Emerging Trends in Higher Education
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Emerging Trends in Higher Education

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The Authors:


Michael G. Strawser, James D. Breslin, & Adam Elias



As the higher education market becomes more saturated with competition and as enrollment demographics continue to shift, universities must become more adept at developing, implementing, and promoting strategic initiatives. Recently, Bellarmine University, a private liberal arts institution in Louisville, KY, created a new strategic plan. The strategic planning process was a campus-wide initiative bringing together faculty, staff, and administrators. This resource was inspired by that strategic planning process.

The authors played integral roles in the strategic planning process during their time at Bellarmine. Each author created a section that either connects directly to their expertise or is connected to their experiences during the strategic planning process. This resource is applicable for any institution and provides a structured, readable, and applicable strategic planning resource. As an overview of emerging trends, this book can be used by faculty, staff, and administrators alike to evaluate current institutional dynamics in light of national and international trends. The authors, like those in your own institutions, may not agree on every point, and you will see that play out across these pages, but differing perspectives provide value.
This resource includes questions to ponder at the end of every chapter that can help small groups and work groups think strategically about next steps. The book is divided into three easy to read sections: Institutional Economics (exploring university finances); Student Services; and Teaching and Learning.


"Although no institution is immune to challenges of the current higher education market, some universities face more dire situations compared to others. While it is important to recognize where institutions may fall short in their fiscal projections, it is hard to grapple with financial truths if there is not an underlying foundation of financial knowledge."

"As the landscape changes, institutional partnerships become even more appealing (and important). Universities must innovate and part of that innovative mentality can include collaboration and partnerships."

"From first-year orientation to senior week, those who work on college campuses are almost constantly presented with opportunities to engage students in the life of academe. Between these two seminal experiences, myriad curricular and co-curricular engagement opportunities are offered: summer bridge programming, first-year experience courses, transition support services, academic services, residence hall programming, undergraduate research, service and leadership positions, and on-campus employment opportunities."

About the

Michael G. Strawser, Ph.D., currently serves as an Assistant Professor of Communication and the Deputy Assistant Director overseeing Curriculum and Instruction in the Nicholson School of Communication and Media at the University of Central Florida. Before his time at UCF, Dr. Strawser was the Director of Graduate Programs and an Assistant Professor of Communication at Bellarmine University in Louisville, KY. Dr. Strawser’s previous books include Engaging Millennial Faculty (New Forums Press) and edited volumes: New Media and Digital Pedagogy: Enhancing the Twenty-First Century Classroom, Transformative Student Experiences in Higher Education: Meeting the Needs of the Twenty-First Century Student and Modern Workplace, and Leading Millennial Faculty: Navigating the New Professoriate (all with Lexington Books). His research interests broadly include instructional and organizational communication and higher education, specifically faculty development and teaching and learning. Dr. Strawser is also the owner and lead consultant for Legacy Communication Training and Consulting, L.L.C. (www.legacyctc.com).

James D. Breslin, Ph.D., is a higher education scholar, practitioner, and consultant who specializes in student success, academic support and advising, assessment, institutional effectiveness, and leadership and administration. He currently serves as the Assistant Provost for Assessment, Accreditation, and Institutional Effectiveness at Bellarmine University. Dr. Breslin has presented more than 60 conference sessions and published several peer-reviewed articles and book chapters on a variety of topics. Dr. Breslin participates as an active citizen in the field of higher education and has consulted with more than two dozen institutions across the US and beyond. He has served on editorial boards for several peer-reviewed publications and in elected leadership roles in professional organizations. Dr. Breslin has been recognized for his contributions to the field of higher education with multiple awards from associations and funding agencies, and most recently was named a Diamond Honoree by the American College Personnel Association.

Adam Elias currently serves as Director of Innovative Learning Systems at Bellarmine University, a role in which he promotes and supports academic innovation, particularly in the development of the university’s distance education initiatives. Adam has spent over ten years in administrative roles in distance education, at both public and private institutions. He is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Higher Education from the University of Kentucky; his research interests include distance education perceptions and policy, as well as managing change in institutional identity and operations resulting from shifts in instructional models. He has presented at numerous state and national conferences, on topics such as instructional technology, delivery models, and postsecondary trends. His work has been published in The Chronicle of Higher Education. The best thing about Adam is the company he keeps: He married his high school sweetheart, Natalie, and they live happily ever after with their two beautiful daughters, in Louisville, Kentucky.


 2020 [ISBN: : 978-1-58107-340-9; 184 pages, 6 x 9 inches, soft cover]