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Tuesday, Nov. 7

11 a.m. - Noon

Pre-Session with CREDO: Moving the Needle to Increase Student Retention 

What would a 5%-point increase in retention mean for your students and your campus? Moving the Needle (MTN) is a campus + Credo student success partnership that engages the full college community in developing, implementing, and enhancing the conditions, practices, systems, and solutions that foster student success and retention. In this session, learn more about MTN in theory and practice, and hear insights from campus-based leaders on the implementation of the work, the partnership with Credo, and campus results.  
Emma Jones 

Executive Vice President, Credo 

Allison Ash 

Senior Consultant for Student Success, Credo

1 - 1:15 p.m.

Annual Meeting Welcome

Kristen Soares  

President, Association of Independent California Colleges and Universities 


Ann McElaney-Johnson 

Chair, AICCU Executive Committee & President, Mount Saint Mary’s University Los Angeles 

1:15 - 1:45 p.m.

Guest Speaker: The Intersection of Higher Education, Philanthropy, and Community

The ECMC Foundation is a nationally focused working to improve higher education for career success among underserved populations through evidence-based innovation. Their grantmaking is focused on supporting work that removes barriers to postsecondary completion; builds the capacity of institutions, systems and organizations; and transforms the postsecondary ecosystem. 


Lynn Alvarez will speak about the foundation's important work in the higher education space and how nonprofit colleges and universities can partner with them. 

Lynn Alvarez 

Vice President, Programs and Strategies, ECMC Foundation 

1:50 - 2:50 p.m.

Panel: What Now? How Do We Shape Our Student Bodies to Reflect the Diversity of our State and Nation.

In late-June, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the ability of colleges and universities to use the consideration of race and ethnicity in admissions decisions. In addition to concerns of the curtailing of college access and diversity on campuses, higher education leaders fear that the decision will have a chilling effect among potential students from underrepresented communities to even consider postsecondary education. 


This panel of practitioners from the legal field, and higher education DEI will discuss what admissions considerations are allowed under the decision and the important outreach and engagement that will need to be done to create a diverse student body that reflects the state and country. 

Jesús Andrade, Senior Director of School Partnerships and Policy, Improve Your Tomorrow 
Natasha Baker, Managing Attorney, Novus Law Firm  

Mitchell Chang, Vice Provost of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion, University of California, Los Angeles 

Mary Lomax-Ghirarduzzi, Vice President for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, University of the Pacific  

Moderated by Harry Elam, President, Occidental College. Followed by 10-minute table discussions.

2:50 - 3:05 p.m.

Coffee with Sponsors

Sponsor Spotlight: ODP

3:05 - 3:55 p.m.

Government Relations Update: How We Fared in 2023

Every year, the State Legislature introduces and debates roughly 3,000 bill proposals. This session will cover the key initiatives and trends from this year, the current perceptions of the ICCU sector among legislators and staff, key bills of interest and outcomes, and offer some insights into AICCU advocacy efforts in 2024. 


Special presentation: The Cradle-to-Career Data System recently met a landmark goal—the incorporation of data from K-12 and public higher education institutions. Mary Ann Bates with the Office of Cradle-to-Career will provide an update on the data system and the importance of bringing in data from the independent higher education sector. 
Alex Graves, Vice President for Government Relations, AICCU

Thomas Vu, Vice President for Policy, AICCU
Mary Ann Bates, Executive Director, Office of Cradle-to-Career Data  

4 - 5 p.m.

Panel: Discussion with State Policy Leaders

In this session, participants will get a bird’s eye view of policy and politics in the State Capital. These veteran staff members hold positions of tremendous influence over legislation and the budget. They will share insight into the state political landscape in 2023, the major issues facing legislators, and the challenges to expect in 2024. 


Mark Martin, Principal Consultant, Assembly Budget Subcommittee on Education Finance 

Greg Maw, Policy Director, California Senate Republican Caucus  
Lyndsay Mitchell, Senior Consultant, Assembly Republican Caucus Office of Policy and Research 
Kimberly Rodriguez, Policy Director, Office of Senate President Pro Tem Toni Atkins 

Moderated by Erika Bustamante, Assistant Vice President for State Government Affairs, Stanford University. Followed by 10-minute table discussions.

5 - 5:30 p.m.


