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Teaching & Professional Development: Book Clubs

The Faculty Development Administrator and the Faculty Development Board announce two book clubs for the 2018-2019 academic year.

The first will focus on university shared governance and will feature the newly published and straightforwardly titled: A Practical Guide for Trustees, Faculty, Administrators, and Policy Makers: How to Run a College (John Hopkins University Press, 2018).

The Faculty Development Board invites faculty, staff, and administrators, as well as other interested groups, to participate. We are committed to providing as many free hard copies of the book as our budget allows.  

This is a practical guide about how colleges operate, including the discrete roles that faculty, administrators, and boards play. It remains optimistic that colleges like ours can thrive and makes central to its argument the positive, indeed essential, role shared governance and collaboration play in making colleges successful. 

The Faculty Development Board does not offer this suggested book reading because we believe everyone will agree with everything it says, but because we think it is an excellent launching pad for developing a shared vocabulary for discussing how a college like ours can work best. It also has the virtue of providing this shared vocabulary in relatively few words: it is only 149 pages and makes for a quick read.

But don’t take our word for it. Here are how a few others have described the book:

“How to Run a College is a refreshingly direct, highly readable, and timely critique that provides equal doses of diagnosis and prescription. Mitchell and King’s sound and balanced analyses of the challenges facing higher education are by turns insightful, provocative, and creative. There is nothing rose-tinted or apocalyptic about their scan of the higher education environment, just good common sense, wisdom and the clear compelling message that colleges and universities must have the courage to lead if they are to remain engines of social progress and intergenerational mobility."

— Eugene M. Tobin, Senior Program Officer in Higher Education and Scholarship in the Humanities, Andrew W. Mellon Foundation

“This fine book offers a full, balanced, and informed overview of American higher education. Indulging in neither denial nor fantasy, it lays out a concrete and common-sense strategy that promises a way forward. Everyone involved in running a college, from the president and trustees to faculty and alumni, would benefit from reading, and studying, How to Run a College."

— Edward L. Ayers, President Emeritus, University of Richmond, and Weinstein International Center

"Mitchell and King have given us an eminently practical and proactive guide to running a college. Drawing on observation, experience, and current research, they offer useful suggestions for change in order to help us 'imagine the possible.' With appropriate detail and perspicacity, they identify the interface where 'creativity and innovation meet management and process' and argue that this is 'where the future of higher education is born.' Let us make it so."

— Carol S. Long, Senior Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs, Willamette University

Meeting times and places:
You are expected to attend only ONE of these meeting times: 

  • Monday, December 3
    8:30-9:30 p.m.
    Winans — Upstairs Room (Great coffee available for purchase and pastries next door!)

  • Thursday, December 6
    11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
    Hollenbeck 101 Bring Your Own Lunch (will pick up cookies to share!)

  • Friday, December 7
    4:30-5:30 p.m.
    Mother Stewart’s (wonderful beer and non-alcoholic drinks available for purchase/food truck parked out front on Fridays)

Participants are free to attend any or all these proposed meeting times.

For the first meeting, please read the first five chapters of the book (83 pages). Each subsequent meeting will be determined by individual meeting groups.


The second reading group for the 2018-2019 academic year will focus on diversity and inclusion and will feature the classic, and newly revised and updated Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria? And Other Conversations about Race (Basic Books, 1996, 2017).

The glowing reviews of this classic, bestselling text on the psychology of race are too numerous to list, but the Faculty Development Board encourages you to read the attached link, where Dr. Tatum is interviewed about this book at the time of its reissuing. It provides an overview of her work, the importance of this text, and an opportunity to read directly some of her insights. Learn More...

Meeting Times and Places:
These are all the first meetings times. You are expected to attend only ONE:

  • Monday, November 12
    8:30-9:30 p.m.
    Winans — Upstairs Room (Great coffee available for purchase and pastries next door!)

  • Thursday, November 15
    11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
    Hollenbeck 101 Bring Your Own Lunch (will pick up cookies to share!)

  • Friday, November 16
    4:30-5:30 p.m.
    Mother Stewart’s (wonderful beer and non-alcoholic drinks available for purchase/food truck parked out front on Fridays)

You are free to attend any or all these proposed meeting times. Please read the new prefatory material and the first two chapters of the book for the first meeting. Subsequent meeting times will be determined by each individual meeting group.

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