Securing America’s Future: The Power of Liberal Arts Education

About the Campaign

The Council of Independent Colleges (CIC) announced its Public Information Campaign for the Liberal Arts and Liberal Arts Colleges in November 2012. The national, multi-pronged initiative directs attention to the compelling evidence that smaller independent colleges produce graduates who are among the best prepared for success in their personal, career, and community lives. The campaign will include research and data that dispel persistent and false stereotypes about independent colleges, feature prominent graduates of independent colleges and universities in all walks of life, and develop new language to describe the advantages of a liberal arts education, especially at independent institutions.

S. Georgia Nugent, president of Kenyon College and chair of the CIC Board of Directors, leads the campaign. The campaign advisory committee is composed of 14 members.

CIC President Richard Ekman recently stated, “In an era when many state university systems are forced to increase tuition and limit enrollment, independent colleges offer a cost-effective alternative that accounts for higher rates of degree-completion and postgraduate satisfaction. Independent colleges are more likely to enroll and graduate low-income and first-generation college students. Their emphasis on the liberal arts is correlated with higher percentages of students who perform well on tests of learning outcomes and who succeed in science and engineering careers. Graduates of these colleges have lower levels of debt than other students, are more involved in their communities, and they graduate on time.”

Download the Feburary 2017 campaign update.

Campaign Advisory Committee

S. Georgia Nugent, Campaign Chair and President Emerita, Kenyon College
Gregory Carroll, Vice President, University Marketing, Stetson University
Brian Eckert, Executive Director, Communications and Public Affairs, Washington and Lee University
Brad Harsha, Director of Admissions, Defiance College
Chris Kimball, President, California Lutheran University
Jay Lemons, President, Susquehanna University
Tom Morris, President, Virginia Foundation for Independent Colleges
Michele Perkins, President, New England College
Carolyn J. Stefanco, President, The College of Saint Rose
Haywood Strickland, President, Wiley College
Karl Stumo, Vice President, Enrollment Management and Marketing, Dominican University (IL)
Eileen Wilson-Oyelaran, President, Kalamazoo College

Campaign Donors

CIC is grateful to the following organizations for their generous support of the liberal arts campaign:

Arthur Vining Davis Foundations
Carnegie Corporation of New York
The Endeavor Foundation
Jessie Ball DuPont Fund
Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation

Three firms have donated a day of their expert service to the campaign:

John Lawlor of The Lawlor Group
Robert Sevier of Stamats
Ruth Sims of Noel-Levitz

Liberal Arts Symposium

​“The Liberal Arts in Action” symposium featured speakers who are alumni of small, independent colleges that emphasize the liberal arts. The stories of these graduates’ lives illustrate vividly the important role that liberal arts education plays in advancing innovation, entrepreneurship, and success in our society across diverse fields of endeavor—and how it contributes to a meaningful and satisfying life for the individual. The symposium provided an important opportunity for their voices to be both heard and amplified.

View program information and resources.

Visit the Liberal Arts Life website.

Contact Information

​CIC welcomes suggestions, questions, and offers of assistance regarding the campaign. For more information, contact Jo Ellen Parker, CIC senior vice president, at or (202) 466-7230.