Earlham is grounded in abiding Quaker principles: mutual respect; integrity; peace and justice; simplicity; and community. These values are the bedrock of our approach to teaching and learning. We stand apart from our peers by inviting students into a community where they are expected to take ownership of their own education, and where students and professors forge a real partnership in classrooms, laboratories and research sites. Our approach to learning in community matters most in times of tumult and transition. Today’s world (not to mention today’s institutions of higher learning) need courage, creativity and sustainable ways forward. The world needs innovators. The world needs leaders who listen well and help groups come to consensus. The world also needs insightful people who examine problems from multiple angles, and then develop collaborative solutions that contribute to the social good. In short, the world needs Earlhamites. Earlham needs a president who embodies these qualities, can nurture them in others, and who will successfully champion Earlham’s mission and vision to the world.
Like all liberal arts colleges, Earlham College is facing a complex set of challenges related to enrollment and funding. The particular challenges facing Earlham College in terms of declining net tuition revenue and increasing budget deficits have been covered by The Chronicle of Higher Education and Inside Higher Ed. These challenges have been intensified by the departure of our past president after only one year. The Board of Trustees recognizes that it must redouble its commitment to work collaboratively with the next president so that the College can be successful at this critical moment in the institution’s history.
Earlham’s advantages in the current higher education market include its 170-year commitment to progressive education, a solid endowment (about $425 million), a dynamic strategic plan, a renewed commitment to a sustainable funding model and a community of students, faculty, staff and alumni who are passionate about the potential of education to shape lives and contribute to positive change in the world. The College’s next president will have the opportunity to build on a long history of transformative education in the Quaker tradition and help chart a course that will benefit Earlham students, and the world, for generations to come.