Inspirational Innovation in Higher Education

Aramark’s Leadership Series Explores Higher Education’s Opportunities to Adapt and Evolve

PHILADELPHIA, PA (September 5, 2014) – Aramark, a global leader delivering food, facilities and uniform services, is pleased to announce the release of the 2014-2015 edition of Presidential Perspectives. Now in its ninth year, Presidential Perspectives is a collection of 10 thought provoking chapter essays authored by college and university presidents. This year’s leadership series theme, “Inspirational Innovation,” shares new ideas for programs, operating practices and approaches to address the challenges confronting today’s higher education institutions.

“In this effort, we must see our fellow institutions as allies, not opponents. There is infinite room in American higher education for improvement, expansion and collaboration,” asserts Dr. E. Gordon Gee, President of West Virginia University and author of the series’ foreword. “We must reach out, as never before, to others of good will and common intent. We must initiate wholly new kinds of collaborations that extend our missions more completely and effectively to every corner of our nation and beyond.”

"Higher Education institutions need to innovate in order to recruit and retain students in an increasingly competitive market,” said Brent Franks, Chief Operating Officer for Aramark’s Education business, which serves as publisher and sponsor of the leadership series. “The presidents and institutions featured in this year’sPresidential Perspectives are shifting the paradigm with innovative programs and ideas that can be shared with other institutions."

Facing more debate than ever before, today’s colleges and universities must overcome potential students’ and parents’ skepticism about the value of higher education by creating unique programmatic and institutional solutions.

The first chapter of the series, entitled “Co-Op 2.0: Why Experiential Learning Matters,” and authored by Dr. Santa J. Ono, President of the University of Cincinnati, stresses the positive impact of experiential learning programs on an institution’s success, including higher student satisfaction, retention and graduation rates, as well as stronger community ties.

“In the process of transforming students, experiential learning also leads to a continuous cycle of assessing and improving the curriculum and the institution. The change-agent becomes the deep collaboration that grows between the university or college and the employers, government agencies and non-profit organizations that seek our students and faculty out to address the real problems they face,” explains Dr. Ono.

Dr. Marylouise Fennell, senior counsel for the Council of Independent Colleges and past president of Carlow University, and Dr. Scott D. Miller, president of Bethany College, serve as executive editors of Presidential Perspectives. “We are at a pivotal moment for higher education and now, more than ever, innovation is crucial to moving our industry forward in a positive direction,” said Dr. Fennell. “This compelling leadership series highlights institutions rising to that challenge and opens the door for other colleges and universities to implement new solutions in their programs and practices.”

Contributing thought leaders for this year’s Presidential Perspectives include:

  • E. Gordon Gee, West Virginia University
  • Santa J. Ono, University of Cincinnati
  • John R. Broderick, Old Dominion University
  • Robert C. Helmer, Baldwin Wallace University
  • Renu Khator, University of Houston
  • Patricia A. McGuire, Trinity Washington University
  • Robert E. Johnson, Becker College
  • Karen A. Stout, Montgomery County Community College
  • Walter M. Kimbrough, Dillard University
  • Walter Harrison, University of Hartford
  • Eduardo J. Padrón, Miami Dade College

Beginning in September, one chapter essay of Presidential Perspectives will be released each month, with the series culminating in June 2015. Over 80 current and past chapters can be viewed on- line at or by

About Aramark
Aramark (NYSE: ARMK) is in the customer service business across food, facilities and uniforms, wherever people work, learn, recover and play. United by a passion to serve, our more than 270,000 employees deliver experiences that enrich and nourish the lives of millions of people in 22 countries around the world every day. Aramark is recognized among the Most Admired Companies byFORTUNE and the World’s Most Ethical Companies by the Ethisphere Institute. Learn more at or connect with us onFacebook and Twitter.


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