2023 Annual Meeting

Presidents' Trust Symposium

Friday, January 20, 2023 /

Hyatt Regency San Francisco

Leading in Times of Polarization

The annual AAC&U Presidents’ Trust Symposium provides opportunities for chief executive officers to network with peers and engage with leading experts on the most pressing issues facing higher education. Participation in the symposium is open only to chief executive officers of colleges, universities, foundations, associations, and invited guests.

The 2023 symposium will be held in person as part of the AAC&U annual meeting and will focus on “Leading in Times of Polarization.” Sessions will address presidential transitions, excellence and equity in undergraduate education, athletics and academic quality, incivility, and higher education’s contributions to lives of purpose.

Register for AAC&U's annual meeting and the Presidents' Trust Symposium.

  • Shelly C. Lowe

    Featured Speaker: Shelly C. Lowe

    Chair, National Endowment for the Humanities

    Shelly C. Lowe is chair of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Lowe is a citizen of the Navajo Nation and grew up on the Navajo Reservation in Ganado, Arizona. From 2015 to 2021, she served as a member of the National Council on the Humanities, the 26-member advisory body to NEH, an appointment she received from President Obama. Lowe’s career in higher education has included roles as executive director of the Harvard University Native American Program, assistant dean in the Yale College Dean’s Office, and director of the Native American Cultural Center at Yale University.

  • William Damon

    Featured Speaker: William Damon

    Director, Stanford Center on Adolescence; Professor of Education, Stanford University

    William Damon is the Director of the Stanford Center on Adolescence and Professor of Education at Stanford University. Damon's research explores how people develop purpose and integrity in their work, family, and civic life. Since 2017, he has focused on the development of purpose in contemporary contexts of U.S. higher education, in a multi-institution study funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Damon's work has been used in professional training programs in fields such as journalism, law, teaching, and business, and in K–12-character education programs. He is the author of the influential book The Path to Purpose.

Symposium Schedule

All times are in US Pacific Time.
The schedule is subject to change.

8:00 a.m.

Breakfast Available
8:15 - 8:20 a.m.
Symposium Welcome and Opening Framing
8:20 - 9:45 a.m.
Developing Students' Purpose Orientation

Research Presentation by William Damon, Professor of Education at Stanford University and Director of the Stanford Center on Adolescence

Panel Discussion to Follow
9:45 - 10:45 a.m.
Providing a Blueprint for Excellence & Equity in Undergraduate Education
Panel Discussion with Members of the Boyer 2030 Commission
10:45 - 11:45 a.m.

Responding to Acts of Incivility
Panel Discussion

11:45 a.m. - 1:15 a.m.
Presidents' Luncheon: Leading in Times of Polarization
Keynote by Shelly C. Lowe, Chair, National Endowment for the Humanities
1:15 - 2:15 p.m.
Linking Athletics and Academic Integrity
Panel Discussion
2:15 - 3:15 p.m.
Handling Presidential Transitions: Transitioning In and Out with Grace
Panel Discussion
3:15 - 3:30 p.m.
Closing Remarks

About the Presidents' Trust

The Presidents' Trust is a network of higher education leaders who advance the vision, values, and practices that connect liberal education with the needs of an increasingly diverse student body, a global workforce, and thriving communities.