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Inside Higher Ed has a story today about a new survey just released by the Association of Community College Trustees. About 1,600 trustees and 290 community college system chancellors participated.

ACCT logoThe overall results of the survey show that trustees are overwhelmingly white and well-to-do. Although no one should be surprised to see that, some observers had thought that community college trustees might be more "diverse" than other trustees in higher education, because community colleges serve a diverse, often poorer-than-average student body, and major gifts to the school are rarely a factor in appointing community college board members.

The article quotes an expert in community college leadership:

"As a president, you like to have board members who make a lot of money, because they always want to make sure that their CEO's make a lot of money, too," quipped Walter Bumphus, chair in Junior and Community College Education Leadership at the University of Texas at Austin. He noted that presence of relative wealth on these boards is likely due to many having had the means to be fund raisers for the governors who appointed them.

The survey found that about half of trustees are appointed (usually by the state governor) and half are elected. (Some boards have both elected and appointed members.) More than half of trustees are between 60 and 80 years old. About one-third are female.

Read the story in Inside Higher Ed here.


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