NACU soft launched its new website today. In the past, we all know this would be a big deal. We are definitely pleased with this new look and feel as we champion our campuses. They truly are the CHAMPIONS, graduating extraordinary professionals for a global workforce and society!
SOCHE and the Dayton Area Chapter of the American Red Cross are teaming up to increase the civic engagement and volunteerism of area college students. SOCHE and the Red Cross are committed to further strengthening the already good relationships campuses have with their communities.
With over 200,000 students at SOCHE member schools, this partnership taps into the student population to help build a stronger volunteer base for the Red Cross and the region.
The first event in the partnership will take place on October 13 during National Fire Prevention Week and includes engaging students and faculty in the Red Cross program Sound the Alarm.
Sound the Alarm is a home fire safety and smoke alarm installation program designed to save lives. Every day, seven people die in home fires, most in homes that lack working smoke alarms. Sadly, children and the elderly disproportionately lose their lives.
Students will have the opportunity to install smoke alarms and share fire safety information across neighborhoods in the Red Cross service area, which includes Greene, Montgomery, and Preble counties. Cory Paul, executive director of the Dayton Area Chapter of the Red Cross said, “Partnering with SOCHE is a great way to involve young people in initiatives that make a huge difference for our communities through volunteerism and collaboration. We have an opportunity to save a life, what could be better?”
Sean Creighton, SOCHE’s president, said, “Colleges and universities are committed to providing learning experiences to students through community engagement. This partnership is a good way to build persistent student engagement as we want Sound the Alarm to be the first of many events with the Red Cross and its many chapter across southwest Ohio.”
There will be volunteer shifts, 9am to 12pm and 12pm to 3pm. To register to participate in the October 13th Sound the Alarm event, visit: Sound the Alarm Volunteer
For awhile, we have been saying that higher education needs to do a better job telling its story. Last year, we went so far as to incorporate into SOCHE’s strategic roadmap the goal to “capture and communicate the value of higher education….” The day has finally come!
After talking with our colleagues at several other higher education associations in Ohio about a messaging campaign, one group took the lead to get us started and SOCHE is partnering on the effort as we know all colleges and universities–big and small, liberal arts, historically black, research, land-grant, faith-based, religious-affiliated, technical, and the very important community colleges–this wonderful plethora of institutions will drive Ohio forward into a prosperous future.
Read the official announcement of the partnership:
SOCHE Joins Forward Ohio Initiative
Campaign launched to tout the value of higher education
DAYTON, Ohio (August 20, 2018) – The Southwestern Ohio Council for Higher Education (SOCHE) joins as a partner with the Inter-University Council (IUC) on Forward Ohio, an initiative to raise awareness of the value of colleges and universities and make higher education a key pillar in public policy discussion in Ohio. The initiative provides a counter-narrative to the negative publicity higher education has received nationally in recent years that has focused on exaggerated student debt without addressing return on investment.
Launched by the IUC last May, Forward Ohio is a statewide campaign that recognizes how Ohio’s institutions of higher education help shape the world in which our children and grandchildren attain the knowledge and skills required to reach their dreams, succeed in their chosen field and enjoy a more satisfying quality of life. Forward Ohio documents fulfilled aspirations – for our citizens, our state and our society. The campaign shines a light on ways in which Ohio colleges and universities drive economic growth, enable student success, expand career and job opportunities, and improve society through research and scientific breakthroughs. Dr. Sean Creighton, president of SOCHE said, “Our members are producing the quantity and quality of students needed for Ohio to be economically competitive. By joining Forward Ohio’s campaign, we will further tell the story of higher education’s value and impact on our region, as well as support the push to create public policies that increase investment in Ohio’s college students.”
SOCHE’s involvement will include sharing stories and data that underscore the value of SOCHE member colleges and universities with a specific emphasis on their collective impact on southwest Ohio. As well, SOCHE will work with IUC to leverage local media and other public opportunities to amplify the value and impact of Ohio’s college and universities on people, economies, and communities.
Bruce Johnson, president of the IUC welcomed SOCHE’s participation in Forward Ohio, saying, “Higher education is one of Ohio’s most important assets and IUC and SOCHE working together to better tell that story will help with the state’s ability to attract and retain jobs, which is key to Ohio’s economic future.”
Formed in 1967, SOCHE has become the trusted and recognized regional leader for higher ed collaboration, working with colleges and universities to transform their communities and economies through the education, employment, and engagement of nearly 200,000 students in southwest Ohio. SOCHE is home to the Aerospace Professional Development Center (APDC), and Defense Associated Graduate Student Innovators (DAGSI), and SOCHEIntern, to name a few. For more information about SOCHE and all its products, visit http://www.soche.org/.
