About Dr. Minnich

Dr. Elizabeth Kamarck Minnich

Distinguished Fellow, Association of American Colleges & Universities: Office of the President

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Dr. Minnich earned her M.A. and Ph.D. in Philosophy from The Graduate Faculty for Political and Social Science of The New School University in New York, where she was Teaching Assistant for Hannah Arendt. She wrote her dissertation on John Dewey, and has continued to work on political and moral implications, roles, responsibilities of education in and for democracy.

Dr. Elizabeth Minnich has served higher education in different roles at a variety of liberal arts institutions as well as through her writing, speaking, special projects, board memberships, and consulting.

Dr. Minnich’s book, Transforming Knowledge (Temple, 1990), received the Association of American Colleges and Universities’ Frederick W. Ness Award for “best book in liberal learning” of its year. An extensively revised 2nd Edition was published in 2005. In 2005, she co-authored The Fox in the Henhouse: How Privatization Threatens Democracy (with Si Kahn; Berrett-Koehler). Her essays appear in 18 anthologies and 3 textbooks, and she was "scribe" for the Association of American Colleges & Universities’ report, "Liberal Learning and the Arts of Connection for the New Academy," issued by the National Panel on "American Commitments: Diversity, Democracy, and Liberal Learning.” She has served as an editor and author for the AAC&U's journal,"Liberal Learning," published in scholarly journals, and serves on several academic journals’ editorial boards. She was Series Editor for “The New Academy”(anthologies focused on contemporary critical, creative scholarship and teaching) from Temple University Press.

She has been a keynote and plenary speaker at national conferences, including the Association of American Colleges & Universities; the American Council on Education; the Association for General & Liberal Studies; the American Association of Higher Education; the Society for Values in Higher Education; the National Association for Independent Schools; and many others in the U.S. and abroad (Sweden, Hungary, Poland, Norway, Germany, Singapore). From 2009-12, she was Senior Scholar for Elon University's national project on "Teaching Democratic Thinking." In 2011, she gave the keynote for the Third International Conference on Genocide, held that year at California State University,Sacramento, and has spoke elsewhere on "The Evil of Banality/The Banality of Evil."

Her consulting work has taken her to hundreds of colleges, universities, and independent schools, and she has worked with the Ford Foundation, FIPSE, the Kettering Foundation, NEH, the Spencer Foundation, and Carnegie, among other philanthropic organizations. Her volunteer work includes serving as Chair of the North Carolina Humanities Council (1999-2001); board member of the Center for Humans & Nature; and Advisory Board member for both the College of Arts & Sciences and the Center for Medical and Professional Ethics at UNC-Charlotte.

As an academic administrator, she has been a dean and/or director at The New School (now Lang) College; Sarah Lawrence College; Hollins College; and Barnard College on the undergraduate level. She has also been a dean at the Union Institute & University’s Graduate College for Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences. She has taught at all of these institutions.

Special appointments have included Professor of Philosophy & The Humanities - the Hartley Burr Alexander Chair, Scripps College; Visiting Scholar, Scholars & Seminars Program, the Getty Institute for The History of Art and The Humanities; Thomas P. Johnson Distinguished Visiting Professor, Rollins College; the Whichard Visiting Distinguished Professor of Humanities and Women’s Studies, East Carolina University; the Evans Chair at The Evergreen State College.