It's no exaggeration to say that college and university governing boards suffer from an identity problem. Administrators have increasingly gravitated toward leadership roles, reducing the board's relevance to essentially being a rubber stamp for strategies and projects that have been determined without their counsel.
In 2001, administrators at Plymouth State University began pondering the notion of giving alumni access to their own web portal, just as undergraduates at the New Hampshire institution had since 2000. The idea was for the portal to provide alumni with a simple way to connect with the university and with each other.
Technology is so omnipresent in the modern world that people don't notice it all around them, until something goes wrong. At the same time, there is a constant bombardment of technology information, ranging from product details for a new gadget to security breaches at all types of institutions.
The annual Educause conference is the premier teaching and technology showcase for higher education, and this year's expo, held in Dallas in October, was no exception. Attendees got sneak peaks at new products planned for early '07 rollout and saw the first fruits of some much discussed mergers from last year's conference.
If we build it, will they come? That was the $16 million question Temple University (Pa.) executives, administrators, and trustees pondered before they gave the go-ahead to construct the largest student computer center in the country.
Twelve years ago, Shirley Reed traveled deep into the heart of Texas. Arriving in a region of the Rio Grande Valley beset by poverty, unemployment, and some of the lowest education rates in the country, she set about building a community college.