Centenary's Dr. Karen Soul selected for national leadership development program

SHREVEPORT, LA — Centenary College is pleased to announce that Dr. Karen Soul, Vice Provost for Academic Affairs, is one of 30 administrators in higher education nationwide selected by the Council of Independent Colleges (CIC) to participate in the 2016–2017 Senior Leadership Academy.

"This is well-deserved recognition and an outstanding professional opportunity for Karen," says Centenary president Dr. David Rowe. "She has provided crucial leadership as Centenary's Vice Provost, and the CIC Senior Leadership Academy will help her continue to develop these skills as well as connect with her peers at other institutions across the country."

Individuals chosen for the year-long program are administrators or faculty leaders in higher education who have been identified by their institutions as having the potential for senior leadership positions in independent colleges or universities. Soul will participate in an opening seminar in New Orleans, Louisiana, November 4–6, 2016, and a closing seminar in Washington, DC, June 22–24, 2017. She also will undertake a mentoring program, work with experts in various aspects of higher education administration, participate in webinars, engage in a series of readings and case studies during the academic year, and follow a professional experiential plan to "fill the gaps" needed for career advancement.

The Academy is designed to prepare prospective leaders to assume positions as the chief officers in any division—including academic affairs, student affairs, finance, enrollment management, and advancement—in independent higher education.

"The need to prepare future leaders of colleges and universities has never been greater because the generation of people now in senior leadership positions on campus is rapidly approaching retirement," said CIC President Richard Ekman. "Competition for the available places in the program was intense, and the review committee found the nomination materials to be most impressive. They (and I) believe that Dr. Soul has the potential for highly effective leadership in a position of senior responsibility on campus."

Soul came to Centenary in 2003 as an instructor in the education department, and advanced to the position of Vice Provost for Academic Affairs in 2012. She earned a B.A.S. in elementary education and an M.Ed. with a concentration in language arts at the University of Minnesota and a Ph.D. at the University of Texas.

Sixty-one percent of participants in the first Senior Leadership Academy cohort (2010–2011) have advanced in their careers, and 19 percent of participants in the most recently completed cohort (2014–2015) already have earned more advanced positions. "These indicators suggest that CIC is helping to meet the leadership needs of higher education by offering highly effective leadership development programs for modest fees to member institutions," Ekman said.

The Academy is co-sponsored by CIC and the American Academic Leadership Institute (AALI). Tom Kepple, president of AALI and president emeritus of Juniata College (PA), is the program director.

The Council of Independent Colleges is an association of 765 nonprofit independent colleges and universities and higher education affiliates and organizations that has worked since 1956 to support college and university leadership, advance institutional excellence, and enhance public understanding of private higher education's contributions to society. CIC is the major national organization that focuses on providing services to leaders of independent colleges and universities as well as conferences, seminars, and other programs that help institutions to improve educational quality, administrative and financial performance, and institutional visibility. CIC conducts the largest annual conferences of college and university presidents and of chief academic officers. CIC also provides support to state fundraising associations that organize programs and generate contributions for private colleges and universities. The Council is headquartered at One Dupont Circle in Washington, DC.

The American Academic Leadership Institute provides leadership identification and development programs across all sectors of public and private higher education. AALI creates and implements programs and assistance for academic leaders in various administrative positions enabling them to be successful in their roles and to advance the institutions they serve. In addition, AALI supports research and publications and consults with academic leaders and boards of trustees concerning traditional and emerging issues facing higher education and its governance. Headquartered in Washington, DC, AALI and its predecessor organizations have participated in the advancement of higher education for over 30 years. A subsidiary of AALI, Academic Search Inc. (ASI), one of the nation's premier search firms since 1976, provides significant funds each year to support AALI leadership development programs. The ASI subsidy allows AALI programs to be offered at a comparatively low price.

Notice of Nondiscriminatory Policy The institution does not discriminate in its educational and employment policies against any person on the basis of gender, race, color, religion, age, disability, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, or on any other basis proscribed by federal, state, or local law.