Elevator Pitch for a Women's College: Revamp Curriculum, Attract Students

← Back to News

Published by The Chronicle of Higher Education

Ms. Kiss returned to an idea that had been proposed a few years earlier — creating a Center for Women’s Global Leadership. She also hired a consulting firm, the Art & Science Group, which recommended that Agnes Scott test the global-leadership idea against other possibilities. So faculty members came up with a total of eight concepts.

"There was a lot of brainstorming — what idea that is true to who we are could we go big with?" says Ms. Hackett. Among the possibilities were making Agnes Scott a college centered on social justice and turning the college into an institution for self-reflection.

Admitting men, however, was never on the table.

Art & Science commissioned a survey that reached 675 students in the college’s inquiry pool and 323 students who had been admitted, and the consultants presented the results at a faculty meeting in November 2013. Of the big ideas, only leadership and global awareness were hits with the high-school women.

Afterward, Ms. Kiss challenged the faculty and staff to move fast. "We said, OK, fall of 2015 is when we start," the president recalls. "The ability to catch students’ attention has an expire date."

Read full article →