2015 Annual Meeting: Liberal Education, Global Flourishing, and the Equity Imperative
The Centennial Annual Meeting
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In 2015, AAC&U will celebrate its Centennial. To mark this milestone, and in the service of the nation’s diverse college learners, AAC&U will devote the entire Centennial Year to a far-reaching exploration of the connections between high-quality liberal learning and Americans’ global future and of the changes needed to drive equitable access to high-quality learning for the millions of students who remain underserved at all levels of our educational system.
This year of exploration will begin at AAC&U’s Centennial Annual Meeting—“Liberal Education, Global Flourishing, and the Equity Imperative”—which will examine the multiple meanings of “global flourishing” for individuals and society. In partnership with the entire higher education community—private, public, large, small, open-access and selective, two-year and four-year institutions— Annual Meeting sessions will explore the kinds of learning, combining high touch and high tech, that Americans need now to engage, contribute, and thrive in their own pursuits of happiness, as participants in a fast-changing global economy and as citizens whose choices will affect the future both of US democracy and of global interdependence.
Annual Meeting participants will probe higher education’s role in engaging students with the world’s “grand challenges” and “wicked problems” and in helping to create a more just and sustainable future for the United States and for societies around the globe. Together, we will connect the equity imperative to the US talent-development imperative, and explore both “what works” and how we advance what works to better prepare twenty-first-century students for work, life, and citizenship. With digital experimentation expanding daily, we’ll study these innovation hubs for ways that e-learning can help us fulfill the promise of an empowering education for “traditional” and “new majority” students alike.
And, acknowledging both AAC&U’s mission and the highly contested environment in which educators now work to foster high-quality learning, we will focus on both the societal value—economic, civic, personal—and the future of liberal education. Together, we will seek ways to foster the hallmark capacities developed through liberal learning across all institutions, all degree programs, for all learners—especially those first-generation learners who rightly see higher education as their portal to a better future.
AAC&U members know and value the educational power of liberal education—in expanding economic opportunity, in developing talent, and in fostering both the social imagination and the trained intelligence to tackle complex problems. Through this Centennial Meeting and across the Centennial Year, we will work with our members to build broader employer, trustee, and policy maker engagement with liberal education as America’s benchmark for quality and to advance innovative practices that can make high-quality learning for all college students not just an aspiration but Americans’ most important investment in our globally shared future.
Our members are the vibrant heart of this association. Their work is this community’s shared achievement.
As we proudly celebrate one hundred years of leadership for high-quality learning, we warmly invite your participation in this landmark AAC&U Annual Meeting.