President's corner

April 4, 2023 (Volume 46, Number 15)

President Mantella smiles at woman to her left while on stage during a panel discussion

President Philomena V. Mantella smiles during a response by Ana Ramirez-Saenz, foreground, during a forum discussion hosted by the Economic Club of Grand Rapids.

Photo Credit: Kendra Stanley-Mills

President Philomena V. Mantella joined three CEOs on a panel to discuss leading their organizations during a March 27 event hosted by the Economic Club of Grand Rapids at the JW Marriott. 

Mantella was asked about the role higher education plays in addressing the talent gap. She said adaptability is key.

“Higher education should be fundamental to addressing the talent gap,” said Mantella. “What’s really important is that higher education has to be open to collaborating with businesses on the development of curriculum, and how (students’) competencies are best built.”

Other panelists were Terry Barclay, president and CEO of Inforum; Sara Armbruster, president and CEO of Steelcase; and Ana Ramirez-Saenz, CEO and founder of La Fuente Consulting.

They agreed that the current uncertainty surrounding the economic landscape following COVID-19 is a terrific opportunity for growth and exploration. Mantella pointed to GVSU’s future via its Reach Higher 2025 initiative, focusing on empowering students with their education, promoting a lifetime of learning and embracing a culture of educational equity.

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This article was last edited on March 29, 2023 at 9:22 a.m.

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