Presidential Renewal Program 6/25/2023 6/25/2023 6/25/20236/28/20236/28/20236/28/2023 Cape Rey Carlsbad Beach Carlsbad, CA

Call for Applications

​The Presidential Renewal program is designed to support the personal renewal of experienced member presidents at CIC institutions who will continue to serve in the vital role of the college presidency.

Applications were due on Friday, January 20, 2023. Up to 12 CIC member presidents will be selected.

Program Goals, Benefits, and Structure

​Effective leadership requires passion for an institution’s mission and a relentless drive to achieve it. Just as a high-performance athlete requires a period of recovery after intense exertion, so presidents must sustain their own leadership momentum with similar attention to rest and recalibration. This program will explicitly address all valences of renewal, from the intellectual scaffolding of a president’s future strategy to the physical, emotional, and spiritual energy required to implement it. In addition to rich content, the seminars will provide space for solitude and reflection with a small fellowship of presidents and partners seeking their own renewal.

Selected participants will take part in the following required elements:

  • An introductory webinar in June 2023;
  • A four-day Summer Seminar in late June 2023;
  • A mid-fall 2023 webinar; and
  • A two-day Winter Seminar in January 2024.

In preparation for the Summer Seminar, participants will respond to a guided personal inventory that takes stock of their personal leadership during the first phase of their presidency and their hopes for the next stage. Between the Summer and Winter Seminars, participants will draft a personal strategic leadership and personal sustainability plan for the next three years. Participants will leave the seminar with a personal roadmap for their own leadership sustainability that addresses concepts of physical strength, work/life balance, and spiritual and vocational engagement.

Seminars and webinars will include readings, discussions, exercises, small-group exchanges, debriefings, the sharing of personal narratives, and opportunities to learn varied practices of renewal. In addition, there will be opportunities for one-on-one consultations with program leaders. These structured opportunities, coupled with space for supportive peer relationships to develop, will provide fertile ground for personal growth and renewal throughout the seven months of the program.


​Applicants in the Presidential Renewal program should be currently serving CIC member presidents who started their term on or before July 2018. They should be interested in a mind, body, and soul exploration of sustainable leadership practices that will support the next chapter of their institution’s history.

Individuals who would contribute to the diversity of perspectives and experiences in the program are especially encouraged to consider participating.

Each cohort will include approximately 12 presidents, and many will participate with a spouse or partner. Spouses and partners are strongly encouraged to engage fully in this exploration. Even though a presidential partner may serve in a variety of capacities within the institution and outside it, including maintaining a separate professional career, the presidency has profound implications for significant relationships and family life.

Program Dates and Cost


June 13, 2023

An introductory session will be held virtually on Tuesday, June 13 from Noon to 3:00 p.m. ET.


June 25–28, 2023

The Summer Seminar will be held at the Cape Rey Carlsbad Beach hotel, which is nestled along the Pacific Coast in Carlsbad, California, just north of San Diego. The seminar will begin at 3:00 p.m. PST on Sunday, June 25, and end at 4:00 p.m. PST on Wednesday, June 28. Please note that participants are required to participate in all aspects of the Summer Seminar and therefore may need to travel the day before and/or after the Seminar.

Outdoor seating with beach view at sunset


January 3–4, 2024

The Winter Seminar will be held at the Diplomat Hotel in Hollywood, Florida, immediately preceding the 2024 Presidents Institute. The Seminar will begin at 8:00 a.m. EST on Wednesday, January 3, necessitating an arrival on Tuesday, January 2.

Thanks to a generous grant from Lilly Endowment Inc., there is no program fee to participate. CIC will provide participants and their spouses/partners all seminar materials as well as meals and lodging at both seminars for the duration of the program dates. In addition, CIC will provide a travel stipend for the Summer Seminar.

Participants are expected to cover all travel costs for the Winter Seminar (which is co-located with the Presidents Institute to reduce travel expenses) and any travel costs exceeding the stipend provided for the Summer Seminar.

