News Release from AASCU


Contact: Caitlin Reilly (202) 478-4665


Presidents Explore Solutions to New Challenges Facing the Public University

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Members attending the Association of State Colleges and Universities’ (AASCU) 2013 Annual Meeting will examine and learn how to navigate new challenges facing public higher education in the 21st century. Nearly 200 presidents and chancellors from across the country will attend the meeting in Los Angeles, Calif., which runs from Monday, October 21 – Wednesday, October 23, 2013.

The meeting’s theme, “Getting It Right: Leading the Public University of the Future,” will address a plethora of topics relating to leadership during the current phase of great transformation within higher education. Challenges addressed will include how to champion innovation on campus, contain costs and keep tuition affordable, and navigate the tension between liberal arts and career-focused education.

On Monday, October 21, Under Secretary of Education Martha J. Kanter will host a forum discussing the President’s new agenda for higher education. She will respond to questions and concerns regarding ratings, quality and education innovation, allowing AASCU presidents and chancellors to have an impact on the implementation of an important policy initiative.

During Monday’s opening luncheon, AASCU will present City University of New York, Lehman College graduate Ivan G. Seidenberg with its 2013 Distinguished Alumnus Award. Seidenberg served as chairman and CEO of Verizon Communications Inc. until his retirement in 2011. He graduated from City University of New York, Lehman College in 1972.

Also on Monday, managing director of A.T. Kearney’s Global Business Council, Erik Peterson, will address attendees on the shifting world trends that will affect higher education. He plans to touch on changes in demographics, resources, technological diffusion and geopolitics. That evening, Marina Gorbis, executive director of the Institute for the Future, will talk about the integral role of public universities in her theory of what change and innovation will look like in the future.

During the general session on Wednesday, October 23, former secretary of labor and current CNBC contributor Robert Reich will address the importance of cultivating human capital in the new economy. He will examine pressing economic issues, including job creation, management of the Baby Boomers’ imminent retirements and coping with the federal deficit.

The meeting will feature concurrent sessions covering a wide-range of topics, including the presentation of the AASCU-commissioned study on the Hispanic leadership pipeline and the important role of AASCU institutions in their regional workforces and economies.

Other meeting highlights include NPR’s Nina Totenberg’s talk on the current political landscape and issues relating to higher education being considered by the Supreme Court, Assistant Director of the Federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Rohit Chopra’s session on the aftermath of the financial crisis on higher education, and a dialogue on an emerging model of research at AASCU institutions, hosted by Rita H. Cheng, chancellor of Southern Illinois University Carbondale and Eduardo M. Ochoa, president of California State University Monterey Bay.


AASCU is a Washington-based higher education association of nearly 420 public colleges, universities and systems whose members share a learning- and teaching-centered culture, a historic commitment to underserved student populations and a dedication to research and creativity that advances their regions’ economic progress and cultural development.