The prestigious Chronicle of Higher of Education has a glowing profile today on a deserving subject -- Dr. Walter Kimbrough, the dynamic president of rebounding Philander Smith College. Unfortunately, it's available only to subscribers, but it details his improvement in Philander's enrollment and in the qualifications, retention and graduation rate of students. The article also raises a frequently asked question:
Mr. Kimbrough has no immediate plans to leave Philander Smith—he wants to see the results of the classes he has helped shape. But at 43 and with a rising profile, he and his staff members know that he won't be there for the rest for his career.
"The longer I stay, the harder I think it will be to turn it over," he says. "It's a really good place."
When that time does come, Mr. Kimbrough says it will be for another historically black institution. While he sees value in being an administrator on a predominantly white campus—being a role model for black students or breaking down stereotypes of black men—he sees the greatest need for what he can provide at an historically black college.
"That need is magnified at HBCU's," he says. "It's on another level."