Matthew P. vandenBerg

President, Presbyterian College

Matthew P. vandenBerg headshot

Matthew P. vandenBerg became Presbyterian College’s (SC) 19th president in 2021, and at the time, was one of the youngest college presidents in the nation. He previously served as vice president for advancement and external relations at Alma College. vandenBerg planned and implemented the record-setting “Our Time is Now” campaign and worked closely with the Alma community to promote economic development, facilitate community service projects and internship opportunities, and meet with elected officials. He also oversaw and designed the launch of the Alma Ambassador Program®, a branded engagement initiative designed to organize, support, and promote all types of volunteerism benefiting the college, its students, and its host community. In five years, it became the single-largest comprehensive volunteer engagement initiative among U.S. liberal arts institutions with over 5,000 participants. The Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) recognized the program with 13 awards, including the prestigious Platinum Award for Best Practices in Alumni Relations. Before his tenure at Alma College, vandenBerg served as associate vice president for development at Albion College, and as assistant dean for development and alumni relations at the Indiana University School of Informatics and Computing. Prior to his work in higher education, vandenBerg served as assistant vice president at CCS Fund Raising. He also served as a foreign policy, national defense, and immigration advisor and a spokesperson for the chairman of the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence at the U.S. House of Representatives. vandenBerg’s doctoral dissertation, “The symbiotic path to mutual value: How small, private, liberal arts institutions understand and manage donor influence,” — won the 2019 John Grenzebach Award for Outstanding Research in Philanthropy for Educational Advancement, sponsored by CASE. He has conducted and presented original research at Peking University in Beijing, China, and has published in Inside Higher Education and other outlets.  A summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Alma College, vandenBerg holds a doctorate in higher education management from the University of Pennsylvania. He also earned a MPA degree from the Indiana University School of Public and Environmental Affairs, where he concentrated in nonprofit management and public policy analysis.