The American Association of State Colleges and Universities has chosen Indiana University Northwest's Vicki Román-Lagunas for its 2023 Millennium Leadership Initiative program.
The executive vice chancellor for academic affairs will join a class of 29 higher education professionals in Washington, D.C., this month. The program offers participants a “realistic look” at what leadership positions in higher education require at the top level.
“This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to enhance my academic expertise and experiences to further enrich the Northwest campus, the most diverse campus within IU,” said Román-Lagunas in a press release.
For six years, she has been part of the team that oversees the academic and student life of students on campus. She led efforts to make IUN a Hispanic and Minority Serving Institution, which resulted in $8 million in federal grants.
The MLI program began in 1999 and has since trained almost 700 people. Many of the graduates have gone on to become university presidents or chancellors. IU Northwest Chancellor Ken Iwama is among them. He is a 2014 MLI graduate.
“The MLI program offers an invaluable opportunity for individuals, including myself, who have historically not advanced to the role of president or chancellor,” said Iwama, who also is a member of the initiative’s national executive steering committee. “The impact of this program is significant as it helps to build a strong pipeline of academic leadership that reflects the increased diversity of students enrolled in higher education institutions — first generation, low-income and students from historically under-represented backgrounds.”
Before joining IUN, Román-Lagunas was acting provost and professor of Spanish at Northeastern Illinois University in Chicago. She earned a doctorate in Latin American literature and culture from Florida State University, and degrees in Spanish from the University of Arizona and College of William and Mary.
The MLI program was created to help cultivate more diverse candidates for leadership roles in higher education.
IUN is one of seven campuses of Indiana University. It serves more than 5,000 students.