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Transformational Change in Community Colleges


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Table of Contents

  • Dedication
    Foreword-Walter G. Bumphus
  • 1) Creating a Culture for Transformational Change with an Equity Lens
    2) Create a Sense of Urgency for Equity through the Existing OrganizationalCulture
    3) Identify an Equity Coalition through Governance and by Mobilizing Others
    4) Form a Strategic Equity Vision through Governance with Clear Communicationand Intentional Collaboration
    5) Communicate the Equity Vision through and Intentional Collaboration and theGovernance Process
    6) Utilize Institutional Leadership and Collaboration to Empower Employee intoBroad Based Action
    7) Generate short-term wins through Relationship Cultivation
    8) Consolidate Gains Utilizing Institutional Leadership
    9) Anchor Equity in the Culture through Governance and Revamping the InstitutionalInfrastructure (as needed)
    10) Reaping the Reward of an Equity-Centered Institution
    11) Case Studies for Leading Transformational Change with an Equity Lens
    12) Conclusion
  • Appendix1: Institutional Self-Assessment forEquity
    Appendix 2: Kotter's (2004) LeadingChange Model
    Appendix 3: AACC Leadership Competencies(2018)
  • References
    About the Authors

About the Author

Dr. McPhail is Emerita Professor of Higher Education and founder of the Community College Leadership Program at Morgan State University, and former president of Cypress College in California. Both editors are recipients of the AACC National Leadership Award.

Walter G. Bumphus is President and CEO of the American Association of Community Colleges. From 2007 to January 1, 2011, Dr. Bumphus served as a professor in the Community College Leadership Program and as chair of the Department of Educational Administration at the University of Texas at Austin. He also held the A. M. Aikin Regents Endowed Chair in Junior and Community College Education Leadership. He previously served as president of the Louisiana Community and Technical College System (LCTCS) from 2001 to 2007. LCTCS later conferred upon him the title of President Emeritus of the Louisiana Community and Technical College System. From November 2000 to September 2001 he was chancellor of Baton Rouge Community College (BRCC). Prior to joining BRCC, Dr. Bumphus worked in the corporate world serving as President of the Higher Education Division of Voyager Expanded Learning. Six years prior, he served as president of Brookhaven College in Dallas County Community College District.


The pursuit of equitable outcomes at community colleges is no longer optional. As community college personnel become more and more adept at collecting, storing, analyzing, disaggregating, interpreting, and acting on data, equity gaps come into focus and require concerted attention. While no longer optional, identifying, addressing, and redressing equity gaps is no easy task for today's community college leaders. Thankfully, McPhail and Beatty's (2021) book, Transformational Change in Community Colleges: Becoming an Equity-Centered Institution, provides readers with a steady guide through the process of bringing equity into the core of the institution's culture.

New and seasoned community college leaders alike will find familiarity within the book's introduction, as the authors leverage the works of Estella Bensimon (2005), John Kotter (1996), and the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) (2018) to frame the text. Bensimon's work on equity and equity-mindedness is used to establish working definitions. Kotter's change model is used to map out the steps toward becoming equity-centered. And, finally, the AACC leadership competencies are used to show how individual competencies can be deployed in service of Kotter's eight steps. McPhail and Beatty--both with rich experience as community college CEOs--interweave Kotter's eight-step change model and the AACC competencies together to create a vehicle for moving equity to the institutional core. Chapter 1 includes an overview of the text and lays down the theoretical foundation. An "Equity-Centered Transformational Change Framework" is presented visually on page 10, and its eight steps are the focal points of chapters 2 through 9. Early on, the authors argue that equity is taken as a fundamental characteristic of value within (public) higher education. Yet they note the pursuit of equitable outcomes--even coupled with a strong presence of equity-mindedness--does not mean any given institution is equity-centered. Moving equity to the institution's center is the overarching purpose of the framework they explicate in the next eight chapters. To be sure, we enjoyed and appreciated this text. This book is practical and immediately useful. It is a must-read for current and aspirant community college leaders. The book could be used within graduate courses, as part of a grow-your-own leadership program, and by any community college leader charged with spearheading an EOT (not an exhaustive list). McPhail and Beatty have added a critical equity-focused text to the community college leadership canon. Their insights and experience make this book shine with relevance and applicability.--Teachers College Record (1/17/2022 12:00:00 AM)

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