UC president signs on to ACE national challenge for workplace flexibility

Stefanie Botelho's picture

University of Cincinnati President Santa J. Ono has signed onto a national statement of support for expanding workplace flexibility.

The statement is part of the National Challenge for Higher Education: Retaining a 21st Century Workforce campaign supported by the American Council on Education. President Ono’s participation was recommended by leaders in the UC LEAF program, a UC initiative that is aimed at recruiting and retaining more female faculty and female faculty in underrepresented groups into the science, technology, engineering, math and medical disciplines.

Funded by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, the campaign builds on successful models of workplace flexibility that have succeeded in corporate America. It was launched in June 2013 by ACE, the coordinating body for all the nation’s higher education associations.

“This is an important step forward for UC,” Ono said. Among the work/life balance policies already offered at UC for faculty are some “stop the tenure clock” policies for the care of newly born infants or newly adopted children under age 5. In addition, the university is already improving its ability to recruit “dual-career” faculty couples through its Creating Our Third Century plan in conjunction with UC’s colleges.

The campaign emphasizes that flexible workplace policies and practices enable faculty to better balance their professional work and their personal lives. In turn, reduced turnover leads to increased commitment, engagement and ultimately increased productivity.

“Institutions that are thinking about the future and that want to compete globally are increasingly embracing workplace flexibility policies as a tool to recruit the best and brightest,” said ACE President Molly Corbett Broad. For more information and for periodic updates on the National Challenge for Higher Education, please visit http://www.acenet.edu/nationalchallenge.