Great Lakes Colleges Association

Strengthening Education in the Tradition of the Liberal Arts

Global Liberal Arts Alliance

Kalamazoo College Provost Named Eighth President of the Great Lakes Colleges Association


Kalamazoo College Provost Named Eighth President
of the Great Lakes Colleges Association

cDUGAL Michael McDonald 2016 6711  (photo by Anthony Dugal)

The Great Lakes Colleges Association (GLCA) Board of Directors announces that Michael A. (Mickey) McDonald will become the eighth President of the consortium in its 55-year history, effective July 2018. He brings to this role 25 years of experience both as a faculty member and administrator at liberal arts colleges.

The selection of McDonald was the result of a national search beginning in the spring of 2017, shortly after the current President, Richard A. Detweiler, announced he would retire from the position following more than a dozen years of service.  The search committee, including member college presidents and other campus representatives, was led by Chair of the Board of Directors and President of Allegheny College James H. Mullen, Jr. McDonald was chosen for the position out of a highly selective pool from across the United States.

“Throughout the selection process,” Chair Mullen said, “our committee worked to identify a candidate who conveyed an understanding of the GLCA and a desire to build on what it has created.  We looked for a person who clearly understood the mission and values of the GLCA, and who exhibited a deep commitment to liberal arts education and what it stands for. Dr. McDonald emerged as this candidate, and we are delighted to welcome him as our next President.”

McDonald’s experience and values align closely with the goals of this consortium of selective Midwest liberal arts colleges; he sees this position as a chance to contribute to the vitality of liberal arts colleges on a broader scale.  “I am humbled and thrilled to serve as President of the GLCA,” said McDonald, adding, “I am excited about collaboratively advancing our commitments to the centrality of the liberal arts in today’s world and promoting its role in preparing our students to be leaders, entrepreneurs and effective global citizens.”

A graduate of Davidson College and Duke University, McDonald was a faculty member of mathematics from 1993 to 2008 at Occidental College, where he also served in several administrative leadership roles. He was an American Council on Education (ACE) Fellow in 2001-2002. 

For the past ten years, McDonald has served as Provost of Kalamazoo College in Kalamazoo, Michigan.  During this time, he has hired approximately one-third of the faculty at the College and increased the proportion of women and faculty of color in tenure-line positions. He helped secure more than $3.25 million in grants from major foundations including, among others, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Sherman-Fairchild Foundation, National Science Foundation, the Herbert H. and Grace A. Dow Foundation, and the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE). In collaboration with the College’s President and others, he worked to envision and establish the Arcus Center for Social Justice Leadership, now supported by a $20 million endowment from the Arcus Foundation. He also served as Kalamazoo College’s Acting President in winter 2014 and is co-chairing the College’s current strategic planning initiative. 

As Provost of a GLCA member college at which 70 percent of students engage in off-campus study, McDonald places a strong emphasis on international and intercultural learning as a component of liberal arts education.  He has been an active participant in the Global Liberal Arts Alliance (GLAA), a program providing opportunities for collaboration and development to faculty and staff of GLCA’s 13 member colleges in addition to 16 independent higher education institutions in different parts of the world.  McDonald has called the GLAA “an incredibly unique opportunity” for faculty and leaders of participating colleges to enrich intercultural knowledge and understanding in the liberal arts.



Jim Mullen, Allegheny College and Rick Detweiler, GLCA, welcome Mickey as the Eighth GLCA President with small tokens at the last GLCA Board of Directors Meeting.  

mullen mcdonald     detweiler mcdonald

(photos by Charla White)





Allegheny to Host 2017 SOCLC


Going Back to Our Roots

Fill out the registration form here:

We are able to host 15 students from each school. We are also inviting a couple of the local schools near Meadville to send a few students.

We have a hard cap of 250 total. If it looks like we will have extra spots, I will let y'all know closer to the date. If we end up being able to accommodate over the 15 for each school, then it will be a $60 per person fee to cover a portion of the expenses.

Facebook event with updates:

Additional Information:



Friday (Nov 3):

4-6: Registration (Schultz East Alcove) - Write postcards to LGBTQ people living in prison

6pm: Dinner (Caribbean Buffet)  Keynote: Bilal Ansari (Schultz)

9pm: Jason Hernandez - WITH POPCORN (Quigley) 

Saturday (Nov 4):

Rosa and Carina lead a morning stroll on the trails at Robinson Field

8-9:30: Breakfast (Schultz)

9:30-10:30: Workshop 1 sessions

10:45-12: Campus Issue Roundtables

12-1:30: Lunch (Indian Buffet)  (Schultz)

1:30-2:30: Workshop 2 sessions

2:30-3:15: Self-care break (with some outdoor games and indoor art/games)

3:15-4:15: Professor Valerie Prince's Waterbearer (OPTIONAL) 

3:15-4:15 Workshop with  Bomba con Buya (OPTIONAL)

4:15-5:30: Self-care break (with some outdoor games)

5:30-7: Dinner (Soul Food) Keynote: Donna Murch (Schultz)

7-9: Free time and chill activities (Set up dance party) (Capture the flag, indoor art - fire and smores) 

9-12: Dance Party (Schultz) - with Bomba con Buya  

Confirmed Keynotes:

Jason Hernandez:

Jason Hernandez, at the age of 21, was sentenced to life without parole for a non-violent drug offense in 1998. While incarcerated Jason began a grassroots sentencing advocacy organization called Crack Open The Door. In 2013 Jason became one of the first individuals to receive clemency from President Barack Obama, known as "The Obama 8." Since his release he has been a leading advocate for criminal justice reform. He has been featured in Time Magazine, Huffington Post, MSNBC, and CNN.

