The mission of ACAD is to provide academic leaders who share a commitment to student learning and to the ideals of liberal education with networking and professional development opportunities and to support them in their work as educational leaders.

ACAD is committed to the ideals of a liberal education and supports academic leaders in their work.

ACAD supports academic administrators as they strive to promote and support the ideals of a liberal education.

ACAD is a membership driven organization that provides academic leaders with the resources they need to excel in their field

ACAD History

ACAD was established in 1945 as an independent, national, nonprofit organization for academic deans from institutions belonging to the Association of American Colleges (now AAC&U). That restriction was removed in 1968, and membership was opened to all academic officers, regardless of membership with AAC&U.

ACAD has chosen to remain a “conference” of deans—small with intimate gatherings—reflecting a continuing dedication to its founding purpose: to create both formal and informal opportunities for deans to meet, network, and offer professional support to their colleagues in their work as academic leaders. Technology has greatly increased ACAD’s effectiveness as a “conference” as members utilize member only benefits—such as the electronic discussion list—to solve problems, exchange views, and solicit advice from colleagues. Our web site further enhances this capacity by providing membership and meeting information, a member directory, a newsletter, and position announcements.

In addition to holding an annual meeting, in recent years ACAD members have published The Resource Handbook for Academic Deans, and collaborated with other higher education organizations on projects of mutual interest. ACAD events are geared toward representing its membership and offer members and others professional development unique to academic administration.