Program Leadership

Michael Le Roy and Celeste Schenck serve as co-directors of the Presidential Renewal program.

Michael Le Roy headshotMichael Le Roy is president emeritus of Calvin University in Michigan, having served as president from 2012 to 2022. He previously served as executive vice president, vice president for academic affairs, dean of the faculty, and professor of political science of Whitworth University and as faculty member at Wheaton College. He is principal of Michael Le Roy Associates, an advisor for MyNextSeason, and a member of the Macatawa Bank board of directors. Le Roy is passionate about investing in higher education leaders; he is currently working on a book that will provide leadership guidance to new college and university presidents. In this program, Le Roy is interested in supporting participants to become connected to the origin of the spirit of their work, to think about the connection between personal and physical life and professional sustainability, and to guide a renewed sense of purpose. Le Roy earned his BA in international studies and peace studies from Whitworth College; his PhD in political science, comparative politics, and international relations from Vanderbilt University; and attended the Harvard University Graduate School of Education. He won a Fulbright Award, which supported his research at Gothenburg University in Sweden.

Celeste Schenck headshotCeleste Schenck is president emerita of the American University of Paris, where she previously served as provost, dean, and professor of comparative literature. An expert in global higher education, she founded The American International Consortium of Academic Libraries (AMICAL), a consortium of American universities across Europe, the Middle East, Central Asia and North Africa; and served as president of the Association of American International Colleges and Universities (AAICU), a presidents’ organization spanning American-style universities across the world. Schenck is a Coaches Training Institute (CTI) and Organization Relationship Systems Coaching (ORSC) certified expert interested in supporting mid-to-late career academics. In this program, she is interested in bringing together concepts of storytelling with powerful experiential opportunities to guide participants in creating a roadmap to their next chapter. She is a former member of the CIC Board of Directors and currently serves on the board of the American University of Kurdistan. Schenck earned her BA from Princeton University and her PhD from Brown University. She founded two series in women’s poetry and feminist literary theory, and has published widely on women’s autobiography; modern poetry; critical theory; and on development, educational, and pedagogical issues.

Other program facilitators will include Andrea Nelson Le Roy and Dominique Delor.

Following a formal education and a career in counseling and social work, Andrea Nelson Le Roy was trained in spiritual direction with the Dominican Sisters of Grand Rapids and has been practicing as a spiritual director since 2014. While she was raised in the Protestant tradition, she welcomes the opportunity to work with individuals from all faith backgrounds or those who have little to no experience in organized religion.

Dominique Delor is a medical doctor and longtime director of public health within the French national health system. He has experience managing work-related health in collective situations from schools to major corporations. In retirement, he joins humanitarian missions to Madagascar and Zambia. He is particularly interested in stress management and high-performance aging and looks forward to working holistically with participants eager to improve their physical health and resilience.

Application Details

Applicants received by Friday, January 20, 2023, will be given priority consideration. Applicants will be notified of selection decisions by Friday, February 10.

Presidents of CIC member institutions interested in participating are asked to submit a brief application packet online. Applications consist of the following items:

An online application cover form that includes contact information for the applicant as well as professional and personal information about the applicant, including whether a spouse or partner intends to participate in the program.

A letter of application of no more than two pages prepared by the applicant that describes how they hope this program will meet their expectations for leadership renewal in the context of their own presidential goals for the next three years. The letter should affirm their commitment to attend all sessions of the renewal experience, engage fully in the experience, and support the leadership development of others in the cohort; and

A brief letter of support for their participation in this program from the institution’s board chair.

Contact Information

​Michael Le Roy and Celeste Schenck serve as co-directors of this program. Applicants can direct questions about the program to Michelle Friedman, CIC senior director of programs, by phone at (202) 466-7230 or by email at They can also write to Michael Le Roy at or to Celeste Schenck at