According to the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee, more than 75 percent of U.S. athletes participating in the Tokyo 2020 Olympics (held July 23–August 8, 2021, due to the pandemic) competed in the American collegiate system. Team USA included current and former students from 15 CIC member institutions: Ashland University (OH), Baylor University (TX), Campbellsville University (KY), Connecticut College, Eckerd College (FL), Ithaca College (NY), King University (TN), Livingstone College (NC), Marian University (IN), Milligan University (TN), Missouri Baptist University, Pepperdine University (CA), Texas Christian University, University of the Pacific (CA), and Wayland Baptist University (TX).
In June, Diverse: Issues in Higher Education published the list of 2021 Most Promising Places to Work in Student Affairs. This national recognition—commissioned by the American College Personnel Association and Diverse—celebrates student affairs workplaces that are vibrant, diverse, supportive, and committed to professional development, inclusive excellence, and staff work- life balance. Of the 30 institutions listed, four are CIC members: Bellarmine University (KY), Elon University (NC), Holy Names University (CA), and Rider University (NJ).
In June, the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) announced its 2021 Circle of Excellence Awards winners. The awards honor institutions worldwide whose staff have advanced their organizations through resourcefulness and ingenuity. Winners are selected based on factors such as overall quality, innovation, use of resources, and the impact of the institution on its external and internal communities. Twenty-four CIC member institutions are among those recognized: American University of Beirut (Lebanon), Arcadia University (PA), Bellarmine University (KY), Berea College (KY), Bucknell University (PA), California Lutheran University, Campbell University (NC), Cedarville University (OH), College of Saint Rose (NY), Connecticut College, Gallaudet University (DC), Georgian Court University (NJ), Kalamazoo College (MI), Kenyon College (OH), Lesley University (MA), Madonna University (MI), Norwich University (VT), Oberlin College (OH), Olivet Nazarene University (IL), Point Loma Nazarene University (CA), Roberts Wesleyan College (NY), Swarthmore College (PA), University of Richmond (VA), and Ursinus College (PA).
This spring, Alverno College (WI) was awarded the 2021 Trudy W. Banta Lifetime Achievement in Assessment Award. The national award has previously only been given to individuals, making Alverno the first institution to receive it. The award will be presented at the 2021 Assessment Institute, hosted by Indiana University–Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) in October. The institute is the oldest and largest U.S. higher education event focused on assessment and improvement.
In May, the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs designated 20 historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) as this year’s annual Fulbright HBCU Institutional Leaders, recognizing their noteworthy engagement with the Fulbright Program in 2019–2020. Four of the 20 institutions recognized are CIC members: Morehouse College (GA), Spelman College (GA), Tougaloo College (MS), and Xavier University of Louisiana.
The Harry S. Truman Scholarship Foundation announced the 62 college students from 51 U.S. colleges and universities who were selected as 2021 Truman Scholars. The Truman Scholarship is the premier graduate scholarship for aspiring public service leaders in the United States; the scholars demonstrate outstanding leadership potential, a commitment to a career in government or the nonprofit sector, and academic excellence. Seven of the scholars are from CIC member institutions: Sarah Beisner and Destiny Magnett of Grinnell College (IA), Sophie Cardin of Colorado College, Daud Mumin of Westminster College (UT), Iesha-LaShay Phillips of Oberlin College (OH), Makaila Ranges of Franklin & Marshall College (IN), and Klarke Stricklen of Sewanee: The University of the South (TN).
The White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities announced in August its eighth cohort of HBCU Scholars. The program recognizes students for their accomplishments in academics, leadership, and civic and campus engagement; the scholars serve as ambassadors for the initiative and participate in related programs. This year, 33 of 86 scholars selected are from 21 CIC member institutions: Allen University (SC); Benedict College (SC); Bennett College (NC); Clark Atlanta University (GA); Dillard University (LA); Edward Waters University (FL); Florida Memorial University; Jarvis Christian College (TX); Johnson C. Smith University (SC); Lane College (TN); Livingstone College (NC); Morehouse College (GA); Oakwood University (AL); Philander Smith College (AR); Rust College (MS); Shaw University (NC); Spelman College (GA); Stillman College (AL); Talladega College (TX); Voorhees College (SC); and Xavier University of Louisiana.
