Affiliate Member Insights

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Each month, ACE highlights new and timely thought leadership from our affiliate members. Visit the pages below to explore featured content, including case studies of recent work with ACE member institutions, new proprietary research, white papers, podcasts, and more. 

Learn more about all our affiliate members by visiting the Affiliate Member Directory

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​Latest: September and October 2023 Insights


​Role of trustees in risk governance in higher education ​​

College and university boards of trustees must understand their role in risk oversight to address the unique challenges higher education institutions face​.


Creating a Latino/a employee experience that speaks the language

With 44% of millennials in America being multicultural, the workforce looks a lot different than it did 50—or even 20—years ago.¹ One rapidly growing demographic within the workforce is the Latino/a community. The number of Latino/a workers in the labor force has tripled in the last 30 years, and by 2030, they are expected to account for one out of five workers.² Explore how to build an inclusive employee experience that reaches past translation.

​Gray Associates

The Artists Are Not Starving: How Arts Programs Profit Students and Schools

Can arts programs lead to prosperous careers? We dissect recent data that challenges the “starving artist” stereotype. Explore the resilient growth of visual and performing arts enrollments post-pandemic, the diverse paths graduates take, and surprising employment outcomes. Discover why arts education is not just surviving but thriving. 


The Class of 2024 is ready to launch into an AI-enabled future​

The latest report from Handshake shows half of 2024 graduates plan to build new skills in light of the emergence of generative AI. A third—including more than half of tech majors—say they plan to use generative AI in their career. Learn more about how this class is adapting to fast-changing technology along with other career-related trends.

Huron Consulting Group

The paradox of higher ed mergers and acquisitions​

Financial headwinds, among other dynamics, are driving interest in higher education mergers and acquisitions (M&A) as a solution for institutional sustainability. What makes M&A successful for colleges and universities: finding “win-win-wins” among institutions with compatible aims. Read this perspective from Huron on how to position your institution for success in the M&A ecosystem.


The Jed Foundation (JED) and State Higher Education Executive Officers Association (SHEEO) Launch Student Mental Health and Wellness Learning Community
Over the next year, JED and SHEEO will debut the inaugural Student Mental Health and Wellness Learning Community focused on the development and implementation of state- and system-wide policy recommendations that bolster institutions’ ability to effectively promote and support student mental health and wellness. Five states will be selected for $25,000 planning grants to facilitate their participation and identify strategies that effectively support students of color and students from low-income circumstances who face systemic inequities and experience pronounced disparities in mental health-care access. 


Critical Competencies for Leading “Big Scary Change"  

Given the magnitude of change across academia, the safe solutions that have long guided institutional growth are no longer sufficient. This paper explores the skills needed to direct transformation.

August 2023 Insights

Amazon Web Services

Making Financial Aid Simple for Students and Staff​

Highline College, the most diverse community college in Washington State, needed a way to make the financial aid process simpler and more transparent for students and reduce the workload for staff. Working with Amazon Web Services (AWS) and focusing on the user experience, the newly implemented financial aid tool resulted in immediate benefits for students. Read how Highline College improved the student financial aid experience and allowed team members to focus their time and resources on serving students and processing awards, cutting their application to award time in half.


Government's Role in Catalyzing Innovation​

Academia has long produced breakthrough innovations, but these innovations rarely come without the help of government, industry, philanthropy, or other players. Learn how leaders can coordinate innovation’s diverse players to create the future’s solutions.


Global Sentiment Survey 2022​

While many employees are displaying remarkable levels of hope, fatigue and stress are still on the rise. Fidelity’s global survey shows that over the last six months, 1 in 3 workers across the globe are experiencing feelings of fatigue. Employers can help ease employee burn out by supporting a healthy work/life balance and overall wellbeing.

​​Gray Associates

 A Shot of Perspective on the Nursing Shortage: Insights into Employer Demand​

Uncover the surprising trends shaping the future of nursing with Gray’s Head of Research, Elaine Rowles! Delve into the intriguing interplay between enrollment, job postings, and salaries for RNs and LPNs. Despite certain declines, the demand for nurses remains strong, leaving a profound impact on nursing programs and the overall healthcare landscape. Explore how educators and employers are actively shaping the future of nursing. Plus, get valuable insights into the recent data on nursing jobs and its implications for higher education.

Huron Consulting Group

Nonprofit Simplifies Financial Processes with Configurable ERP Solutions​

It’s not unusual for nonprofit organizations that rely on federal contracts and grants to have complex administrative processes. Read how a private, nonprofit research organization that manages the work of 60,000 academic research associates annually worked with Huron to develop configurable Workday solutions to modernize its financial transaction processes.

Jelly Digital Marketing

Digital Upskilling and Talent Shortages​

 Amidst a landscape of talent scarcity, Canada's labour force confronts a universal challenge that spans industries. From factories to delivery routes, the sweeping influence of technology has long been reshaping our nation. Darian Kovacs emphasizes that to safeguard against technological displacement, Canadians must wholeheartedly adopt upskilling. This imperative shift ensures the persistence of human relevance and competitive skillsets in an evolving landscape dominated by technology.


Higher Education for a Civil Society

Higher education leaders can recommit to the convening power that they uniquely possess within the walls of the academy, but more importantly, within their communities, writes WittKieffer principal Melody Rose, Ph.D. Only through intentional convening across our differences in environments where respect, intellectual curiosity and a shared commitment to the values of our republic can we bolster the institutions and rule of law required to solve the massive challenges to our shared future.​

June and July 2023 Insights

Abundance International Education Institute

Student Success - How can we better prepare the students for the global challenges?