Very happy to announce the merger this week! We see mergers as part of SOCHE’s future plans to create synergistic collaboration.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Sean Creighton, President, SOCHE
DAGSI Joins SOCHE in Merger
Two respected organizations become stronger through merger
DAYTON, Ohio (July 16, 2018) – The Southwestern Ohio Council for Higher Education (SOCHE) and Defense Associated Graduate Student Innovators (DAGSI) officially merged on July 1, resulting in a stronger workforce initiative that builds upon DAGSI and SOCHE’s dual efforts in developing the next generation of scientists to advance the research priorities of the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) and defense industry in Ohio.
The conversation between SOCHE and DAGSI at the board level began almost a year ago and started from a place of mutual interest. Kathleen Carlson, DAGSI board chair said, “I’m excited DAGSI will live on through SOCHE. DAGSI’s relationships throughout the state with its Ohio university partners and AFRL led to one-of-a kind research projects for hundreds of graduate students. Its work aligns perfectly with the mission of SOCHE and will grow and evolve under the new leadership.”
Dr. Jo Alice Blondin, SOCHE’s board chair and president of Clark State Community College said, “SOCHE adds tremendous value to the workforce by leveraging higher education talent in our region to ensure its prosperity. This is a win-win merger for both organizations, creating a synergy of resources under SOCHE’s workforce programs that will further develop the current and future generations of talent in Ohio.”
Funded by the Ohio Department of Higher Education and AFRL, DAGSI’s statewide program has effectively supported graduate student researchers at Ohio colleges and universities. Since 2004, DAGSI awarded over 280 collaborative projects that have strengthened Ohio’s intellectual infrastructure in technology and engineering and shored up the state’s high-tech workforce. “The DAGSI program continues to exceed our objectives and is bringing tangible value to the Air Force,” said Mick Hitchcock, Technical Advisor, Small Business Directorate.
Now part of SOCHE’s workforce solutions led by Dr. Cassie Barlow, SOCHE Chief Operations Officer, DAGSI’s long-time established brand will be maintained for years to come with its newly refreshed name. “DAGSI is focused on supporting graduate students and faculty that bring novel thinking to current challenges in the area of aerospace and defense,” explained Dr. Barlow. “Since its inception, DAGSI has become a proven success with over 70% of students remaining employed in Ohio after graduation,” Barlow added.
Formed in 1967, SOCHE is guided by 23 college and universities members and has become the trusted and recognized regional leader for higher ed collaboration, working with colleges and universities to transform their communities and economies through the education, employment, and engagement of nearly 200,000 students in southwest Ohio. SOCHE is home to the Aerospace Professional Development Center (APDC), and Defense Associated Graduate Student Innovators (DAGSI), and SOCHEIntern, to name a few. For more information about SOCHE and all its products, visit http://www.soche.org/.
On October 20th, TEDxDayton will celebrate its fifth anniversary. Every step of the way, this community initiative has been driven by unmatched volunteerism and leadership. Individuals from diverse backgrounds and professions have joined together, building new connections, relationships, and synergy in the spirit of lifting up TED’s motto Ideas Worth Spreading. More than a fun day of stories and performances, TEDxDayton exemplifies effective citizen engagement, and has become a beloved community event for Dayton since its inception.
Thank you Chris Anderson and the team at TED. And many congratulations to all those who have been involved from day one up through year five and have been the Current in our community!
Higher education continues to get beat up in the public eye. When will it respond?
During the presidential campaign season last year, candidates focused on the cost of higher education, student debt, making college affordable (or even free). No one talked about the value and impact of higher education. Now, a Pew study indicates 58% of Republicans think higher education is bad for America. This is a dangerous public opinion trend for our nation and our future.
Where’s the counter narrative?
Jim Tressel, president of Youngstown State University, delivered a strong message at the Ohio Department of Higher Education Efficiency Summit that higher education has done a poor job telling its story and illustrating its value and impact. President Tressel shared data points from a Lumina Foundation report to illustrate the impact of higher education. In comparing high school graduates to college graduates, individuals with bachelor’s degrees:
- Earn 56% more annually
- Earn an additional $625,000 in lifetime earnings
- Are 3.5 times less likely to be in poverty
- Are 2.2 times less likely to be unemployed
- Contribute $275,000 more in taxes
- Are 47% more likely to have health insurance through an employer
- Are 3.9 times less likely to smoke
- Have a life expectancy that is seven years longer
- Are 4.9 times less likely to go to prison
- Are 21% more likely to be married and 61% less likely to get divorced
- Are more involved in community, more likely to vote, own a home, contribute more to charity, volunteer, are much more likely to report being happy….and…
- Only 4.9% of the opioid deaths in Ohio in 2016 had a bachelor’s degree or higher (95% did not have a college degree)
These dozen data points are the tip of the iceberg. We know there are an infinite number of stories that illustrate higher ed’s value and the impact it has on people, economies, communities, and America.
