• Board Corner
  • 05.26.23

The AIR Forum Approaches Followed by a Summer of Activities

  • by Karen L. Webber, AIR President

Greetings! As you read this you may be on your way to the 63rd annual Forum in Cleveland. I’m sure we will have a great time filled with many productive learning events, time to catch up with colleagues, and opportunities to enjoy the sights of Cleveland.

The Board of Directors is hosting several sessions at the Forum, and we invite you to attend them all. The Annual Business meeting that takes place at the Forum (May 31, 1:30-2:30 p.m.) signals the time for Board of Directors and Nominations and Election Committee (NEC) member rotations. I owe a large debt of gratitude to Board and NEC members who will roll off on May 31, and I hope that you will help me welcome the newly-elected members to the Board of Directors (Brent Drake, Craig Abbey, Angela Bell, and Deborah Phelps) and NEC (Eric Atchison, Shari Ellertson, and Henry Zheng). Please remember that they serve as representatives for you, and I encourage you to contact them if you have questions, concerns, or kudos for the work of AIR.

AIR Board of Directors at Work

Members of the 2022-2023 Board of Directors remain busy with many important tasks that seek to strengthen IR and our association. The AIR Board maintains several standing committees, including the AIR Awards Committee. Chair Mitch Nesler and his committee members (Timothy Chow, Mike Le, and Dawn Terkla) reviewed and refined criteria for a number of AIR Awards. The changes will take effect in the next cycle, 2023-2024, and we believe the small edits further strengthen and differentiate the awards. I encourage you to review the criteria and nominate a colleague or yourself for one of the awards.

Chaired by Laura Palucki Blake, ad-hoc committee IR & the Future (Eric Atchison, Brent Drake, Jonathan Gagliardi, Maren Hess, Lisa Anh Nguyen, and Karen Vance) worked diligently and, in a matter of a few short months, developed a comprehensive construct of the primary issues that are important drivers and considerations for the future of IR in higher education. Committee members see the potential for further strengthening facets of IR and IE, both in the U.S. and across the world. They see the value of and need for involvement from junior, mid-level, and senior U.S. and international members as well as graduate students in our association to implement the committee’s vision of IR & the future. Laura and her committee will present their work in a session at the Forum on June 1, 4:30-5:15 p.m. Please attend this session if you’re at the Forum and/or look for more information on the website soon after.

I can’t say it enough—I believe that knowledgeable, thoughtful, and savvy IR/IE leaders will move our profession forward. Each day, I’m reminded of many ways in which IR/IE professionals can contribute to informed decision making. As higher education moves forward in how it accomplishes the missions of student learning, research, and knowledge production, IR and IE professionals can and should be actively pursuing their role in decision support. Through the Forum, other AIR professional development activities, and in other learning opportunities on your own, I hope that you continue to learn about and consider the application of new technologies, techniques, and implications in your work environment. Seize your IR day and keep IR and IE at the forefront of campus decision support!