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Articles: Administration & Management

A leadership academy developed for students who are doing well academically at Thomas College helps ensure they also feel connected socially. This focus on low-risk students has resulted in greater retention rates over a three-year period.

For decades, colleges and universities have used big data to track high-risk students and intervene as needed. Now a growing number of institutions are using data tools to track and analyze another group: successful students.

In 1969, three-quarters of faculty at U.S. colleges and universities were tenured or tenure-track. That number dropped to just above one-quarter in 2013. (Click to enlarge)

Colleges and universities have made spending on administrators and part-time instructors a higher priority than raising salaries of core faculty members who have the biggest impact on learning, says a new report from the Campaign for the Future of Higher Education.

Amy Collier joined Vermont’s Middlebury College in July as its first associate provost for digital learning.

In an emerging trend that illustrates the growing importance of digital strategy in higher education, a handful of universities have named a chief digital officer to their leadership teams to merge the worlds of instruction and IT.

Mary Sue Coleman is a national spokesperson on the educational value of affirmative action and diverse perspectives in the classroom.

Mary Sue Coleman, a former president of the University of Michigan and the University of Iowa, has been named the next president of the Association of American Universities, an organization for research institutions.

She will succeed the retiring Hunter R. Rawlings III, who has held the post since June 2011.

How important is it for college administrators to study successful student characteristics?

“Focusing primarily on identifying at-risk students, without also identifying the profiles of successful students, is much like a doctor diagnosing a patient with an illness or disease, yet failing to offer a treatment plan or cure. When administrators understand the characteristics of successful students, they can invest in policies, programs and services designed to maximize students’ chances of success.”

Michael Kistner, CEO, Zogotech

Earlier this year, former College of DuPage President Robert Breuder almost won himself a $763,000 golden parachute to leave the institution in March 2016, three years before his contract expired; that contract has since been voided by the college’s board, and the package reduced to $495,000.

In an apparent response, Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner has signed two new laws limiting terms for community college presidents and restricting their severance packages.

Like it or not, we spend a lot of time on planes and in airports as we travel to campuses across the Nation and around the world. Over the 2015 summer session we sensed winds of change in the aeronautics industry – read as, devising new global security measures; retrofitting outdated air fleets; and creating safe and enjoyable air travel experiences.

The skill set required for today’s top jobs in higher education has never been more extensive or demanding. Boards of Trustees are looking for leadership in several areas: academic authority, fundraising ability, public relations and media savvy, legal and political sensitivity, as well as ease of movement between constituent groups—alumni, students, faculty, parents, donors, business leaders, government—all with significant claims on the president’s time and attention.

Several years ago we shared with University Business readership our prognostications on contemporary polytechnic institutions popping up across the U.S. In relatively short time, higher ed is still surfing the Polytechnic Revival wave at engineering schools, colleges, and universities across the Nation.

The common heritage of Classic Polytechnics extends back to the 1745 founding of the Technische Universität Braunschweig in Germany; the establishment in 1794 of the École Polytechnique in France; and the first American polytechnic, Rensselaer, chartered in 1824.

In her keynote speech at UBTech 2015, Worcester Polytechnic Institute President Laurie Leshin said educators must drive innovation—and the economy—by inspiring students to ask tough questions.

The leadership teams of InfoComm International and UBTech/University Business will collaborate on conference programming and promotional initiatives to offer expanded participation opportunities for higher education leaders at the flagship annual conferences of both organizations.

produced when colleges engage students, faculty and staff in the notion of vocational callings.

In the eyes of many, higher education has become an industry focused on a singular goal—career training—and college students these days forgo the big questions about who they are and how they can change the world. But sociology professor Tim Clydesdale says higher education can retain its deeper cultural role.

Carol Patton

Earlier this year, CUPA-HR—an HR association for higher education—conducted its 2015 Employee Healthcare Benefits in Higher Education Survey. Of the 525 public and private institutions that responded, 70 percent offer healthcare coverage to same-sex domestic partners.

One of the more demanding jobs in higher ed belongs to the provost—the chief academic officer. With ever-widening fields of responsibility, the position often consists largely of on-the-job training. James Martin and James Samels, authors of UB’s online “Future Shock” column, expect their new book will help change that. The Provost’s Handbook: The Role of the Chief Academic Officer (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2015) is a collection of essays from veteran CAOs who offer perspective on many issues these administrators confront.

Thomas J. Botzman is president of Misericordia University in Dallas, Pennsylvania.

Decades ago, U.S. Sen. Claiborne Pell eloquently stated: “The strength of the United States is not the gold in Fort Knox or the weapons of mass destruction we have, but the sum total of the education and character of our people.”

Community colleges have achieved the goal of providing broader and cheaper access to higher education. Now, experts and administrators say, the focus must turn more aggressively toward student success and completion.

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