Now more than ever, we need a comprehensive campaign that provides the counter narrative; one that is influential and, ultimately, changes public opinion, ignites public trust, and prioritizes investing in higher education. Our colleges and universities are the best solution America has for a brighter future.
At SOCHE, as we celebrate our 50th anniversary, we plan to capture and communicate the value and impact of higher education. While we will focus on our region, we need a coalition of partners to campaign with us to change public opinion nationally, so Pew’s next study produces different results and policymakers trend
toward investment not divestment in higher education.
It’s time to tell the higher story!
Recently, I had the chance to participate on a panel at Antioch College. They relaunched a program, a fond memory for many Antiochians, called Friday Forum. Our forum focused on the Financial Sustainability of Liberal Arts Colleges in the 21st Century.
The moderator asked me to reflect on the financial situation facing colleges and universities across southwest, Ohio. I apologized upfront for the gloomy picture I would initially have to paint: 1) declining state support for public universities coupled with increase in unfunded mandates; 2) extremely competitive, therefore expensive, environment for recruiting students; 3) tuition discount rates rising north of 50% on average (north of 75% for some; north of 90% for others) and climbing steadily; 3) more than 70% decline in applications from international students (for some campuses, their cash cow) due to the presidential race and election results; 4) escalating costs of infrastructure and general operations; and 5) poor decision making by boards and administrations.
These scenarios, and many others, are stressing already tight budgets at colleges and universities, and certainly contributing momentum to the disruption of its business model.
In the face of this reality, the value-proposition for collaboration is rising. However, we need to advance beyond your typical practice of collaboration; the time for hyper-collaboration has arrived. While purchased goods and services saved campuses a few dollars in the past, these strategies are not enough to transform the business model. Higher education must transcend traditional cost savings methods by forging deep partnerships.
What does hyper-collaboration look like? It is a deep partnership that is resilient, substantial in cost savings or revenue generation, and mutually beneficial to all parties. It can include sharing faculty, facilities, and courses. It can include a research collaborative that garners significant external support. It can be the centralization of backend services. It could be a tuition management system for multiple campuses. It could be…whatever we can challenge ourselves to envision and implement!
In the case of Antioch, there is definite opportunity to partner with several nearby liberal arts colleges, as well as look for partnership opportunities with the Village of Yellow Springs, a uniquely charming and progressive community.
As we kick off 2017, I am delighted to see Heidi Gardner’s book Smart Collaboration has entered the marketplace (and my iPad). The book claims to show “firms earn higher margins, inspire greater client loyalty, attract and retain the best talent, and gain a competitive edge when specialists collaborate across functional boundaries.”
While Gardner’s book appears to have a bent toward professional service firms (e.g. legal), I’m looking forward to reading this deeply researched effort to discuss the importance of collaboration. Optimistically, I anticipate finding examples of collaboration that may serve as models for higher education, as well as the public sector. And, undoubtedly, I am thinking this book will shed light on existing gaps in the research and, consequently, perpetuate scholars-practitioners to wrestle further with the study of collaborative enterprise across all sectors.
Please look forward to a more thorough review of Smart Collaboration to come. Until then, happy collaborating to all in 2017!
Led by David Oxley, President of Pomona College, nearly 550 college and university presidents, to date, are signatories on the Statement in Support of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Program and our Undocumented Immigrant Students. This statement sends a strong message to the president-elect and his incoming administration on the importance of DACA and “the critical benefits of this program for our students, and the highly positive impacts on our institutions and communities.”
Now is time for public and private higher ed leaders to be more vocal on policy issues that impact their students and campuses, and come together to form a civic coalition that protects students and their access to learning and, ultimately, prosperity.
Bravo presidents for using your voice in defense of education!
I recently sat down with Jason Barkeloo, Founder and Chair of Open Therapeutics, at one of my favorite meeting spots, YSB. Barkeloo’s vision has resulted in an open collaboration company. They bring scientists together to share data and focus on developing technologies that will address global health issues. Specializing in synthetic biology, the company believes in “eliminating research silos, encouraging scientific peer-to-peer communication and stimulating collaboration in scientific research.”
Barkeloo wants to partner with SOCHE to aggressively bring student researchers into the mix. Not only will students gain access to advanced biomedical research, the goal of their involvement is multi-fold: 1) increase student research contributions to the open source network; 2) create global connections between new and seasoned scientists; 3) advance the mindset and culture of collaboration among the scientific community and its next generation leadership; 4) perpetuate research done for the global good and solving world health issues; and 5) the list holds the potential to go on and on.
Bravo, Jason and Open Therapeutics!