The Richmond Register

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December 22, 2013

EKU to host forum on higher ed future Jan. 30

Attendance limited to 120

RICHMOND — Eastern Kentucky University will host a Kettering Foundation National Issues Forum on Thursday, Jan. 30, on the “Future of Higher Education.”

One of two such events in the Kentucky for 2014, the event will take place from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the EKU Center for the Arts Black Box Theater.

The Kettering Foundation and EKU are seeking a mix of perspectives from business and economic development leaders, community leaders, educators, college and university student leaders, and others from the eastern half of Kentucky.

The forum will address such questions as:

• How can higher education and institutions such as Eastern Kentucky University best help handle challenges and create the society we want?

• What are our expectations of higher education?

• Are our colleges and universities doing a good job preparing students for the future?

• What is the role of technology in the future of higher education?

“Higher education is a topic that is critical to the future of not only individuals, but also businesses and the communities in which they are located,” Linda Hoke, economic development consultant and former director of civic engagement initiatives at the Southern Growth Policies Board, said. “This is especially true as what employers need and expect from employees continues to rise due to technological advances as well as increasing global competition.”

Recognizing the importance of this issue for the future, the Kettering Foundation’s National Issues Forum Institute and the American Commonwealth Partnership launched a national conversation on the future of higher education aimed at uncovering the views of students, educators, businesses and community members.

“Ideas and comments from the forum at Eastern Kentucky University will be among those shared with policy leaders in the region and nation to help them consider the best paths for the future,” Hoke added.

Registration, at $15, is limited to the first 120 individuals, and includes a luncheon featuring keynote speaker Ted Abernathy, former executive director of the Southern Growth Policies Board. Online registration is available through the Richmond Chamber of Commerce ( or the Berea Chamber of Commerce (

The National Issues Forum Institute and the American Commonwealth Partnership launched a national conversation on the future of higher education in Fall 2012. To date, well over 100 forums have been held, primarily at higher education institutions.

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