Kettering has recently begun working with college presidents to move beyond their administrative and fundraising roles and provide new leadership for civic engagement—to act as “public philosophers” for their institutions. Beginning with a meeting with a small group of college presidents in July 2015, we found that these presidents were indeed eager to take leadership on themes of democracy and civic engagement on their campuses and with their stakeholders. This blog series offers a space to gather and present their thoughts.
David Mathews is president and CEO of the Ketteirng Foundation and is a former president of University of Alabama. He has participated in Kettering’s ongoing series of exchanges with college presidents on the civic purposes of higher education. Below is Mathews' 2016 introduction to the 1977 report The Changing Agenda for American Higher Education.
After two and a half years of animated discussion and work in an ongoing research exchange with the Kettering Foundation, a group of college presidents concerned with the civic mission of higher education gathered at Denison University in Granville, Ohio, on February 15 and 16, 2018, at the invitation of Denison’s president, Adam Weinberg.