Dr. Nancy Hensel announced that she will step down as president of The New American Colleges & Universities (NAC&U). She will remain in the position until June 30, 2019, or until a successor is in place.

“It has been a special privilege for me to serve as president of NAC&U as I was a faculty member at a member campus during the early discussions that resulted in the founding of NAC&U,” said Hensel. “I have always believed that the NAC&U mission of integrating liberal arts, professional studies, and civic engagement is an excellent direction for higher education.”

Hensel became the first president of The New American Colleges and Universities on November 15, 2011. During her tenure, NAC&U received a Teagle Foundation grant to develop the concepts of holistic departmental management and faculty evaluation. The study led to two monographs – Redefining the Paradigm: Faculty Models to Support Student Learning and Refining the Paradigm: Holistic Evaluation of Faculty to Support Faculty and Student Learning. Hensel also edited Exploring, Experiencing and Envisioning Integration in US Arts Education, which was primarily authored by NAC&U faculty, and Course-Based Undergraduate Research:  Educational Equity and High Impact Practice, which also includes several chapters by NAC&U authors.

“I feel very fortunate to have had the opportunity to work with NAC&U campuses over the past six and a half years,” said Hensel. “It has been an honor to be involved in an organization that is committed to social justice, equity, and providing a quality education for all of our students.”

By encouraging members to participate in Congressional Briefings, the first of which occurred in 2016, Hensel has helped to share the stories of high quality undergraduate education that integrates liberal arts, professional studies, and civic engagement. Hensel also oversaw the creation of the NAC&U ambassador program which has given rise to programs such as the NAC&U Award for Student Excellence. The engagement of constituency groups such as enrollment officers, civic engagement directors and others has also increased during her tenure.

“Nancy leveraged NAC&U’s collaborative culture to build programs that will continue to serve our members well into the future,” said Daan Braveman, chair of the NAC&U board of directors and president of Nazareth College. “We wish her the best in her retirement and look forward to finding the next leader who will continue building on this strong foundation.”

A search for her replacement is underway, and the position announcement can be viewed here.