In June, five Virginia institutions—Bridgewater College, Hollins University, Randolph-Macon College, Shenandoah University, and Virginia Commonwealth University— received the 2021 GoAbroad Innovation Award for Innovation in Diversity for their Black+Abroad initiative. The GoAbroad Innovation Awards celebrate institutions, organizations, and individuals moving the study abroad field forward. The Black+Abroad program aims to curate a space for Black students to share their thoughts, questions, and reservations about travel and study abroad by engaging in conversation and storytelling with experienced travelers, study abroad alumni of color, and education abroad advisers.
More than 35 colleges and universities took part in the nation’s largest deliberative democracy event for students—the “Shaping Our Future” virtual polling event hosted by Stanford University and the Berggruen Institute in May. The two-day program was designed to capture what a diverse group of young people would think about important public policy issues after having an opportunity to listen to and learn from others. The event used a structured deliberation model called Deliberative Polling and brought together more than 1,500 students. Participating CIC member institutions included Centre College (KY), Emory & Henry College (VA), Spelman College (GA), and Sewanee: The University of the South (TN).
Students, faculty members, and community volunteers from 13 colleges and universities across Virginia took to the streets in July to collect data about how heat varies across communities as part of a statewide effort to understand where residents are most at risk during extreme heat waves. Participating institutions included Bridgewater College, Emory & Henry College, Hampden-Sydney College, Hollins University, Marymount University, Randolph College, Roanoke College, Shenandoah University, Sweet Briar College, University of Lynchburg, University of Richmond, Virginia State University, and Virginia Wesleyan University. Data from the Heat Watch project will inform many projects, such as public health, energy efficiency, climate change mitigation, emergency preparedness, equity and social justice, community partnerships, and student engagement initiatives.
Hilbert College (NY) launched international exchange partnerships with six institutions in Europe this fall. The one- semester exchange programs, open to undergraduate students and faculty members at Hilbert and at the participating institutions, include agreements with Leonardo De Vinci University in France, Mykolas Romeris University in Lithuania, Brookins Business Institute in Luxembourg, Vistula University in Poland, University of Fernando Pessoa in Portugal, and Romanian- American University in Romania.
Webster University (MO) and PSB Academy, one of Singapore’s leading private education institutions, signed a memorandum of understanding this spring to explore collaboration opportunities. Webster and PSB Academy intend to develop and deliver undergraduate and postgraduate programs in Singapore, including cybersecurity and business management courses.
Franciscan University of Steubenville (OH) and Walsh University (OH) recently signed two agreements that will address the need for skilled rehabilitative care professionals in occupational and physical therapy and help their students save time and money. Beginning this fall, the cooperative programs will offer students a path to complete a bachelor’s degree at Franciscan University and a master’s degree in occupational therapy at Walsh University in six years and an accelerated path to complete a bachelor’s degree at Franciscan and a doctorate degree in physical therapy at Walsh also in six years.
Culver-Stockton College (MO) and Westminster College (MO) established a partnership to offer a 3+2 accelerated master of athletic training (MAT) program beginning this fall. Westminster exercise science students can now complete three years of undergraduate courses on their campus and then seamlessly matriculate into Culver-Stockton’s MAT program, which will include clinical experiences in both athletic and hospital settings.
Concordia University Chicago (IL) and Dominican University (IL) launched a joint cybersecurity governance certificate program this fall to prepare students for the rapidly advancing information technology field. The online program will be taught by instructors at both universities. The certificate is offered as an added credential for post-baccalaureate or post-master’s degree students, as well as for students currently pursuing master’s degrees in library and information science, information management, and business.
The University of Holy Cross (LA) and Delgado Community College recently signed articulation agreements between their health science departments, making it easier for students to transfer credits from Delgado to UHC. Beginning this fall, Delgado students who complete an associate of applied science degree in radiologic technology will have the opportunity to transfer those credit hours and apply them toward completion of a BS degree in health sciences at UHC. In addition, a new 2+2 program will enable students who complete Delgado’s associate of applied science degree in respiratory care technology to transfer as juniors into UHC’s BS in health sciences program for respiratory therapists.
The Appalachian College Association (ACA) and Credo Higher Education have partnered to create a cohort of independent campuses that will work both individually and collectively to improve student outcomes. After the first cohort, which includes Bluefield University (VA) and Carson-Newman University (TN), began its work last year, the second cohort, including Davis & Elkins College (WV), Emory & Henry College (VA), and Averett University (VA), will begin this fall. Under the Moving the Needle project, these cohorts of ACA institutions will research their student retention challenges and opportunities, identify the most promising areas to boost student outcomes, and implement strategies for success.
