February 27, 2023
In the World

Mentoring Future Women Leaders

ACE selects Wittenberg advancement vice president for new initiative

Wittenberg Vice President for Advancement and Alumni Engagement Rebecca Kocher has been selected as one of 30 women for a new mentoring program for women leaders in higher education through the American Council on Education (ACE).

This first-of-its-kind program, the Women's Leadership Mentoring Program was launched by ACE in an effort to increase the number and diversity of women serving in executive-level positions at institutions and on governing boards.

“I’m excited to help break barriers for other women,” Kocher said. “All participants will have an opportunity to address and reflect on the complex roles of women leaders, broaden their understanding of the scope of leadership responsibility, and collaborate on mentee and mentor goals and expectations. I am thrilled to be selected to be a mentor for the inaugural ACE Women Leaders in Higher Ed program. It is a great opportunity, and we’ve already hit the ground running.”

The program runs from January to June of 2023 and matches 30 pairs of mentors and mentees to engage in at least five virtual sessions over the course of the program. It also provides an opportunity for women to engage in a mutually beneficial relationship designed to develop interpersonal and collaborative partnerships. Participants can share and capture experiences and strategies that have helped to propel women to thrive in senior- and executive-level positions. Mentors include presidents, vice presidents, deans, associate vice presidents, and other cabinet-level positions currently employed by an ACE member institution or organization.

In her role at Wittenberg, Kocher is responsible for leading alumni engagement and all fundraising efforts, most recently helping the University successfully launch its $100-million Having Light comprehensive campaign – an endeavor which surpassed its goal nine months ahead of schedule and runs through June of 2023. Passionate about developing, implementing, and analyzing strategies to expand outreach with limited resources, Kocher brings extensive experience in relationship-building and cross-divisional collaboration. With more than 17 years of experience in higher education fundraising, Kocher understands and embraces the value of creating a metric-driven environment that includes calculated levels of accountability and a high-touch modeling method. She recently served as chair and helped present a three-day campaign workshop in December for the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) with plans to chair again this year. The CASE Campaigns Workshop hosted attendees from four countries, representing more than 70 different institutions on Dec. 5-7, 2022, in Chicago, Illinois.

According to its website, ACE is a membership organization that mobilizes the higher education community to shape effective public policy and foster innovative, high-quality practice. As the major coordinating body for the nation’s colleges and universities, its strength lies in the diverse membership of more than 1,700 colleges and universities, related associations, and other organizations in America and abroad. ACE is the only major higher education association to represent all types of U.S. accredited, degree-granting institutions: two-year and four-year, public and private with members educating two out of every three students in all accredited, degree-granting U.S. institutions.

ACE convenes, organizes, mobilizes, and leads advocacy efforts that shape effective public policy and help colleges and universities best serve their students, their communities, and the wider public good and has played a major role in shaping higher education in the United States since its founding in 1918. For additional information on ACE and the mentoring program, click here.

Cindy Holbrook
Cindy Holbrook
Senior Communications Assistant

About Wittenberg

Wittenberg's curriculum has centered on the liberal arts as an education that develops the individual's capacity to think, read, and communicate with precision, understanding, and imagination. We are dedicated to active, engaged learning in the core disciplines of the arts and sciences and in pre-professional education grounded in the liberal arts. Known for the quality of our faculty and their teaching, Wittenberg has more Ohio Professors of the Year than any four-year institution in the state. The university has also been recognized nationally for excellence in community service, sustainability, and intercollegiate athletics. Located among the beautiful rolling hills and hollows of Springfield, Ohio, Wittenberg offers more than 100 majors, minors and special programs, enviable student-faculty research opportunities, a unique student success center, service and study options close to home and abroad, a stellar athletics tradition, and successful career preparation.

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