Trusteeship: May/June 2024

Volume 32,  Number 3   //    May/June 2024

Table of Contents


Cover Story

Artificial Intelligence and the Future of Higher Education, Part 2
By David Tobenkin

This is the second of a two-part series on the impact of artificial intelligence (AI) on colleges and universities. The first part of this series, “Artificial Intelligence and the Future of Higher Education,” published in the January/February 2024 issue of Trusteeship, examined the increasing prevalence of AI applications in higher education instruction, research, and institutional operations. It noted these AI impacts on higher ed institutions. This story, Part 2, builds on Part 1 by discussing what boards should be doing to realize AI’s potential and address its challenges at their institutions.


A Nation at Risk
By David Maxwell

For decades, higher education as a sector has had the resilience, ingenuity, and persistence to thrive in the face of a variety of challenges. In recent years, however, higher education’s core principles of academic freedom and institutional autonomy have come under sustained assault in ways that threaten our collective ability to serve the nation in producing the informed citizens essential to a civil democracy, advancing knowledge, and driving economic development. It is essential that trustees step up to protect their institutions from this assault, and to participate as rational and informed voices defending the essential value of higher education in the public discourse.

The 2024 Nason Award Honorees: Four Boards That Made a Difference
By Christopher Connell

Each year, AGB honors higher education boards that have demonstrated board excellence. These are the four recipients of the 2023–2024 AGB John W. Nason Award for Board Leadership, an honor for trustees who have demonstrated backbone, foresightedness, and determination in fulfilling their role as the financial stewards of their institutions’ future as well as their current course.

Optimism Bias: How It Can Impact Decision Making on Boards
By Mike Bills

Sometimes trustees are overly optimistic about the colleges and universities they serve. Unfortunately, optimism bias can impact board decisions. It is crucial for trustees to understand the role optimism bias plays in decision making to ensure that they make the best decisions in the boardroom for their institutions.

Departments and Columns

On My Agenda
The Year We Take a Stand
By Ellen-Earle Chaffee

News in Brief
A Sampling of National Higher Education News

Inside AGB

Legal Standpoint
Finding the Guideposts for Free Speech on Campus
By David Fine

The Presidential Residence: Can this House Be a Home?
By Kevin P. Reilly

Foundations of Consequence
The Role of Advocacy and Community Relations for Foundation Boards
By Robert J. Nava and Lou Monville

Focus on the Presidency
Unions and Students
By Tania Tetlow

View from the Board Chair
North Dakota State Board of Higher Education Leading Efforts to Address the State Workforce
By Tim Mihalick

A Question for Ann Obermann
How Should Boards Engage Faculty Trustees?

Cover Illustration: Kevin Fales