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These are difficult times for private colleges and universities, and the job of academic leadership has never been more challenging.  Budgets are tight, there’s pressure to add new programs, faculty feel overworked and less involved in university decisions and of course there’s the endless stream of emails and meetings.  It’s no wonder that the average tenure for deans and provosts is only five years.


Of course, it would be great if all universities could enroll more students and raise more money.  But in the meantime, our task is to thrive now, amid the challenges, not in spite of them.


Ostrander Academic Consulting helps colleges and universities thrive by building healthy relationships, both internally and externally, and becoming more efficient at what they do.  It’s based on a simple concept: The same qualities that enable us to thrive in our personal lives are what help colleges and universities to thrive as well.


The true health of a university is best measured not by the amount of resources it possesses but by the quality of the relationships among its members. A thriving university is one in which faculty and administrators work well together and the institution has mutually-beneficial partnerships with other organizations.  Moreover, collaboration with others enables wise decision-making that is essential in today’s academic environment.  Thriving comes through teamwork.


Colleges thrive when they focus on the essentials of their mission and use those essentials to streamline their programs and processes.  Thriving comes through achieving greater simplicity and efficiency in our academic structures; in knowing what to stop doing as much as what to start doing.  And simplicity creates the breathing spaces where faculty can function as true academicians and administrators can flourish in their work rather than just surviving from one meeting to the next.

Higher education is a challenging and competitive environment.  Ostrander Academic Consulting helps colleges and universities thrive where they are through teamwork and simplicity.


Dr. Rick Ostrander
26 W. Anapamu
Santa Barbara, CA  93101


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