In an opinion column in University Business Magazine, President Thomas L. Hellie said the strength of America’s higher education system is found in its diversity of approaches.
Colleges and universities share a calling to help create an educated citizenry, Hellie says, and coordinating programs and sharing resources helps further that goal.
But education leaders should seek a balance between collaboration and uniformity, he says. “In striving for efficiency, we may endanger several of American higher education’s fundamental strengths: diversity, quality and academic freedom.
“Too much uniformity will detract from the very quality that makes our colleges the envy of the world,” Hellie says.
“As stewards of higher education, we must move forward with wisdom, seeking the middle ground that will help our students thrive,” he says.
President Hellie serves on the boards of the Council of Independent Colleges and the Oregon Alliance of Independent Colleges and Universities, and previously served as vice-president for the Associated Colleges of the Midwest.