Leading insights for higher education governance.

Trusteeship magazine reports trends, issues, and practices in higher education to help board members and chief executives better understand their distinctive and complementary roles and to strengthen board performance. It is published bimonthly for AGB members.

May/June 2020 | Volume 28, Number 3


Colleges at a Crossroads: Closures, Affiliations, and Mergers

By David Tobenkin

As competition for students increases due to changing demographics of the traditional college-age population, some colleges and universities have closed or merged with other institutions. Boards of trustees that find their higher education institutions in a financial position that seems unsustainable long term may have to make a decision to close their campus or affiliate or merge with another.

No, It’s Not Just the Enrollment Crisis—It’s Also Time to Modify Our Learning Paradigm

By Larry Shinn

Those providing leadership for colleges and universities in the United States are facing increasingly complex and unrelenting challenges. The urgency and magnitude of these external forces require holistic, well-informed, strategic thinking, and decision making by trustees, administrators, and faculty—collaborating together—that can produce truly innovative solutions.

The 2019–2020 Nason Award Winners: Six Boards that Go the Extra Mile Earned AGB’s Laurels

By Christopher Connell

AGB honors the six winners of the 2019–2020 AGB John W. Nason Award for Board Leadership, an honor for boards who have demonstrated backbone, foresightedness, and determination in fulfilling their role as the financial stewards of their institution’s future as well as their current course.

Going Virtual Fast and Well: 12 Steps to an Efficient Virtual Board Meeting 

By Cathy Trower

The pandemic has forced many to adapt quickly. This includes boards moving from face-to-face to virtual meetings. This article offers advice to move board meetings into virtual settings quickly and efficiently.

Commencements Go Virtual

By Charlotte West

As it became clear that most colleges and universities won’t reopen their campuses before fall due to the coronavirus pandemic, senior leadership at institutions around the country faced the difficult decision of whether to cancel their traditional graduation ceremonies. Many campuses are turning to virtual commencements to celebrate the class of 2020, with plans to hold in-person events later in the year.


On My Agenda 
By Henry Stoever 
Strategic Board Leadership in a Time of Crisis

News in Brief 
A sampling of national higher education news  

Legal Standpoint 
By Steve Dunham 
Myths about Lawyers

By Patrice Harris
Coordinated Response to Coronavirus Offers Best Path Forward

Focus on the Presidency 
By Mary Cullinan
How Do We Meet Our Mission during a Pandemic?

View from the Board Chair 
By Claudia Puig
Adaptability Fosters Resilience

Inside AGB  

  • AGB Assists Boards with COVID-19
  • New Books Forthcoming from AGB
  • Upcoming Webinars

A Question For Martha Johnson
How Did the Coronavirus Pandemic Impact Students Studying Abroad?