The views and attitudes towards postgraduate entrance exams among graduates in China and the U.S. In China, there is a focus on enhancing academic qualifications and job competitiveness, while in the US, employment and career development are prioritized. However, there are alternative pathways for Chinese students who have not passed the entrance exams. The importance of fostering inclusive learning environments and ensuring equity and completion in education is highlighted for student success in a global society.

Civitas Learning

Data-Activated Strategic Planning Supports Fiscally Sustainable Student Success

Institutional leaders who’ve found the most success understand that financial stability requires investing in a student success model that supports students and fiscal health. Read the first step they take to achieve 4–5 times ROI from their student success initiatives.


As workforce well-being dips, leaders ask: What will it take to move the needle?

The Deloitte Well-being at Work survey sheds light on what leaders can do to make progress. Empowering managers. Promoting accountability. Focusing on human outcomes.

Gray Associates

Analyzing Competition at the Program Level

Want to attract new students to your academic programs? Understanding the competitive landscape is crucial. Dive into the power of a Program Evaluation System (PES) and gain valuable insights into your program-level competition. Discover competitors, program sizes, and market trends that drive enrollment growth, and see how Gray’s Program Evaluation System can revolutionize your approach, helping your institution stand out.


The Role of a Board of Trustees in a Presidential Search

The board's role in academia is primarily advisory and fiduciary – to serve as a thought partner with leadership. The most notable exception lies in the hiring of a new president, which requires a board to carry out unique responsibilities thoughtfully and with integrity. This article by WittKieffer senior partner Lucy Leske outlines key areas – from selecting a search committee to setting leadership expectations for the role to cultivating candidates – where boards can and should play a central role in presidential recruitment.

​​​​​​May 2023 Insights


How Universities Can Tackle the Current Talent Shortage

Deloitte’s Cole Clark, Storbeck Search’s Shelly Weiss Storbeck, and Carnegie Mellon’s Michelle Piekutowski discuss the challenges facing hiring and retention in higher education.


How New Grads Are Navigating an Uncertain Economy, Shifting Remote Work Landscape, and Next-Gen Technology

In an uncertain economy, the class of 2023 is rethinking what they want in a job. According to new data from Handshake, just 31 percent of 2023 graduates are favoring big-name companies in their job search—a 10 percentage point drop from last summer. Only 19 percent are favoring fast-growing companies—a 20 percentage point drop. What is this class looking for? With layoffs and inflation top of mind, it’s all about practical bottom-line benefits like stability and starting salary.

Huron Consulting Group

May is Mental Health Awareness Month. Explore Emerging Best Practices for Campus Wellness

Over the last decade, demand for mental health services has outpaced available resources on nearly every U.S. campus. With students citing mental health as a top reason for dropping out of school and growing concerns about staff burnout making mental health issues even more prominent, colleges and universities must maintain a continuous presence and emphasis on mental health for students, faculty, and staff. Read this perspective from Huron on emerging best practices.

April 2​023 Insights

​​​​ACE 2023

ACE welcomed hundreds of leaders to ACE’s Annual Meeting in Washington, DC to learn the latest about nearly every facet of higher education, including the issues college leaders are facing now, the strategies that are getting results today, and the challenges that may be encountered in the future.

March 2023 Insights

​​​Academic Search

Upward Mobility for Women in Higher Education

While the number of women in leadership positions in higher education continues to be on the rise, it’s clear that women are still behind when it comes to breaking the glass ceiling of the academy.

Modern States Education Alliance

Saving Time Through Modern States is as Valuable as Money​

​Nearly 400,000 learners have turned to Modern States as a solution to avoid college debt. For many, the most valuable aspect of the philanthropy is saving time. “Modern States is an amazing, free opportunity for anyone seeking college credit, but it’s an especially nice fit for those with limited funds and packed schedules,” said Emme Jennings, a criminal justice major at University of Houston.​


How to Retain Your Best Staff Members in Higher Education​

​Four tips from a former student-affairs administrator on how to improve work culture on campus.

February 2023 Insights

​Modern States Education Alliance

Modern States and CLEP Are There for Students When Advanced Placement Isn’t an Option

Advanced Placement (AP) courses help many high school students get ahead in their studies, but only if their schools participate in the program. Modern States exists for everyone, including AP students and those already enrolled in college. A philanthropy, Modern States offers 32 completely free online courses that prepare learners for the College Board’s College Level Examination Program (CLEP). With a passing score on one CLEP exam, learners could earn three or more credits at 2,900 U.S. colleges and universities. Learners who use Modern States to pass CLEP exams are likely to graduate months earlier than other students.​


A President's Priority List​

As higher education emerges from the Covid-19 era and all its tremors and tribulations, presidents (under advisement from their trustees and leadership teams) are recalibrating and rethinking what they want to prioritize as they lead their campuses into a brave new era. Mid-way through another academic year, what issues should be top of mind as we head into 2023?

January 2023 Insights

​AGB Search

Building the Workforce for the Future

AGB Search and Mercer continue their series Leadership Connections in Higher Education by discussing prevalent issues in higher education human resources. In a recent Connections event, presenters explored the large-scale Workforce Development project underway at Villanova University in partnership with Mercer. Building the Workforce for the Future outlines the steps of the project and discusses some of the alternative strategies institutions are employing to recruit and retain talent.​​



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