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ERIC Number: ED549818
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2013-May
Pages: 5
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
Building Public Governing Board Capacity through State-Level Education Programs for College and University Board Members. State Policy Brief
Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges
State policymakers and the public at large have a vested interest in the successful governance of their higher education system. The citizens who are appointed or elected to serve as trustees and regents of the state's colleges and universities oversee valuable public assets that they hold in trust for the state and current and future generations. All appointments to governing and coordinating boards need to be made with care, and, once selected, board members need the support and resources necessary to fulfill their institutional responsibilities while serving their states and communities. Particularly, for those states with several free-standing independent governing boards for their two and four-year colleges and universities, a state-level education program can be an important strategy to build board capacity for higher education's quality and effectiveness. It is common practice for institutions and systems to provide institution-focused in-service trustee orientation and education. But the existence and frequency of state-level programs for board members and the content of such programs varies greatly. At one end of this continuum, some states, by long-standing precedent or state law, conduct annual or biannual state-level trustee education programs. At the other end of the continuum are many states that provide no opportunities for trustees to gather for educational and informational purposes, particularly in a state-wide setting. Between these two extremes are more states whose trustee-education programs tend to be scheduled irregularly, lack a clear advocate or sponsor, are insufficiently funded, and are viewed with ambivalence. Trustees and citizen board members play critical roles in higher education governance and policy making. The members of campus governing boards as well as system-level governing and state-wide coordinating boards exercise substantial fiduciary responsibility and agenda-setting roles that shape how their institutions operate and, ultimately, what they do, who they serve, and how they serve the people of the state and address the needs of the state. To help trustees and board members play more effective leadership and policy-shaping roles in addressing public needs, powerful information resources, analytic tools, and policy-setting strategies--through the Association of Governing Boards, the State Higher Education Executive Officers, the regional higher education compacts, the Midwest Higher Education Compact, the New England Board of Higher Education, the Southern Regional Education Board, and the Western Interstate Commission on Higher Education--are emerging. These resources can also provide trustees and board members with advocacy, leadership, and perspective. This state policy brief discusses goals and purposes for state trustee education programs, program and planning considerations, and additional planning considerations.
Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges. 1133 20th Street NW Suite 300, Washington, DC 20036. Tel: 800-356-6317; Tel: 202-296-8400; Fax: 202-223-7053; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: Policymakers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges (AGB), Ingram Center for Public Trusteeship and Governance