Conference on Higher Education at University of Virginia to Focus on Policy Reform, National Education Goals

June 3, 2008 — On June 9, the University of Virginia's Miller Center of Public Affairs and the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges will host a conference, "Examining the National Purposes of American Higher Education: A Leadership Approach to Policy Reform." The gathering, to be held at the Miller Center (see schedule below), will convene elected leaders, trustees and state higher education and college executives to explore how education leaders and policymakers can prepare for changing definitions, goals, and priorities in American higher education.
Their objectives:

• To discuss how higher education has responded to demands to more productively and efficiently educate the population, especially in the disciplines related to economic development and international competitiveness;

• To analyze the reasons why some have succeeded and others have failed to achieve the desired outcomes;

• To identify leadership models at both the state and national levels to significantly improve outcomes.

"This important meeting will help to strengthen the partnership between higher education and state government," said Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges President Richard Legon. "Through it we can find ways for both to work together to create and sustain effective governance and higher education leadership, which will better meet the needs of people and their communities. AGB is pleased to sponsor such a significant event in partnership with the Miller Center."

"As the debate continues to determine if higher education is more a 'public good' or 'private benefit,' clearer connections must be established with societal progress," said Gerald L. Baliles, director of the Miller Center. "Also, educational leaders must persuade policymakers to respond accordingly. Our conference, with representatives from more than 20 states and many aspects of higher education, is designed to contribute to this effort."

The Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges is the only national association that serves the interests and needs of academic governing boards, boards of institutionally related foundations, and campus CEOs and other senior-level campus administrators on issues related to higher education governance and leadership. It strengthens and protects the United States' unique form of institutional governance through its research, services and advocacy, and is committed to citizen trusteeship of American higher education.
The program will be webcast live and archived at

Conference details and materials, including white papers, will also be at For information, contact Mike Mullen at 434-243-8978 or

Monday,  June 9, 2008

* Each session will be held in the Miller Center Forum Room unless otherwise specified.

8:30 a.m. — Welcome, introductions and opening plenary session
• Gov. Gerald L. Baliles, director of the Miller Center of Public Affairs, former governor of Virginia
• Richard Legon, president of the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges

9:15 a.m. — "Higher Education Governance Broadly Defined and Examined"
• James Duderstadt, president emeritus and University Professor of Science and Engineering at the University of Michigan
• Respondent: David Breneman, Newton and Rita Meyers Professor in Economics of Education and director of the BA/MPP Program in Public Policy, former dean of the Curry School of Education, University of Virginia
• Moderator: Gordon Davies, former director of State Council of Higher Education for Virginia

10:45 a.m.  — "Addressing the Public Agenda"
• Gordon Davies
• Respondent: Reggie Robinson, president, Kansas Board of Regents
• Moderator: Peter Blake, vice chancellor for workforce development, Virginia Community College System

1:15 p.m. — "Building Board Capacity to Address Key Challenges"
• Richard Legon
• Paul Lingenfelter, president of the State Higher Education Executive Office
• Respondent: Andrea Loughry, vice chair of the University of Tennessee Board of Trustees
 Moderator: Susan Cole, president of Montclair State University, New Jersey

2:30 p.m. — Seeking Solutions
• Darryl Greer, executive director of the New Jersey Association of State Colleges and Universities
• Brit Kirwan, chancellor of the University System of Maryland
• Jim McCormick, chancellor of Minnesota State Colleges and Universities

4 p.m. — Group reports
• Facilitator: Mark Musick, president emeritus of the Southern Regional Education Board

5 p.m. — Afternoon break & light reception       
Scripps Library, Miller Center of Public Affairs

5:45 p.m. — Adoption of preliminary report & recommendations
• Presenter/Facilitator: Gordon Davies

6:15 p.m. — Adjournment / tour of the Miller Center of Public Affairs