The Washington Center for Internships and Academic Seminars (TWC) and Elon University (NC) established a school of record partnership that took effect this fall. The partnership enables students from colleges and universities that are not affiliated with TWC to receive an Elon University transcript for up to 15 academic credit hours when they complete TWC’s Academic Internship Program. Previously, only students enrolled in an institution affiliated with TWC could receive academic credit.
Centre College’s (KY) Center for Global Citizenship and the Center for Career and Professional Development established a partnership with Global Experiences Virtuoso to provide students with virtual international internship opportunities. This spring, 26 Centre students began virtually interning in Costa Rica, England, Ireland, Italy, and Spain. Through the internships, the students conduct research, create materials, support event planning, apply for grants, write analyses, and provide sales support for organizations all over the world.
In June, Judson University’s (IL) Demoss Center for Worship in the Performing Arts formed an exclusive partnership with Dark Horse Recording/Dark Horse Institute of Franklin, Tennessee, one of the world’s premier recording studios. According to the agreement, Judson’s senior music business and entrepreneurship students will spend their final semester in Nashville, taking classes at Dark Horse Institute and connecting with major music-industry performers. Judson’s music business seniors will take one of three tracks at the Institute: audio engineering, music business, or songwriting and composition.
Rider University (NJ) and Saxbys have formed a partnership to introduce an exclusively student-run café to campus this fall. The café will be located in Sweigart Hall, home to Rider’s Norm Brodsky College of Business, and run via the Saxbys Experiential Learning Platform. Each semester, Saxbys will employ an undergraduate student as a student cafe executive officer who will run and manage all aspects of the café. In addition to earning a competitive wage and bonuses, the student also will receive a full semester of college credit.
A collaboration between Gannon University (PA) and several entities including La Sierra University (CA) and the Department of State has developed the Madaba Digital Documentation and Tourism Project that launched in May. The project, “One Place, Many Stories,” aims to foster greater appreciation and protection for Jordan’s cultural heritage by showcasing the connection between community members and their local heritage. The program provides training in 3D documentation and storytelling to members of the local community, empowering them to share their perspectives through an interactive web-based experience.
Major Gifts, Grants, and Campaign Successes
In May, Wofford College (SC) completed its six-year, $300 million comprehensive campaign with gifts and pledges totaling more than $470 million, one year ahead of schedule. The “For Wofford” campaign will fund five new buildings, the renovation and improvement of several other facilities, and 189 new endowed scholarships and funding to support experiential learning and campus renovations.
This summer, Bucknell University (PA) received a pledge of more than $40 million from 1958 alumnus Michael Pascucci. Of this, $30 million will support unrestricted, need- based financial aid through the Pascucci Family Scholarship, and over $10 million will fund improvements in and around Christy Mathewson–Memorial Stadium. In the spring, Bucknell also received a $6 million gift from 1981 graduate Glen Tullman. The donation will support three initiatives: $3 million to endow the newly named Douglas K. Candland Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences; $2.5 million to establish the Douglas K. Candland Fund for Civic Action; and $500,000 to endow the Animal Behavior Program. Candland is a retired psychology and animal behavior professor who was Tullman’s mentor at Bucknell.
In May, Connecticut College received the largest philanthropic gift in its history: $30 million from 1988 alumnus Robert Hale and his wife, Karen. The gift will provide $10 million for financial aid, $10 million for improvements to campus infrastructure, and $10 million for athletics, all areas significantly affected by the pandemic. The Hales also gave the college $20 million in 2015.
Colorado College announced in April a $33.5 million estate gift from an anonymous donor. The commitment will support future needs of the college and provide funding for the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center at Colorado College.
Hampden-Sydney College (VA) announced receipt of a $12 million gift from the estate of the late Sarah (Lucile) and M. Blair Dickinson Jr. (1937) in April. The Dickinsons were both World War II veterans and educators with a lifelong devotion to education and to Hampden-Sydney College.
Ashland University (OH) received a $10 million gift from long-time supporters Bob and Jan Archer in April. Most of the gift will fund four-year scholarships for Ashland students, including those enrolled in the Ashbrook Center and the Ashland Theological Seminary. The gift also will support student-retention initiatives, athletics, marketing, and capital improvements.
After receiving the largest endowment gift in its history—$10 million from the Williams family—Elon University (NC) has named the university’s school of education in honor of vice president emerita Jo Watts Williams (1955), a legendary educator and administrator who has been associated with her alma mater for more than 75 years. The gift came from her sons William (Lee) Williams III and his wife, Beth, through the Beth and Lee Williams Foundation, and Randall Williams and his wife, Elizabeth. The gift will create an endowment to support students, faculty members, the administration, and community partnerships.
