More than 1,700 higher education leaders gathered together in San Diego March 8-11 for ACE’s 96th Annual Meeting. From the opening Atwell Lecture given by University of Michigan President Mary Sue Coleman, to the closing panel on building an inclusive, diverse campus as a means to academic excellence, attendees spent the four days looking at the issues critical to higher education in the 21st century. Many of the sessions focused on emerging technologies and data and how they are transforming campus operations, teaching and research. Eight awards were given to outstanding higher education leaders, and one to an outstanding adult student—Chris Hammann, whose story encapsulates the importance of adult education.
A few of the highlights below:
Closing Plenary—The Great Leadership Challenge: Building Excellence Through Inclusion
Lumina Foundation President and CEO Jamie Merisotis moderated the closing luncheon plenary session, which focused on inclusion as a means to academic excellence.
The panelists were Helen Benjamin, chancellor of Contra Costa Community College District (CA); Sylvia Hurtado, head of the Higher Education and Organizational Change Division of the University of California, Los Angeles; and Martin Michaelson, an attorney with Hogan Lovells in Washington, DC. They discussed the increasing imperative to move away from high selectivity as the barometer of academic excellence and toward inclusion, in the face of shifting national demographics, state funding patterns and legal frameworks and judicial decisions. During the session, Michaelson noted that ACE has been long been involved in leading inclusion initiatives. (Left to right: ACE President Molly Corbett Broad, Helen Benjamin, Jamie Merisotis, Sylvia Hurtado, and Martin Michaelson.)
ACE named Charlene M. Dukes, president of Prince George’s Community College (MD), the 2014 recipient of the Reginald Wilson Diversity Leadership Award at the Annual Meeting closing plenary.
The award is named in honor of Reginald Wilson, senior scholar emeritus at ACE and former director of the Council's Office of Minority Concerns. It is given every year to an individual who has made outstanding contributions and demonstrated sustained commitment to diversity in higher education [read more]. (Left to right: ACE President Molly Corbett Broad, Charlene Dukes, Reginald Wilson.)
Chris Hammann, 43, an employee and student at Northern Kentucky University, was named ACE’s Adult Learner of the Year during the Tuesday morning plenary session.
Hammann, a Marine Corps veteran of two military conflicts and a married father of three from Cincinnati, received a $500 scholarship to help continue his education. He is currently a junior at Northern Kentucky pursuing a degree in social work and is president of the Norse Veterans Student Organization, while also working full time as a heavy equipment operator at the university [read more]. (Left to right: Vicki Berling, interim director of the Norse Advising Center at Northern Kentucky University; Chris Hammann; and Cathy Sandeen, ACE vice president for education attainment and innovation.)
The New World of Analytics
Tuesday morning's plenary continued with the general theme that emerged from the Annual Meeting: How new technologies have transformed colleges and universities in recent years, and what these technologies and the accompanying data and analytics mean for the future of higher education.
The panel discussion was moderated by Louis Soares, vice president of ACE's Center for Policy Research and Strategy, and featured Jeff Olson, vice president for Data Science at The College Board; John Rome, deputy chief information officer at Arizona State University; and Candace Thille, founding director of the Open Learning Initiative and senior research fellow at Stanford University (CA). For more on how this topic played out at the Annual Meeting, see Paul Fain's story, The Sky Isn't Falling, in Inside Higher Ed. (Left to right: John Rome, Jeff Olson, Candace Thille, Louis Soares.)
Aneesh Chopra: Harnessing the Power of Technology to Compete in the 21st Century
Aneesh Chopra, the first U.S. Chief Technology Officer under President Obama, keynoted Monday’s luncheon plenary session with a speech that looked at how higher education leaders can use technology and data as a catalyst for innovation.
Commenting on key technology trends that confront public and private sector organizations, Chopra said higher education institutions can cast a wide net in seeking new ways to "Harness the Power of Technology to Compete in the 21st Century," as his speech was titled. On the power of technology and innovation, he gave the example of a group of Massachusetts Institute of Technology students who devised a simple yet ingenuous solution to winning a U.S. Department of Defense contest to use social media to identify the GPS coordinates for all 10 balloons, suspended at fixed locations across the country. The MIT students came up with incentives that motivated people to forward its message to others, and in the process collected massive amounts of data on the size and scope of internet connections.
Freeman A. Hrabowski, III, president of The University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC), was presented with the 2014 Council of Fellows/Fidelity Investments Mentor Award on Monday.
The award is bestowed annually to acknowledge the enormous role of mentors in the success of ACE Fellows Program participants [read more]. (Hrabowski, center, with ACE President Molly Corbett Broad and Rick Mitchell, executive vice president, Tax-Exempt Retirement Services, Fidelity Investments.)
Arizona State University Receives ACE/Fidelity Investments Award for Institutional Transformation
Arizona State University is the first-ever recipient of the ACE/Fidelity Investments Award for Institutional Transformation, ACE announced at the Monday morning plenary session.
The new yearly award was accepted by Arizona State University President Michael M. Crow (pictured with ACE President Molly Corbett Broad) on behalf of his institution. The award was created to recognize institutions that have responded to higher education challenges in innovative and creative ways and achieved dramatic changes in a relatively brief period, and includes a $20,000 prize [read more].
James H. Mullen, Jr., president of Allegheny College (PA), has been elected chair of the Board of Directors of ACE.
