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Leading Colleges and Universities

, 328 pages

1 halftone, 1 map, 3 graphs

March 2018



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Leading Colleges and Universities

Lessons from Higher Education Leaders

Today’s college and university leaders face complex problems that test their political acumen as well as their judgment, intellect, empathy, and ability to plan and improvise. How do they thoughtfully and creatively rise to the challenge? In Leading Colleges and Universities, editors Stephen Joel Trachtenberg, Gerald B. Kauvar, and E. Gordon Gee bring together a host of presidents and other leaders in higher education who describe how they dealt with the issues.

Each contributor has been effective as a president or other significant leader in postsecondary education. In this book they share real-life examples and stories that illustrate how they have dealt with the challenges they encountered. Together they answer these and other core questions:• How do you manage college athletics, faculty, a governing board, donors, and a local community?• What do you need to know about crisis management and legal affairs?• When should you be outspoken in the media and when should you be quiet?

The book does not shy away from hot contemporary issues, tackling such controversial matters as free speech, Title IX, athletics, fraternities, student and faculty diversity, and board relations. Presidents and would-be presidents—as well as boards, search committees, state boards, legislators, and others involved in higher education—will find much helpful guidance in this timely book.

Stephen Joel Trachtenberg is the president emeritus of George Washington University and a University Professor of Public Service. Gerald B. Kauvar is the special assistant to the president emeritus and a research professor of public policy and public administration at George Washington University. Together, they are the coauthors of Presidencies Derailed: Why University Leaders Fail and How to Prevent It. E. Gordon Gee is the president of West Virginia University and the coauthor of Law, Policy, and Higher Education.

"Trachtenberg and Kauvar’s previous book shared candid stories of how even well-trained, highly talented chief executives can fail. While that book did not focus on success, this one does. Bringing together a multitude of experienced, wise, and, once again, candid leaders, this new volume offers the solutions and paths forward to overcome the challenges within any presidency."

"This book is a valuable resource for university leaders navigating this extraordinary moment in higher education. Guided by decades of personal experience, the book's editors have compiled practical reflections and thoughtful insights on a range of important topics, including shared governance and crisis management."

"Leading Colleges and Universities covers the waterfront of complexity in higher education. From building quality teams to dealing with the 24/7 news cycle, this collection of essays from leaders in the field uses their real-life experiences to inform and shape one’s thinking. For anyone stepping into a leadership role in our nation’s colleges and universities, it is a must-read."

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