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Professional Opinion

Nick Kalm is president and Courtney Harper is senior vice president at Reputation Partners, a communications consultancy that specializes in labor communications for universities and other organizations.

Unionization movements will continue to gain traction at colleges and universities, so it’s important for administrators to prepare. While pay, benefits and shared governance will be pressing issues, many institutions fail to develop a strategy to communicate with employees.

Lex O. McMillan III is president of Albright College in Reading, Pennsylvania.

If the heart of a liberal (hence, liberating) education is learning to see through the eyes of others—both living and dead—I now see clearly how the bumpy roads of Haiti led us to new learning about others and about ourselves.

Robert Miller is vice president for enrollment management of Centenary University.

Ubiquitous in the business world, big data is being adopted by higher education, particularly in the area of recruitment. With stagnant or declining recruitment budgets and increased competition for students, leveraging the data most colleges capture is a cost-effective approach that can yield significant results.

Herman Bulls is vice chairman of JLL Americas, specializing in delivering comprehensive real estate solutions to federal, state and local governments, nonprofit organizations and higher education institutions.

The phrase “town and gown” is rooted in the notion that universities and the surrounding communities are naturally at odds. But forward-looking colleges and universities are finding deep value in blurring those lines, and instead are leveraging mixed-use developments to improve the community and campus alike.

David Seelow is the founding director of the Center for Game and Simulation-based Learning at Excelsior College.

Watching preschoolers play on touchscreen devices makes it clear that the future college students of America are the connected generation. Higher ed must embrace game-like learning just as progressive Silicon Valley companies have, or risk bored, disengaged, unprepared students in the classroom and in the workplace.

Bill Muse is vice president of administration and finance at Schreiner University in Texas.

Effective collaboration between administration, academic officers and faculty is crucial for effective leadership. Enrollment levels, academic freedom, financial viability and student success could all be affected if these individuals don’t team up to develop an effective strategy.

Jo Allen is president of Meredith College in Raleigh, North Carolina.

The role of women’s colleges—far beyond their origins in offering access to college degrees—is to help women flourish. Some women’s colleges have focused on women’s leadership; some on career preparation in STEM and other areas where women have been under-represented; and still others on health care, education and areas where women excel.

The success of the studio concept does not just resonate for a graduate student audience, but can and should be articulated for undergraduates as well. If MBAs must work collaboratively, digitally and dynamically, so should undergraduate students.

Bryon L. Grigsby is president of Moravian College, a private liberal arts college in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.

Vocation: It’s a word with deep and important significance. Liberal Arts: This is an ideal of education with an equally deep set of meanings. Liberal arts colleges already do a great job developing a diverse group of socially responsible, critical thinkers, but they must start guiding students to their true vocations. 

Michael Crow is president of Arizona State University and Laurie Leshin is president of Worcester Polytechnic Institute (Mass.).

With unsafe lead levels in city water systems, injured military veterans in need of smart prosthetics, and a demand for sustainable sources of clean energy, our need for engineers has never been greater. The good news is that despite concerns to the contrary, the ranks of engineers in the United States are growing.

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