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Resource roundup: Social media management

           
         

With the right resources, it is possible to run successful social media campaigns without hiring a full-time social media marketer.

   

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Steps for effective board recruitment

           
         

How do you go about finding new board members? It’s not as easy as asking friends if they want to serve.

   

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What are a board's top concerns?

           
         

What are the top concerns for the future of higher education as identified by board members serving at private, nonprofit colleges and universities across the United States?

   

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The ministry of fundraising

           
         

I once heard it said that board members find fundraising to be the least appetizing of their responsibilities. Few people are comfortable asking another for money, but without fundraising, few of our theological schools would survive.

   

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How (and why) to do board assessment

           
         

As part of the ongoing work of the In Trust Center’s Wise Stewards Initiative, participating schools are completing board self-assessments, which their faculty coaches are using to create board development plans. Conducting a board assessment is something that every school should consider doing.

   

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Resource roundup: Institutional financial health

           
         

The fiscal responsibilities of seminary boards, presidents, and administrators are vast and complex. And for those who want to maintain or improve their school’s financial health, it's sometimes hard to know where to start. Here are resources that may offer some guidance in tending to institutional financial health.

   

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Diversifying your board

           
         

As the diversity of students entering theological schools continues to grow, many school leaders are challenged with mirroring that diversity within their administration, faculty, and board. 

   

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Questioning tenure

           
         

At some point every board member will hear arguments for and against tenure, the policy that has been called “the most sacred cow munching on the ivy that covers the towers of academia.”

   

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College-age population expected to decline dramatically

           
         

The number of college-age young people is predicted to fall by more than 15 percent within the next decade. The potential effects on theological education are obvious — and daunting.

   

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Strategy is still the issue

           
         

Back in 2012, Christa Klein, then president of In Trust, spoke with Robert Cooley, “the guru of governance,” on the question of strategy and the rapidly changing landscape of theological education. Their conversation remains relevant today.

   

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Leveraging the power of Facebook

           
         

By now, we all know the vast reach that Facebook has across the globe, and many are aware of how powerful a tool Facebook can be for nonprofits and educational institutions to engage with constituents and potential donors.

   

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The right school, the right time, and the right CFO

           
         

How does a school find the chief financial officer (CFO) it needs?

   

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Your top strategic issues

           
         

When your board meets, how much time do you spend focusing on strategic issues facing your school? If the answer is less than half of the meeting time, then your board is like many others. 

   

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In Trust Center board of directors election results

           
         

The leaders of member schools of the In Trust Center for Theological Schools recently cast ballots to elect one new member and re-elect one continuing member of the Center’s board of directors.

   

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Resource roundup: Assessing institutional culture

           
         

How do your faculty, staff, and administrators experience the culture of your institution? Knowing the answer can help you make improvements that result in lasting benefits and contribute in significant ways to your school’s success.

   

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Communicating hope amid disruption

           
         

The illustration and type on the cover of Fuller Seminary's magazine pretty much says it all. Rather than an evocative photographic portrait, as usually graces the cover, this one sports a photoshopped bird – gold and in flight – which forms the first “I” in the 200-point Century Bold italicized title that reads: DIS RUP TION.

   

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Visualizing governance systems

           
         

The dashboard of a car can tell you a lot — fuel level, speed, air temperature, tire pressure. The one thing it can’t tell you is where you’re going. For that we need another metaphor. Randall Basinger at Messiah College has just the thing: GPS, or governance positioning system.

   

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Seminary classes in churches: creative experiments and tough questions

           
         

 

Is theological education for everyone — or only for those with special vocations? That question is not new. Nor is it new for seminary classes to be held in church basements in order to bring education closer to the people in the pews. Yet it’s worth repeating that seminaries are continuing to experiment with bringing theological education to untapped audiences. One of these new-yet-old experiments is “taking seminary to church” — holding seminary courses in congregational settings with regular church-goers invited to learn along with officially enrolled seminarians.

   

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A challenge to find the time

           
         

A recent informal survey conducted by In Trust found that of the 92 seminary presidents and chief executives who replied, 24 percent had taken a sabbatical. Both those who had and those who hadn’t said that it was hard to find the time to take the leave that they had been granted. In Trust followed up with telephone interviews with several presidents and found that they had worked with their boards to create a wide variety of arrangements.

   

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The value of interim presidents

           
         

The Autumn 2018 issue of In Trust magazine includes an interview with William Crothers, interim president at Ashland Theological Seminary. Crothers has served as an interim CEO five times since he retired in 2002 as ninth president of Roberts Wesleyan College. He was happy to share with In Trust readers some of the wisdom that he’s gleaned over the years.

   

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Nontraditional presidents must exercise “enterprise leadership”

           
         

 

In Trust recently published an article titled “Promising Professor vs. Prominent Pastor,” which pointed out that most theological schools hire CEOs who have moved up through the faculty ranks, while a third hire CEOs from leadership positions in their denomination or from the business world.

   

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The cost of free speech

           
         

Freedom of speech is a big deal on university campuses these days. A recent spate of decisions by university administrators to permit (or forbid) various speakers to make speeches on campus has generated newsworthy controversy. Invariably, free-speech advocates argue that a university is a place for learning, critical thinking, and critical listening. Silencing an offensive viewpoint.

   

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Difficult but necessary decisions

           
         

“The board has to insist on financial sustainability.” Lee Merritt, retired vice president for finance at Fuller Theological Seminary, sees this obligation as one of the most essential responsibilities of any school’s governing board.

 

   

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Tending shared governance

           
         

“Effective shared governance is hard work.” That’s how a new article focusing on shared governance in this month’s Trusteeship magazine begins. This is no surprise to anyone familiar with the practice of shared governance, but it’s certainly nice to read the words and appreciate that others struggle with the practice too.

   

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Why do university presidents lose their jobs?

           
         

In a recent article in Inside Higher Ed, William G. Tierney, professor at the University of Southern California, posits the question of why university presidents resign or are fired. Using examples of recent high-profile presidential resignations, Tierney argues that commonly blamed factors are not the true cause of presidential downfalls. 

   

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