News Release from AASCU


Contact: Jennifer Walpole 202-478-4665


WASHINGTON, D.C. — The American Association of State Colleges and Universities’ (AASCU) 2017 Annual Meeting will study the crucial role higher education plays in educating those who will serve their communities and our country and influence America’s place in a global society. Nearly 200 presidents and chancellors from across the country will attend the meeting, which will be held from Oct. 22-25, 2017, in San Diego, Calif.

The meeting’s theme—“Institutional Leaders, Mission Champions: Advocating for Our Vision and Values”—will serve as a backdrop to programming that addresses how schools can increase their reach and impact, demonstrate their value and ensure a sustainable future. 

The meeting opens on Sunday, Oct. 22, with a general session led by Jeffrey Toobin, a CNN senior analyst and staff writer for the New Yorker. This is followed by the presentation of AASCU’s Excellence and Innovation awards, which recognize and honor AASCU institutions demonstrating excellence and innovation in major areas of campus life and leadership.  

On Monday morning, two general sessions will focus on critical issues in higher education. During the first, “Opportunity and Higher Education: Lessons from Big Data,” presenter John N. Friedman from Brown University (R.I.) will discuss research on the role higher education plays in upward mobility. “Challenges to Freedom of Speech on College Campuses,” presented by Fredrick M. Lawrence, secretary and CEO of the Phi Beta Kappa Society, will address free speech’s role in democracy and on campuses.

Also on Monday, the American Academic Leadership Institute Luncheon will feature University System of Maryland Chancellor Robert L. Caret discussing the importance of reestablishing higher education’s critical leadership role in civic education, engagement and responsibility. The day concludes with a movie screening and panel for Fail State, which chronicles policy decisions that have led to a powerful for-profit college industry.

Tuesday’s programming features a general session on where demographics are changing and how presidents of public regional universities can respond. The day will also include the presentation of the Distinguished Alumnus Award to Judith Baca, activist and world-renowned muralist; the President-to-Presidents Lecture luncheon, delivered by Susan A. Cole, president of Montclair State University (N.J.); and a farewell reception and dinner for AASCU President Muriel A. Howard, who will be retiring next year. 

For additional information about the meeting, please visit  


AASCU is a Washington, D.C.-based higher education association of 400 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. These are institutions Delivering America’s Promise of Opportunities for All.