2020 Dallas Herring Lecture

On Tuesday, November 10th, Dr. Pam Eddinger of Bunker Hill Community College (MA) virtually delivered the 2020 Dallas Herring Lecture under the title of Insights from the Pandemic: The Reckoning and the Hope at Our Nation’s Community Colleges. In addition to the above quote, Dr. Eddinger pointed out that the pandemic has “also shown us a radical transformation in the nature of community colleges.” A panel discussion by Dr. Kandi Deitemeyer, president of Central Piedmont Community College (NC), Dr. Avis Proctor, president of Harper College (IL), and Dr. William Serrata, president of El Paso County Community College (TX) followed the lecture.

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Interested in quickly learning more about this year’s event? The articles from our colleagues below provide a comprehensive recap of both the lecture and panel discussion:


What is the Dallas Herring Lecture?

NC State’s College of Education hosts this annual lecture in honor of W. Dallas Herring, whose transformative vision and tireless work culminated in the inception of North Carolina’s community colleges. It invites top community college leaders to speak on urgent and emerging topics, framing how to address the issues and proposing a path forward.

Dallas Herring Lectures

(2020) Dr. Pam Eddinger: "Insights from the Pandemic: The Reckoning and the Hope at Our Nation’s Community Colleges"

As Dr. Pam Eddinger, President of Bunker Hill Community College, pointed out in her 2020 lecture, “Our students are not broken. They are navigating a broken system.” Her lecture explored the pandemic as a simultaneous moment of reckoning and hope for our nation’s community colleges.

(2017) Dr. Eduardo Padrón: “Growing Inequality and Declining Economic Mobility, the Twin Challenges of Our Time: What Leaders of Higher Education Can Do”

"Will we be an engine of inequality or the best hope of people trying to build lives in this new America?" said Miami Dade College President Eduardo Padrón in his 2017 Dallas Herring Lecture.

(2019) Dr. Sanford "Sandy" Shugart: “Ecosystem Thinking in Higher Education: The Future of Transfer”

Valencia College President, Dr. Sandy Shugart, emphasized, "As the needs of society have changed and program mixes across higher education systems evolved to meet these changing demands, transfer as a feature of the systems and of American college students’ experience has grown remarkably in scale and importance..."

(2016) Dr. Josh Wyner: “Community College 3.0: What’s Next for the Student Success Agenda?”

"Here is the challenge for community colleges over the coming decade and beyond: Can they deliver more degrees of higher quality to a more diverse population without greater public investment?" said Dr. Josh Wyner during the 2016 Dallas Herring Lecture. He is the vice president and executive director of the College Excellence Program at the Aspen Institute.

(2018) Dr. Karen Stout: "The Urgent Case: Centering Teaching and Learning in the Next Generation of Community College Redesign"

"Excellent teaching and support for quality instruction must be at the core of our reform work” as community college leaders, said Achieving the Dream President and CEO Karen Stout during the 2018 Dallas Herring Lecture. How can leaders create a culture of excellent teaching and learning?

(2015) Dr. Ken Ender: "Leadership for the 21st Century Community College”

"The 21st century community college leaders must conceptually view and extend their definition of 'community' as extending beyond the community college campus to K-12, university, and non-profit community-based service partners," said Harper College President Ken Ender in his 2015 Dallas Herring Lecture.

About W. Dallas Herring

Dallas Herring
Dallas Herring

Born in 1916 in Rose Hill, N.C., W. Dallas Herring made it his life’s work to build a system that would serve all of North Carolina’s residents by preparing them for productive work and active citizenship. Herring began his career in public service in 1939, when, at the age of 23, he became the mayor of his hometown, making him the youngest mayor in the country at the time. Beginning in 1955, Herring served on the North Carolina State Board of Education for almost 25 years. For 20 of those years, he served as chairman of the board. During his tenure on the State Board of Education, Herring oversaw the development of a statewide system of technical education institutes that eventually became the North Carolina Community College System. Throughout his career, W. Dallas Herring was always guided by his vision of educational “opportunity for all the people.”