In June, Google announced grants to ten HBCUs totaling $50 million. The grants are designed to help expand pathways and opportunities for increased diverse representation in the STEM industry and will support scholarships, technical infrastructure for in-class and remote learning, and curriculum and career support programs. Among the ten institutions receiving $5 million each are Claflin University (SC), Clark Atlanta University (GA), Spelman College (GA), Tuskegee University (AL), and Xavier University of Louisiana.
An anonymous donor committed a $5 million gift to Salem College (NC) in the spring to support its Health Leadership transformation—a model that will make it the only liberal arts institution specifically focused on elevating and expanding the role of women in health leadership. The donor made the gift in honor of Lucy Rose, a 1976 Salem College graduate who is one of the driving forces behind the college’s new focus.
Mary Baldwin University (VA) recently announced that Richmond philanthropists Mr. and Mrs. William H. Goodwin, Jr. pledged $5 million to support the expansion of the Murphy Deming College of Health Sciences. The gift will provide funding for the new doctor of nursing practice hybrid degree program that MBU began in August.
A $5 million commitment to Kalamazoo College (MI) from emeriti trustees Rosemary and John Brown will create an endowed scholarship fund. The Browns are longtime supporters of Kalamazoo. Rosemary is a lifelong educator who taught math in schools in Kalamazoo and New Jersey; John is chair emeritus of Stryker Corporation, a Kalamazoo-based company that develops medical devices and surgical equipment.
This spring, Coker University (SC) received $5 million in funding from two family foundations within the Hartsville, South Carolina, area. The grants will support a number of university projects including new programs in business and health sciences, renovated science labs, outdoor athletic facilities, a new career services center, and improvements to Coker’s iconic Davidson Hall.
Fisk University (TN) announced in June a $3 million donation from Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP. The gift will support infrastructural improvements to classroom and learning spaces, including Jubilee Hall, the oldest permanent structure on any HBCU campus. The law firm’s relationship with Fisk dates back to the university’s founding during Reconstruction.
In May, Loras College (IA) reported the receipt of a $2 million estate gift from Robert A. “Bob” Holtz. The contribution will augment an endowed scholarship fund already established in his name. Holtz was a lifelong Delaware County resident who farmed near Greeley, Iowa, and helped more than 60 students attend Loras College over the past 20 years. Loras will name its advancement suite the Bob Holtz Advancement Suite.
Elizabethtown College (PA) received $3.5 million in gifts and commitments toward diversity and inclusion efforts, cultural and performing arts, and student scholarships this spring. The bulk of the support came from Joan Puchaty, a friend of the college who established a trust exceeding $1.5 million through her estate, which will benefit the college’s cultural and performing arts. In addition, Joseph A. and Nancy DePippo, graduates from the class of 1976 and 1979, respectively, pledged more than $1 million to support a scholarship to benefit U.S. citizens of color who demonstrate financial need.
Philander Smith College (AR) closed out approximately $80,000 of outstanding balances held by graduates in the classes of 2020 and 2021. Philander Smith College President Roderick L. Smothers, Sr., made the surprise announcement during commencement ceremonies on May 8. Along with donations made by the college’s alumni and other private gifts, Philander Smith received a $54,000 grant from the Jack and Jill Foundation’s College GAP Fund in support of this effort.
This fall, Hope College (MI) launched a pilot of a new financial model that will eventually fully fund tuition for every student who is admitted to Hope. The college-wide strategy, “Hope Forward,” is built on a foundation of three pillars— accessibility, generosity, and community—and uses a “pay-it- forward” approach. Hope Forward students will invest after, not before, they receive a Hope education—and in turn send the same opportunity forward to future students.
New Institutes, Programs, and Majors
Anderson University (SC) has launched a doctor of education program in leadership and learning designed to prepare working professionals to lead, teach, and consult in the public and private sectors. The program will offer two concentrations—in school and community leadership and in curriculum and instructional leadership—and will be offered in a Hyflex format that offers in- person learning or a fully online experience.
Newman University (KS) will launch its first two doctoral programs in spring 2022. Offered through the school of business and using a scholar-practitioner model, the doctor of business administration program will provide experienced professionals and academics with advanced skills and credentials in business beyond the MBA. Offered through the School of Nursing and Allied Health, the doctor of nurse anesthesia program is designed for baccalaureate-prepared registered nurses who wish to become a certified registered nurse anesthetist.
