ERIC Number: ED269103
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1986-Jul
Reference Count: 0
Balancing the Presidential Seesaw. Southern Association of Community and Junior Colleges Occasional Paper Volume 4, Number 2.
Vaughan, George B.
Fulfilling the role of the community college president requires that a balance be maintained between internal constituents (e.g., students, faculty, administrators, and support staff) and external constituents (e.g., politicians, members of coordinating agencies, business leaders, trustees, alumni, and special interest groups). When the president sees that this balance has been lost, he/she must apply the proper amount of pressure and exert a positive and countervailing force to right the balance as quickly, as efficiently, and as painlessly as possible. The president must also keep in mind that imbalance between internal and external constituents may be caused by positive activities, as well as negative ones. Potential dangers to institutional balance include: (1) lack of an environment in which routine matters and minor problems are handled efficiently; (2) complacency on campus as reflected by a prolonged state of institutional inactivity in areas such as governance, construction, and teaching and learning improvement; (3) the tendency of groups on either side to band together to increase their influence, thereby presenting the president with continually shifting coalitions to either pacify or render less powerful; and (4) the possibility that various constituencies will crossover to other categories or otherwise act in an unexpected manner. A classic example of the president's role in maintaining balance relates to the issue of quality versus open access, which involves not only educational questions, but political, social, and economic factors as well. In this case, as in all others, the president must ensure balance, for without it, the college can never reach its full potential. (EJV)
Descriptors: Administrative Problems, Administrator Role, College Presidents, Community Colleges, Leadership Responsibility, Leadership Styles, Organizational Effectiveness, Two Year Colleges
George B. Vaughan. Piedmont Virginia Community College, Charlottsville, VA 22901 ($3.00).
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Collected Works - Serials
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Administrators; Practitioners
Authoring Institution: Southern Association of Community and Junior Colleges.