The League for Innovation is proud to feature as its Closing Keynote Speaker a community college leader who has had a significant impact on his or her institution's use of information technology. The sharing of best practices is at the heart of the Conference on Information Technology—community college educators exchanging ideas with each other to help improve student learning—and by featuring a community college practitioner, we believe CIT participants will find this year's closing general session particularly helpful and inspiring. The community college leader serving as this year's Closing Keynote Speaker will be Karen A. Stout.
Dr. Karen A. Stout has served as president of Montgomery County Community College since 2001. As the Philadelphia area’s fifth largest higher educational institution, the college has more than17,000 credit and 14,000 non-credit students at its Blue Bell and Pottstown campuses. The college is nationally recognized for its commitment to student success and academic excellence, use of technology in instruction, and community outreach. Under Dr. Stout’s leadership, the college has introduced new degree and certificate programs in high-demand fields like biotechnology, radiology, and surgical technology; established a Workforce Development and Continuing Education unit that serves the training needs of more than 200 Montgomery County businesses; established an Honors College, study abroad opportunities, a Center for Teaching and Learning, and an associate in fine arts degree program; launched a University Center and forged new core-to-core transfer agreements with partners such as Bucknell, Kutztown, and Cheyney universities; significantly expanded its campus facilities (including the opening of the Central Campus’ Advanced Technology Center in fall 2007) to accommodate a rapidly growing student body (35 percent since 2001); and, increased its public and private fund raising by 200 percent. Dr. Stout’s leadership of the college’s expansion at its West Campus in Pottstown is contributing to the economic renewal of the Borough with the campus growing from 880 credit students to more than 2,300 credit and 2,000 credit students in spring 2008.
Dr. Stout takes a leadership role in a wide range of community organizations and professional associations. Currently, she is the Chair of the Presidents’ Advisory Council to the American Student Association of Community Colleges (ASACC). In 2007, she was appointed by the governor of Pennsylvania to serve on the Tuition Account Program Board. She also serves on the President’s Advisory Board to the Community College Research Center (CCRC), on the Institute for Community College Development Board (ICCD) at Cornell University, as a member of the American Council for Education’s Commission for Women, and on the President’s Council for the American Association of Community College Trustees. From 2005-2007, she served as President of the Pennsylvania Commission for Community Colleges. Her community service includes serving as a Board member for the United Way of Chester County, for the Tri-County Chamber of Commerce and for the Montgomery County Workforce Investment Board.
Dr. Stout has also received a range of academic and community service awards. In 2004, she was awarded the Herbert Middleton Award for Excellence in Community Service by the King of Prussia Chamber of Commerce, the Community Leadership Award by the Greater Valley Forge Transportation Management Authority, and the Service Leadership Award by the Blue Bell Rotary Club. In 2005, she was named as Educator of the Year by the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission for her leadership in advancing diversity initiatives at the college, and she was also named by the Pottstown YWCA as the Educator of the Year in their annual tribute to Exceptional Women for her commitment to advancing access to higher education in the Pottstown area. Also, in 2005, Dr. Stout was named to the University of Delaware’s Alumni Wall of Fame for her outstanding professional and public service achievements. In 2006, Dr. Stout was named President of the Year by ASACC and as the Educator of the Year by the Tri-County Chamber of Commerce.
Dr. Stout is a frequent presenter at regional and national conferences on topics ranging from strategic planning to fundraising to student success to labor relations. She’s recently had articles published in Educause, The Presidency, and Community College Week. Before joining Montgomery County Community College, Dr. Stout served as the Vice President for Institutional Advancement and Enrollment Services at Camden County College and the Rohrer Campus CEO in New Jersey. Dr. Stout holds a doctorate in educational leadership from the University of Delaware, a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Baltimore and a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Delaware.