Hilbert College (NY) recently established a new online division: Hilbert College Global. In addition to Hilbert’s recently launched online graduate programs, Hilbert College Global will offer several undergraduate degree programs: liberal studies (BS), digital media and communications (BA), psychology (BA), business management (BS), criminal justice (BS), cybersecurity (BS), liberal arts (AA), and business administration (AAS).
The Robert Morris University (PA) School of Informatics, Humanities, and Social Sciences recently added nine new bachelor’s degree programs. Beginning this fall, three of the programs will be offered through the Department of Arts and Humanities: BA and BFA degrees in cinema and photography; BA and BFA degrees in graphic design; and a BA degree in user experience/user interface (UX/UI) design. Four of the programs will be offered through the Department of Communication and Organizational Leadership: a BA in news and sports communication; a BA in public relations and advertising; a BA in strategic communication; and a BA in professional writing.
This fall, Palm Beach Atlantic University (FL) created a new College of the Arts by merging the School of Music and Fine Art and the School of Communications and Media; the union allows the college to maximize resources and makes it easier for arts students to double major. In addition to the many degree programs already in place, the College of the Arts will add four new bachelor of fine arts degrees—in cinema, dance, graphic design, and theatre.
Saint Leo University (FL) recently broke new ground among American colleges and universities by creating the first undergraduate degree devoted to veteran studies. The Saint Leo major was created to allow students the opportunity to study the veteran experience—including the distinctive lives and cultures formed by military service and by retirement from service—a part of American culture that is not well understood.
New and Recently Renovated Facilities
In July, Oakwood University (AL) held a ceremony to celebrate the completion of the renovation of Peterson Hall. The building, originally constructed in 1955, has been completely renovated to include residential use as well as a full conference center. The Peterson Hall and University Conference Center now includes 52 private rooms, four suites, meeting rooms, an auditorium, a business center, and an exercise room.
Berry College (GA) opened its new state-of-the-art animal science building this summer. Housing the college’s largest major, the $15.7 million, 23,000-square-foot facility will enhance teaching and research in animal health and production, including genetics, microbiology, and physiology. The building is connected to the School of Mathematical and Natural Sciences, bringing students in scientific disciplines together and promoting collaboration in areas such as One Health, which explores the interconnectedness of human, animal, and environmental health.
St. Thomas Aquinas College (NY) officially opened the fully renovated Naughton Hall, new home of the Admissions Welcome Center, in July. The center features a state-of-the-art conference room, meeting rooms, and outdoor campus spaces, with a dedicated entrance gate and ample parking for prospective students, families, and guests.
Name Changes and Campus Transitions
Several CIC member institutions officially changed their names this spring and summer. Piedmont College (GA) officially became Piedmont University on April 9, and Morningside College (IA) became Morningside University on June 1. Effective July 1, Converse College (SC) became Converse University, and Edward Waters College (FL) became Edward Waters University. Bluefield College (VA) officially changed its name to Bluefield University on August 18.
Moravian College (PA) officially changed its name to Moravian University on July 1. That same month, Moravian Theological Seminary (part of Moravian University) and Lancaster Theological Seminary received formal approval to begin to combine the two seminaries. Each will teach its current degree and certificate program curricula during the 2021–2022 academic year; the process of full consolidation is expected to take several years.
This spring, Gwynedd Mercy University (PA) and Saint Charles Borromeo Seminary signed an agreement that will allow the seminary to relocate to Gwynedd Mercy’s campus. The university and seminary will share a campus but remain two separate and distinct institutions. The Maguire Foundation provided a $3 million gift to Gwynedd Mercy to supplement the $10 million purchase price by the seminary.
In July, Saint Leo University (FL) and Marymount California University announced an agreement to merge the two institutions. The agreement will unite the two Catholic institutions together under the Saint Leo University name, helping to build upon their historic missions, expand academic and co-curricular programming, and increase geographic offerings for students.
Willamette University (OR) and the Pacific Northwest College of Art (PNCA) finalized their merger in June. PNCA students will now have access to the breadth of curricular offerings at Willamette and benefit from its proximity to policymaking and government in Salem, while Willamette students will benefit from the arts and design offerings provided by PNCA and the culture and creativity in Portland. Pacific Northwest will be a college within Willamette University and will retain its name, faculty, and Portland campus.
Note: This issue of Campus Update includes news that colleges and universities reported from April through July 2021. Because the coronavirus epidemic continues to affect campus operations, institutions may have adjusted their operations and plans since then.