of primary importance.
Ultimately, GPS is, and will always remain on the front line of critical issues — and I look forward to empowering and working alongside this incredible community to take ownership of the progress we want to see.
Caroline Freund is the dean of the UC San Diego School of Global Policy and Strategy.