He succeeds Diana Natalicio, president of the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP), and will serve for one year. Before becoming ACE Board chair, Mullen served as vice chair. ACE's membership also elected Renu Khator, chancellor of the University of Houston (UH) System and president of UH, vice chair; and Robert L. Caret, president of the University of Massachusetts, secretary [read more].
ACE and The State University of New York (SUNY), through its Center for Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL), on Monday announced the winners of the first-ever Leaders in Internationalization Through Technology Awards.
The inaugural awards—presented to Great Lakes College Association, Mount Holyoke College (MA) and SUNY Cortland—are part of a new program sponsored by Asahi Net International (ANI) that aims to recognize and promote the use of technology to enhance institutional internationalization and global competence among students at U.S. colleges and universities [read more].
TIAA-CREF Honors Scott Cowen with 2014 Theodore M. Hesburgh Award for Leadership Excellence
The TIAA-CREF Institute announced Scott Cowen, president of Tulane University, as the winner of the 2014 TIAA-CREF Hesburgh Award for Leadership Excellence at Monday's lunchtime plenary.
Cowen provided unwavering leadership of Tulane’s campus, faculty and students and its surrounding community following Hurricane Katrina in 2005 in New Orleans. With more than $650 million in damages and losses to the campus alone, Cowen was tasked with ensuring the university experience would continue even though the campus itself was closed. Read the full announcement from the TIAA-CREF Institute. (Left to right: Ronald R. Pressman, TIAA-CREF executive vice president and chief operating officer; Scott Cowen; ACE President Molly Corbett Broad. )
A Conversation on Internationalization
John Sexton, president of New York University; Nigel Thrift, vice president and chancellor of the University of Warwick; and Sergio M. Alcocer, undersecretary for North American Affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mexico spoke to meeting attendees Monday morning about international issues in higher education.
ACE Presidential Advisor for Global Initiatives Patti McGill Peterson moderated as the three addressed a number of topics, including how institutions, regardless of size and type, could form more global partnerships. Community colleges, according to the panel, can play a key role in this, particularly in driving workforce development in the North American region. The three addressed some skepticism on international rankings and metrics. (Left to right: ACE President Molly Corbett Broad, John Sexton, Nigel Thrift, Sergio Alcocer, Patti Petersen.)
Doris Kearns Goodwin Talks Presidents Past and President in Talk With ACE's Terry Hartle
Pulitzer Prize-winning author and historian Doris Kearns Goodwin spoke at Monday morning's plenary session, in a Q&A session with ACE Senior Vice President Terry Hartle.
Goodwin engaged the audience, telling stories from the past four decades that she’s lived with dead presidents. The majority of the talk focused on the area in her latest book The Bully Pulpit, about the relationship between Teddy Roosevelt and William Howard Taft. More from Karlyn Borysenko of Eduventures here.
University of Michigan President Mary Sue Coleman Gives Atwell Lecture at Opening Session, Receives ACE Lifetime Achievement Award
University of Michigan President Mary Sue Coleman kicked off ACE’s 96th Annual Meeting Sunday afternoon with the Robert H. Atwell Lecture, the traditional opening to the meeting each year.
Her focus was on the need for universities to become more innovative and entrepreneurial, using her own institution and state–which was hit earlier and harder by the 2008 recession than any state in the country–as an example of what can be done. Coleman also was presented with the ACE Lifetime Achievement Award. She has led the University of Michigan since August 2002 and is a recognized national higher education leader [read more].
Kerger: Women Leaders Must Focus on Mentoring the Next Generation
Paula Kerger, president and CEO of PBS, was influenced early on by the power of television, particularly by the show I Love Lucy and its namesake character, who represented an inspirational role model for a young girl growing up in a rural area—tall, funny and always striving for something more.
Later, it was The Mary Tyler Moore Show that captured Kerger’s imagination, featuring another strong female character who showed that women could be career-oriented and lead independent lives, Kerger recounted during her keynote speech March 8 at the ACE Women’s Leadership Dinner, one of the events held during ACE’s 96th Annual Meeting [read more].
Governors State University President Elaine P. Maimon Receives Donna Shavlik Award
ACE presented the 2014 Donna Shavlik Award to Governors State University (IL) President Elaine P. Maimon at ACE’s 96th Annual Meeting in San Diego, during the Women’s Leadership Dinner on Saturday evening, March 8.
ACE established the Donna Shavlik Award to honor the long and outstanding service of Donna Shavlik, former director of ACE's Office of Women in Higher Education (now part of the Inclusive Excellence Group). Presented annually, the award honors an individual who demonstrates a sustained commitment to advancing women in higher education, through leadership and career development, campus climate and mentoring [read more]. (Left to right: Donna Shavlik; Elaine Maimon; and Kim Bobby, director of ACE's inclusive excellence group.)
University of Alabama’s Graduate Parent Support Program Recognized With ACE State Network Leadership Award
Also at the Women's Leadership Dinner, the 2014 ACE State Network Leadership Award was given to The University of Alabama’s (UA) Graduate Parent Support (GPS) program.
GPS, which was launched in the fall of 2009 by the UA Graduate School, aims to serve graduate students who have children by providing them with an innovative and accessible academic, social and emotional support system [read more]. (Left to right: Jessica Kozloff, president of Academic Search; Cori Perdue, UA Graduate Parent Support program director; Lisa Rossbacher, president of Southern Polytechnic University and chair of the ACE Women's Network; and Kim Bobby, director of ACE's inclusive excellence group.)