Dr. Jim Catanzaro, Executive Director
Our core mission is to provide corporate clients the opportunity to gain critical assessments of their products and services from a number of the South’s most influential community college leaders thereby helping community colleges achieve their strategic goals. HERDI South college leaders, circa thirty in number, are selected from the eleven states of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS), Virginia to Florida to Texas, representing over 275 community and technical colleges. They form the Higher Education Research and Development Institute South Advisory Board. Six are empaneled for each three-hour encounter with a business client executive team.
All HERDI South meetings are held immediately preceding the Annual Meeting of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.
Here is the way HERDI South panels work: client company executives begin with an opening presentation of 20 to 30 minutes, followed by two and a half hours of candid give-and-take between the six college leaders and company representatives. The client decides the topic and the format in advance, preferably in collaboration with the community college president who chairs the panel.
Client goals are: (1) build collegial, longstanding relationships with selected HERDI South community college leaders; (2) gain direct and candid feedback from these influential administrators on the client’s products/services and marketing strategies; (3) understand the educators’ interests, initiatives, systems and operations; and (4) learn how to do business in the community college sector of American higher education.
College administrator goals are: (1) understand client products/services and what distinguishes them in the higher education marketplace; (2) explore how the client's product/service/strategy might contribute to the improved performance of her/his institution and/or system; and (3) develop productive, long-term relationships with client leaders as well as HERDI South community college colleagues. This last goal is often the most prized.
HERDI South college leaders meet separately the evening before the panels for light refreshments and open sharing. The purposes are to build strong relationships among Board Directors and to prepare for active panel participation the following day.
The evening of the panels all HERDI South educators and their spouses are invited to join business executives at a Reception and Banquet sponsored by one of the participating companies. The Reception and Banquet provide a great opportunity to build relationships and speak candidly with colleagues as well as client representatives.
For community college leaders who are official members of the HERDI South Advisory Board, HERDI South will cover all costs except travel to and from the session’s destination.
Dates of all meetings are listed on the Conferences link.