News & Insights

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.

In our work at the In Trust Center, we’ve found that boards often report needing to dedicate more time in meetings to issues related to the future of the institution. This includes more strategic board-level issues like succession planning (for officers of the board and key administrative leaders, not just presidents), economic vitality, mission fulfillment, and innovative partnerships.  

What are the top strategic issues facing your school over the next few years?

Recently the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges (AGB) published Top Strategic Issues for Boards 2018 – 2019. It includes a list of six issues for board consideration that are related to instrutional futures:

  • Educational Quality
  • Financial Stability
  • Freedom of Speech
  • Innovation
  • Presidential Leadership
  • Relevance

The list is not surprising. But what’s particularly valuable in this publication is the questions for board consideration for each issue. If you are thinking about how your board can dedicate time to strategic conversation and about how to guide this time, consider using this AGB resource. AGB’s Top Strategic Issues for Boards 2018-2019 is available for purchase from the AGB store.

Another resource that can aid in strategic conversation is the In Trust Center’s Wise Stewards Guide, which is available for download in English and in Spanish. A facilitator’s guide with discussion questions and how-to’s is available by emailing

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Upcoming Events

The In Trust Center hosts learning community spaces throughout the year. Check out our upcoming events below.

I See That Hand


Board members are typically recruited for their leadership, business acumen, and networks. Dr. Rebekah Basinger, project director of the In Trust Center’s Wise Stewards Initiative, will discuss how strategic questioning and interrogation skills are essential for effective board stewardship.

Strategic Partnerships in Higher Education


In this on-demand webinar, Rick Staisloff, senior partner of rpk GROUP, discusses essential aspects of strategic partnerships. This session delves into current trends, identification of partners, navigating the due diligence process, and common challenges.

Closing the Trust Gap


The current and very troubling condition of trust is a clarion call to action. But despite the dismal data showing pervasive organizational distrust, every organization can assess their current level of trust, learn and adopt a proven trust building framework, and then develop a meaningful and long-lasting plan of action. This webinar details the knowledge and practical next steps to strengthen workplace culture as a result of closing the trust gap.

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In Trust Center provides Resource Consulting to our members at no charge. Contact us today and let us guide you to the most helpful resources for your situation.

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