College Presidents Offer Advice to Aspiring Leaders

As more community college presidents reach retirement age, there’s growing interest in leadership training, along with efforts to recruit more minorities for top college posts.
For those exploring the possibility of working their way up to a position as a community college president, leadership training programs such as the American Association of Community Colleges’ (AACC) Future Leaders Institute andFuture Presidents Institute offer insights into governance, fundraising, budgeting, strategic planning and all other aspects of college leadership.
Path to the presidency
According to a recent survey, the average age of presidents at all types of colleges is 60.7, said Narcisa Polonio, vice president for education, research and board leadership services at theAssociation of Community College Trustees (ACCT). Seventy-three percent are male, and 12.6 percent are people of color. And although one in five came from outside education, many of them had been in academe, left and have returned, she said.
Among community college presidents, the demographic characteristics of presidents do not reflect the large increase of minority students. The number of African-American community college presidents has risen slightly, from 4.9 percent in 2006 to 5.3 percent in 2011. During that period, the number of Hispanic presidents has actually decreased, from 6.1 percent to 5.0 percent.

The traditional path to the presidency—where a faculty department head moves up to dean and then vice president—is still common, Polonio said, although an increasing number of presidents come from non-academic leadership positions, such as vice president of student affairs or community relations. (Read more.)
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Posted in Community College (13-14). Tags: , . Comments Off on College Presidents Offer Advice to Aspiring Leaders
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