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From Survive to Thrive: Envisioning Success for College Universities


President of Kentucky Community and Technical College System

Session: Advancing Technology for Future Success:

As an educational leader, do you ever feel like you are out of the loop with how technology should be used to advance your 21st century educational mission? Are you communicating through the channels most accessed by your students, faculty, and staff? In this session, you will hear how the Kentucky Community & Technical College System (KCTCS) has applied technology in advancing student success and in expanding its communications to all constituents.


Chair of Department of Educational Leadership at Baylor University

Former President of Lee College

Session: Mitigating Future Liability in the Academy:

Learn how to practice preventive law and avoid legal trouble as best as possible. Dr. Cloud will discuss the most prevalent legal liabilities, both new and current, for colleges and universities. Ben Trachtenberg, Law Professor at the University of Missouri, will join Dr. Robert Cloud to speak about legal issues and the future of higher education.


President of Sweet Briar College

Session: Excellent, Relevant, Affordable: How Sweet Briar College Became a “Most Innovative School"

President Meredith Woo will speak to strategies and lessons learned in leading the College to a state of innovation.


President of M Square Media

Former President of Pacific Oaks College & Childrens School

Session: Pre-Conference Workshop on the Future of Recruiting: 

American universities and colleges can no longer meet their operational budgets and finance their expansions by continuing to increase their tuition. This session will address the importance of forming quality academic partnerships between American universities and private international companies for the recruitment and education of international students, generating new revenue streams, and contributing to campus diversity. American universities and colleges must consider international recruitment as part of their overall strategy for a sustainable recruitment model. We will discuss various recruitment option as a potential avenue to internationalize the campus and outline successful elements of partnership development and how they can serve the international students as well as the host higher education institution. We will also explore essential factors that result in improved retention and additional revenue streams for the host institution.


President AARP Foundation

Keynote Address: Fundraising for the Future:

Most of the problems that modern colleges and universities face come down to a lack of financial resources. Having served as the president of both a college and a charity, Ryerson offers a unique perspective on fundraising strategies in higher education. During her first year at AARP Foundation she helped procure a $3 million federal grant from the Social Innovation Fund. Ms. Ryerson will offer advice for how to adapt and expand your school’s fundraising strategies beyond mere tuition increases.


President of HEI

Keynote Address: From Survive to Thrive: Higher Education Help and Hope from Critical Pivots, Entrepreneurship, and Innovation:

Well-known Harvard University business professor Dr. Clayton Christensen has predicted and affirmed that half of all colleges in America, nearly 2000, will close in the next 10-15 years. The vast variety of colleges in the U.S. are an important part of what makes our system the best in the world. Darden believes that the demand for college degrees is as great as ever, but that there are enormous disconnects. Her talk will cover some of the critical pivot and development areas that are becoming increasingly important lifelines for colleges. Increasing revenue streams, becoming more entrepreneurial and adaptable to change, preventing and reducing cost and liability, and building more targeted and specialized partnerships and niches will be necessary to move from survive to thrive.


Vice President of Instruction at Texas Southmost College

Driving Industry Engagement through Innovative Workforce Development Practices:
Partnerships with business and industry are the cornerstone for facilitating student success in workforce programs. How does an institution provide evidence of the breadth and depth of industry engagement? Learn the three innovative workforce development practices – defining career pathways, measuring industry engagement, and assessing partnership sustainability – that Texas Southmost College has employed to drive engagement with business and industry partners.


Clinical Professor at Baylor University

Former Executive Director of Start Up Waco

Session: Adopting an Entrepreneurship Model: 

This session will be about the role of disruptive forces in higher education and the ways an entrepreneurial mindset can be adopted to create new opportunities rather than simply trying to extend business models that have become outdated. The key concepts will be drawn from Harvard professor Dr. Clayton Christensen’s work and my experience in applying them in both a corporate innovation setting and with startups.

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