Kellogg Funds Minority Leadership Initiative

Feb 15th, 2003 | By | Category: 14-3: Your Heroes Are Not Our Heroes, Tribal College News

Leaders of the Alliance for Equity in Higher Education have pledged to identify and mentor the next generation of presidents and senior executives for America’s Minority-Serving Institutions (MSIs). The alliance, a first-of-its-kind national coalition of associations and institutions that serve students of color, launched this initiative with the support of a four-year, $6 million grant from the W. K. Kellogg Foundation.

The project focuses on building presidential and senior leadership at institutions in the Alliance for Equity in Higher Education, a three-year-old coalition representing the largest and broadest partnership of MSIs in American higher education. The three organizations in the alliance are: the American Indian Higher Education Consortium (AIHEC), the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU), and the National Association for Equal Opportunity in Higher Education (NAFEO).

These three organizations will work together to design the program while shaping it to meet the unique issues of their own communities, according to Jamie Merisotis, president of the Institute for Higher Education Policy and alliance director. Kellogg’s interest in the leadership initiative reflects its investments in minority-serving institutions over the past several years and its desire to have a signature opportunity to celebrate its own 75-year anniversary, according to Merisotis.

The demand for leaders in the minority-serving institution community far exceeds the supply, yet there has been little attention paid to the task of identifying and educating the next generation of leaders, according to leaders of the alliance member organizations.

Dr. Gerald Gipp, executive director of AIHEC, said, “We are keenly aware that leadership development for the future means adopting new models. Models that exalt control and authority must be replaced by a new vision of leadership as it occurs in the context of minority-serving campuses.” Dr. Antonio Flores, president of HACU, said, “The growing diversity in our society brings its own set of increasingly complex challenges, including the need for leadership that bridges the political, racial, cultural, and economic boundaries in our communities.” Dr. Fred Humphries, president of NAFEO, said, “Over the next decade, many of the current leaders of MSIs will be retiring, which makes the comprehensive intergenerational transfer of knowledge imperative.”

The leadership initiative provides for 30 fellows per year for three years, who will be paired with mentors in minority-serving institutions beginning next fall.   The Institute for Higher Education Policy, a non-profit, non-partisan research and policy organization in Washington, DC, serves as convener for this and other programs of the Alliance for Equity in Higher Education. Regular updates will be available on the alliance website at <>.

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