Stewarding the Presidency
I am serving in my 13th year as the president of Central College in Pella, Iowa—my 40th year in higher education.
While I certainly have presidential colleagues who have equaled or exceeded my years of leadership service, I have become increasingly concerned by the number of public and private institutions that have appointed as many as four presidents during the dozen years I have been in this role. My intent is not to argue that all college and university presidential appointments could or should be long-term. My concern is that the accelerating turnover rate across the postsecondary landscape is only breeding more turnover. When an institution becomes accustomed to frequent presidential transitions, commitment to sustained leadership erodes.
Originally published: November 29, 2022
Author: Mark Putnam
Institution: Central College
Published by: Inside Higher Ed