Cummings 2020 Strategic Plan

Cummings 2020 Strategic Plan

Cummings 2020 Strategic Plan


Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University educates veterinary and graduate students who advance health and wellness for all species with compassion, curiosity and commitment to evidence-based medicine. Our healing, learning, research, and active citizenship enable animals and humans worldwide to live healthier lives.


Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine improves and promotes the health and well-being of animals, people, and ecosystems we share.


Cummings 2020 encompasses experiences and viewpoints of Cummings School’s community. Our plan aligns with Tufts T10 Strategic Plan, and will energize Cummings School’s students, faculty, and staff to fulfill its mission.

Executive Summary

Prioritizing People
Healing Animals
Helping Humans
Engaging Scholars
Transforming Global Health
Prioritizing People

Prioritizing People


We commit to a culture of learning and growing, discovery and leadership, and to the creation of an inclusive, diverse community whose members derive satisfaction from contributing to our common mission.

  • Develop students, faculty, and staff as advocates for our shared mission, vision, and culture of caring.
  • Recruit, develop, retain, and reward faculty and staff who demonstrate excellence in teaching, research, and clinical service and are committed to continuous learning.
  • Create clear expectations for, and recognition of, open and effective communication, professionalism, and active listening.
  • Develop specific strategies to recruit, develop, and support students, faculty, and staff from different ethnic, economic, and geographic life experiences who value diversity and inclusion.
  • Prioritize well-being and promote practices that lead to personal and community satisfaction and success.
  • Engage in environmental sustainability efforts that conserve resources and/or improve the quality of work life.
Healing Animals

Healing Animals


Our seven hospitals and clinics are dedicated to comprehensive care for small companion animals, horses, food animals, zoological companion animals, and wildlife. As the only academic veterinary medical center in New England, we combine compassionate care for animals and their families with clinical learning and research that promote health for animals and people.

  • Enhance clinical services by building effective communication skills in faculty, staff, and students.
  • Develop mechanisms for data-driven enhancement of clinical service and metrics to assess clinical outcomes, educational experiences, faculty and staff satisfaction, and financial sustainability.
  • Further integrate teaching, research, and service missions into an effective veterinary medical center model.
  • Enhance the clinical trials program, highlighting its importance to our mission.
Helping Humans

Helping Humans


Significant research discoveries impact society and attract high-caliber students, faculty, and staff. In developing our research agenda, we strive to advance animal, human, and ecosystem health within a financially sustainable model.

  • Facilitate development of sustainable research programs.
  • Recognize current research programs and initiate new programs with collaborations across Tufts campuses, and with other universities and life sciences partners.
  • Maintain and improve research training programs and facilitate cross-talk between the graduate, professional, and post-graduate clinical training programs.
  • Maintain and improve research infrastructure and services.
Engaging Scholars

Engaging Scholars


Faculty members strive to increase knowledge and advance curricula within our evolving profession. Curricula that are responsive to assessment and evidence ensure that students and faculty are engaged, motivated, continuous learners.

  • Encourage student success by actively reviewing and addressing student priorities, including curricula, financial aid, student services and salary/debt ratio.
  • Adapt our curricula to include new technologies and scientific evidence, pedagogical advances, and acknowledge differences in the way people learn.
  • Enhance student competencies across the four-year professional program in non-technical skills such as communications, financial literacy, business management, emotional intelligence, and resilience.
  • Enhance communication among professional, graduate and post-graduate clinical programs to promote shared learning and innovation.
  • Identify core foundational knowledge and options for elective advanced education in the veterinary professional curriculum.
  • Continue to develop primary care learning opportunities to better prepare veterinary professional students for entry-level practice and provision of affordable care.
  • Enhance teaching excellence through research, evidence-based practices, and publication to help build a peer-reviewed body of pedagogical scholarship.
  • Evaluate and pursue mission-appropriate revenue opportunities that will further support the sustainability of the school’s educational programs.
Transforming Global Health

Transforming Global Health


Applying the concepts of One Health through inter-professional health teams enhances our ability to solve problems and improve the well-being of humans, animals, and the environment worldwide. Engaging as local, national, and global active citizens expands the impact of our programs and enhances fulfillment of students, faculty, and staff.

  • Expand the impact of global One Health initiatives through interdisciplinary, inter-professional and translational partnerships, and strategic funding affiliations.
  • Strengthen partnerships with the Tisch College of Civic Life.
  • Advance a tradition of active citizenship and recognize students, faculty, and staff for their endeavors.
  • Expand internal and external resources to encourage active citizenship projects initiated by students, faculty, and staff.

Cummings School Story

In 1978, Tufts University established a visionary veterinary school with a One Medicine mission. Today, Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine is an internationally recognized institution that continues to advance One Health initiatives and improve the health and well-being of animals, humans, and the environment.

The only veterinary school in New England, our curricula, high-quality clinical services, research, and dedicated faculty and staff are the cornerstones of our academic excellence. We offer doctoral degrees in veterinary medicine (DVM) and biomedical sciences (PhD), two combined DVM/master’s degree programs (Public Health, Laboratory Animal Medicine), and three stand-alone graduate programs (Animals and Public Policy; Conservation Medicine; Infectious Disease and Global Health).

Signature opportunities within our DVM program include International Veterinary Medicine, Wildlife and Conservation Medicine, and Animal Welfare, Ethics and Policy.

Research is at the heart of academic life at Tufts University. Cummings School is recognized for research contributions in infectious disease and global health, neuroscience, regenerative medicine, and specialty clinical and translational medicine and surgery. We offer our veterinary students valuable research experience through summer research training programs funded for over 25 years by the National Institutes of Health, foundations, and industry partners.


Cummings Veterinary Medical Center treats more than 80,000 patients a year, including small companion animals, exotic pets, horses, food animals, and wildlife. The seven academic teaching hospitals and clinics that comprise Cummings Veterinary Medical Center—Foster Hospital for Small Animals, Hospital for Large Animals, Tufts Ambulatory Service, Tufts Veterinary Emergency Treatment & Specialties, Tufts Wildlife Clinic, Luke and Lily Lerner Spay/Neuter Clinic, Tufts at Tech Community Veterinary Clinic—offer students high-quality, hands-on clinical learning and provide our patients with advanced and specialty veterinary care.

Cummings School‘s community is committed to preparing students for success in all areas of their profession. We foster open-minded, knowledgeable active citizens who are capable of affecting positive change. To date, more than 2,000 graduates have successfully entered careers in a variety of fields, ranging from general and specialty clinical practice and biomedical research to pioneering positions in international medicine, conservation medicine, human-animal interaction, and public health.

We value our strong partnership with Cummings Foundation and its long-term commitment to supporting our school’s mission of healing animals, helping humans and transforming global health. We look forward to expanding the impact of our programs to improve the health of humans and animals locally, nationally, and around the world.