Bilal Ansari:

Bilal Ansari is an Imam and community organizer. He is also a College and Prison chaplain. Bilal is the former Dean of Students at Zaytuna College and a doctoral student at the Pacific School of Religion. He has studied with numerous Muslim scholars in America. He is a former prison chaplain and has been an urban and rural community organizer for the past two decades.

Donna Murch:

Donna Murch is associate professor of history at Rutgers University. She is currently
completing a new trade press book entitled Crack in Los Angeles: Policing the Crisis and
the War on Drugs. She also has a forthcoming books of essays that will be published later
this year entitled, Assata Taught Me: State Violence, Mass Incarceration and the
Movement for Black Lives. In October 2010, Murch published the award-winning
monograph Living for the City: Migration, Education and the Rise of the Black Panther
Party in Oakland, California with the University of North Carolina Press, which won the
Phillis Wheatley prize in December 2011. She has written for the Sunday Washington
Post, New Republic, Nation, Boston Review, Jacobin, Black Scholar, Souls, the Journal
of Urban History, Journal of American History, Perspectives and New Politics and
appeared on BBC, CNN, Democracy Now and in Stanley Nelson’s documentary, Black
Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution.

Bomba con Buya: 

Buya, a Chicago-based ensemble which aims to preserve and advance Bomba which is Puerto Rico's oldest surviving African-Rooted Tradition. Buya means ‘good spirit’ in Taino, the language spoken among Puerto Rico’s indigenous population. We strive to embody this idea. Through performances, workshops, and community engagement, Buya aims to preserve and advance the bomba tradition. This includes artistic dialogue with historians and performers from Puerto Rico, and collaborative work with various Chicago-based musicians and dancers from Belize (Laruni Hati), Haiti (Tamboula), and Mexico (JaroChicanos).

Logistics - 

Transportation from hotel to college is attendees responsibility.

Room blocks have been established at:

Holiday Inn Express - $89 (MUST CALL - Code: GLCA Students of Color Leadership Conference) must book by October 20, 2017

Hampton Inn - Rate: $139 (Can book online or call - Code: GLC) - must book by October 20, 2017

Fill out the registration form here:

GLCA Joint DACA Statement

Click here to read the GLCA Joint DACA Statement entitled "Pathways for Childhood Arrivals"

Wooster Hosts 2017 ILiADS Institute

Institute for Liberal Arts Digital Scholarship (ILiADS)

July 30 - Aug 4, 2017 at the College of Wooster

Please see our website and CFP

When you’re ready, please submit proposals to by 31 March 2017. 

Entering its third iteration, IliADS is a project-based and team-based opportunity for focused support of a digital project – your project – as you work alongside other colleagues and experts. Along the way, ILiADS gives institute participants an opportunity to explore the broad questions that frame digital scholarship. You know that feeling at the end of a conference, when you’re tired but full of energizing ideas? ILiADS will give you something to do with that energy! Dating back to the first ILiADS, held at Hamilton College in 2015, the institute has consistently provided project participants with an opportunity to “focus as a project team” in the planning and development of digital teaching and/or research projects in a setting that “fills a gap in our current professional development milieu.”

ILiADS offers participants a summer institute where they may develop projects in their teams of faculty, students, librarians, and (or) technologists. One of the great boons of ILiADS is that they are able to do so alongside a dozen or so other teams from across the country (sometimes across the globe). An important additional benefit of this devoted and often interactive project time, teams also work with our pool of ILiADS Liaisons who provide help with technologies, projects’ guidance, and digital scholarship methods.

In this third year of growth, ILiADS remains true to its traditional recognition of the role digital scholarship plays in undergraduate education. We are grateful to have been the forum out of which the Undergraduate Network for Research in the Humanities (UNRH) has grown, itself an opportunity created and run by students who offer a yearly conference to showcase innovative undergraduate research. As we remain focused on meaningful student involvement in ILiADS projects, our review committee will give priority to proposals that include student collaborators.

ILiADS does not run on registrations alone; many of the costs are covered by Academic Partners and event sponsorships. If you’d like to learn more about opportunities to help sustain ILiADS into the future, look for information on our website or email us

The Global Liberal Arts Alliance
535 West William Suite 301
Ann Arbor, MI 48103
Voice: +1.734.661.2350
Facsimile: +1.734.661.2349

Map & Directions

Great Lakes Colleges Association

Strengthening Education in the Tradition of the Liberal Arts

The Great Lakes Colleges Association
535 West William. Suite 301
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48103

+1.734.661.2350 (voice)
+1.734.661.2349 (fax)