Presidential Leadership in Crisis: Sustaining Self and the Future of the Profession
October 24, 2022
Strong leadership is essential to the future thriving of higher education. But, a college presidency has never been an easy job. Recent realities have only added to the complexity and precarity of the position: an ongoing pandemic; violence on campus, including gun violence, domestic violence, bomb threats, and acts of racism; government intrusion into campus speech, campus policies, and curricula; judicial decisions causing burgeoning uncertainty for those most marginalized on our campuses, including women, people of color, low-income families, and immigrants; and political division that threatens healthy dialogue and critical inquiry. How can college presidents successfully lead through these crises? Who will aspire to this increasingly difficult role?
This conversation is intended for presidents and those who support their leadership. Through reflections from current presidents and conversation with colleagues, this event engages some of the following questions:
- How do presidents maintain their own well-being amid stress and burnout?
- How do presidents navigate culture wars—cultural conflict between social groups and the struggle for dominance of their values, beliefs, and practices?
- How do we use the presidential voice in a politically divided time?
This town hall was presented by the AAC&U Presidents' Trust, a diverse 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. Through the generous support of Credo, this recording is available free to all college and university presidents and the office staff who support their work.
AAC&U advances the democratic purposes of higher education by promoting equity, innovation, and excellence in liberal education. The AAC&U Presidents' Trust brings together leaders of institutions of all types and sizes from across the global higher education landscape to share ideas, address common challenges, and advance shared objectives. As a voice and a force for liberal education, the Presidents' Trust champions equity, academic quality, and student success.
With a vision to impact one million learners, Credo partners with higher education leaders to create transformational student experiences and outcomes through a focus on strategy, leadership, and culture.
Lynn PasquerellaPresident, AAC&U
Joretta NelsonVice Chairman & Founder of Moving the Needle/Owner, Credo
Emma JonesExecutive Vice President/Owner, Credo
Barbara FarleyPresident, Illinois College
Marjorie HassPresident, Council of Independent Colleges
Larry JohnsonPresident, Guttman Community College
Suzanne JohnsonPresident, Green River College
|2:00 - 2:05 p.m. ET||Welcome & Introduction to Presidents' Trust|
Presenter: Lynn Pasquerella, President, AAC&U
|2:05 - 2:15 p.m. ET||Framing Context & Overview of Town Hall Format|
|2:15 - 3:15 p.m. ET||Discussion by Higher Education Leaders|
|3:15 - 4:00 p.m. ET||Guided Reflection & Break-Out Conversations|
Facilitators: Joretta Nelson and Emma Jones
|4:00 p.m. ET||Conclusion|
Presenter: Lynn Pasquerella