5:30 - 7 p.m.

Reception and Policymaker of the Year Recognition

The reception is an opportunity for participants to meet and network with their colleagues, as well as guests from the public higher education sectors and the Capital community. Also, AICCU is honored to recognize the Honorable James Ramos, California State Assembly – District 45, as the AICCU 2023 Policymaker of the Year for his support of independent California colleges and universities and their students. 

Sponsor Spotlight: TIAA 

Jeff Musell, Director, Multiple Employer Plan, TIAA 

Wednesday, Nov. 8

7 - 8 a.m.


8 - 8:55 a.m.

Pre-Session: Building Powerful Relationships with Your Elected Officials

This session is designed for president leaders on how to engage and build effective relationships with legislators. University of La Verne President Emerita Devorah Lieberman will share how she built strong and effective working relationships with her local, state, and federal elected officials. These relationships resulted in wins for student support funds and grant funds for university projects. State Senator Susan Rubio will provide an elected official’s perspective on building impactful, reinforcing relationships. Both presenters will walk through strategies that worked for her and can be replicated to put your elected officials one text message away. 


The Honorable Susan Rubio 

State Senator (District 22), California State Senate  

Devorah Lieberman 

President Emerita, University of La Verne 

9 - 10 a.m.

AICCU 2023 Annual Business Meeting

Please refer to the Annual Business Meeting agenda. 
All attendees are welcome to join the 2023 AICCU Annual Business Meeting, as the Executive Committee discusses new members to the board, reviews and considers updates to the 2023-24 legislative agenda, and dispenses with other business. 

10:05 - 10:50 a.m

New Carnegie Classifications: What's New and What it Means for Your Institution 

The Carnegie Classification is the leading framework for recognizing and describing institutional diversity in U.S. higher education. In 2022, the American Council on Education partnered with Carnegie to develop new and refined versions of the Classifications that better reflect the public purpose, mission, focus, and impact of higher education. Sara Gast will provide insight into these changes, what they mean for independent colleges and universities, and the intended impact for society. 

Sara Gast, Deputy Executive Director, Carnegie Classification  

10:50 - 11:05 a.m.

Coffee with Sponsors

Sponsor Spotlight: Pathify

11:05 - 11:55 a.m.

Higher Education's Worth: Navigating the Value Debate

Over the last few years, we have seen policymakers from both sides of the aisle call into question the value of higher education and, with attention on student debt and cost of college, families ask whether a four-year degree is “worth it.” Data still show, however, that a four-year degree is still a worthwhile investment. The panelists will discuss how campus leaders can speak toward the question of value to both policymakers and families, and whether institutions do indeed have to reevaluate what value means in higher education. 

Hans Johnson, Senior Fellow, Public Policy Institute of California

Barbara Mistick, President, National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities
Lori Varlotta, President, California Lutheran University


Moderated by Jamienne Studley, President of Western Association of Schools and Colleges – Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC).

Noon - 12:15 p.m.

Lunch Break

12:15 - 1 p.m.

Federal Update on the Nation's Political and Postsecondary Landscape

The federal political environment continued to witness great convulsions in 2023 and higher education was often in the middle of them. These include uncertainty in the federal budget and impact on student aid programs, Supreme Court decisions, regulations that would have onerous effects on higher education operations, and more. Ted Mitchell of the American Council on Education will speak about the postsecondary landscape in our nation at the end of 2023 and what we can expect in 2024.  

Ted Mitchell, President, American Council on Education

Moderated by Thomas Vu, Vice President for Policy, AICCU.

1:05 - 2 p.m.

Student Success and Authentic Assessment in the Age of Generative AI

As AI technology continues to grow and evolve to become a permanent fixture in our lives, colleges and universities grapple to understand and utilize it in the classroom and in their operations. In this session, Todd Taylor, principal, Strategic Development for Higher Education at Adobe, and professor of English at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, will speak about the role of Generative AI in how students can equitably access higher education opportunities, learn and succeed once they are in, and respond to a quickly changing environment.


Todd Taylor, Principal of Strategic Development for Higher Education at Adobe and Professor of English at UNC Chapel Hill.

2 p.m.

Close Annual Meeting

Ann McElaney-Johnson, Chair, AICCU Executive Committee & President, Mount Saint Mary’s University Los Angeles 

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