University News

William Paterson University Signs On to Commitment to Advance Women Leaders in Higher Education

"Moving the Needle: Advancing Women Leaders in Higher Education" aims that 50 percent of the chief executives of United States higher education institutions will be women by 2030

William Paterson University has signed on to the Moving the Needle: Advancing Women Leaders in Higher Education call to action campaign to work toward ensuring that 50 percent of the chief executives of United States higher education institutions will be women by 2030.

The campaign was launched in January 2016 by the American Council on Education (ACE), the coordinating body for all the nation’s higher education institutions. It encourages colleges and universities to increase awareness by signing a statement of support to advance women into senior leadership positions in higher education.

President Kathleen Waldron joins a group of more than 100 leaders who recognize that there is a pivotal opportunity to help advance women into the CEO position at America’s colleges and universities as higher education is beginning to see turnover of a generation of leaders.

“I am proud to add my voice to this campaign seeking to advance women to positions of leadership at the nation’s college and universities,” says Waldron.  “Higher education today faces complex challenges that require diverse perspectives, and while we are educating more women than ever, we have not provided a pipeline for them to advance within our colleges and universities.  It is critical that those of us in leadership positions work to advocate for more women to join us.”

The campaign notes that although women now earn the majority of all college degrees, they have made surprisingly little progress when it comes to gaining the top job at colleges and universities, moving the needle just three percentage points since 2006. As of 2011, only 26 percent of college and university presidencies were occupied by women.

“As presidents, we must offer our sponsorship and mentorship and recognize that every presidential vacancy is an opportunity to advance women,” said ACE President Molly Corbett Broad. “The presidents that have already signed on have sent a powerful signal about the importance of this issue and this campaign.”

The Moving the Needle campaign is overseen by the Inclusive Excellence Group of ACE’s Leadership Division, which offers a comprehensive suite of programs that support and advance higher education leaders.

“For decades, ACE has demonstrated a commitment to advancing women along the higher education pipeline,” said Kim Bobby, director of the Inclusive Excellence Group. “The Moving the Needle call to action is a bold new initiative to increase awareness and join together in a collective effort to increase and sustain gender parity in higher education leadership.”

When presidents sign the Moving the Needle: Advancing Women Leaders commitment, they commit to:

  • Nominating qualified women to the highest positions of leadership in higher education wherever and whenever possible.
  • Providing opportunities for emerging women leaders to gain access to the skills and experiences necessary to advance.
  • Educating others, including boards, on the benefits of a gender-diversified leadership.
  • Empowering leadership teams in their own institutions to sponsor women leaders.

For more information on the Moving the Needle: Advancing Women Leaders campaign, please visit www.acenet.edu/JoinMTN

About ACE: Founded in 1918, ACE is the major coordinating body for all the nation’s higher education institutions, representing more than 1,600 college and university presidents and related associations. It provides leadership on key higher education issues and influences public policy through advocacy. For more information, please visit www.acenet.edu or follow ACE on Twitter @ACEducation. 

  03/17/16