President Rachelle Keck Attends Presidents’ Summer Seminar

August 17, 2023

President Rachelle Keck attended the annual Presidents’ Summer Seminar from August 7–9 at Thiel College. The event, organized by the Network of ELCA Colleges and Universities, brought together presidents from seven Lutheran colleges and universities, along with the executive director of NECU, Lamont Wells.

The Presidents’ Summer Seminar is a unique opportunity for academic leaders to “converse, consult and connect,” Wells said. This year’s event fostered insightful discussions on a range of pivotal topics, including leadership principles, shared governance models, the crucial role of educational institutions in driving economic development, effective strategies for embracing and supporting diverse student populations, and the strategic direction of NECU as a consortium of ELCA institutions.

The distinguished participants in this year’s seminar were:

  • Debbie Cottrell, Ph.D.; Texas Lutheran University
  •  Rachelle Keck, Ph.D., J.D.; Grand View University (Iowa)
  • Stephanie Herseth Sandlin, J.D.; Augustana University (S.D.) and president and executive committee chair of the Network of ELCA Colleges and Universities
  • Susan Rundell Singer, Ph.D.; St. Olaf College (Minn.)
  • Susan Traverso, Ph.D.; Thiel College (Pa.)
  • Lori E. Varlotta, Ph.D.; California Lutheran University
  • Lamont Wells, Network of ELCA Colleges and Universities

“The Presidents’ Summer Seminar provides a remarkable opportunity to not only engage in meaningful discussions but also to cultivate genuine relationships among fellow academic leaders,” Sandlin said. “This collaborative environment is vital as we continue to navigate the complexities of higher education.”

Wells emphasized the broader purpose of the meetings. “This seminar represents a unique presidential opportunity to contribute to the overarching vision of ‘so that all may flourish.’ By coming together, we energize our collective efforts to create an educational landscape where every individual’s potential is realized, leading to a brighter and more inclusive future,” he said.