Higher education authority to discuss change on horizon

George Mehaffy
George Mehaffy
George Mehaffy

A leader of a higher education association that represents 400 public colleges and universities and their 3.8 million students will address the campus next week about the future of public higher education.

George Mehaffy, vice president for Academic Leadership and Change at the American Association of State Colleges and Universities, will speak as part of NAU President John Haeger and Provost Laura Huenneke’s Speaker Series.

His presentation will begin at 3:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 11, at the High Country Conference Center. It also will be streamed online; local audiences can tune-in to cable channel 4, or watch NAU-TV live online. A showcase and reception will follow, featuring NAU’s successful course redesigns, student success practices and programs that demonstrate how faculty have shifted from a focus on teaching to learning to design.

Mehaffy leads the association’s division responsible for developing and managing programs for member institutions in areas such as leadership development, undergraduate education, technology, international education and teacher education. He works closely with university presidents and chief academic officers on a variety of national initiatives. Each year, his division organizes a number of conferences and meetings, including two national conferences each year for AASCU chief academic officers. He has directed a number of innovative projects, including international programs with China and Liberia; a technology transformation annual conference with EDUCAUSE and the University of Central Florida; an articulation project with community colleges; and two major national studies of student success.

In 2003, he launched the American Democracy Project, a civic engagement initiative with 240 colleges and universities, in partnership with The New York Times.

Most recently, he organized a national effort to transform undergraduate education through an initiative called the Red Balloon Project.