The Barbara A. Holland Scholar-Administrator Award honors a bold, mid-career scholar-administrator whose leadership and intellectual voice illuminates the transformative power of urban and metropolitan higher education. Holland Scholars are respected, strategic leaders across their institution who are known for contributing to cutting-edge research related to their administrative role. Their scholarship may focus on, but is not limited to, topics such as diversity/equity, campus culture, faculty development, student health and well-being, curricular innovation, research productivity, planning and assessment, student retention and progress, and community engagement. Holland Scholars approach leadership by drawing on literature and research to ignite the potential of their institution to be successful in its mission and goals. They are inquisitive, inclusive and collaborative, and they are driven to ask and answer scholarly questions critical to their field and professional role as evidenced by a record of their own scholarship. They put their scholarship to good use in addressing urgent issues in urban/metropolitan environments. Their work inspires others to do the same.

Scholar Recognition

The Barbara A. Holland Scholar-Administrator Award is recognized at the CUMU Annual Conference. The awardee is expected to submit a paper for consideration for publication in the conference issue of Metropolitan Universities journal. Awardees are provided free registration to the CUMU Annual Conference and an award of $2,000. Awardees may also be invited to participate in other CUMU-sponsored activities.

About Barbara A. Holland

Barbara A. Holland, Ph.D., is a professor, researcher and consultant recognized internationally for her scholarship and expertise on organizational change in higher education with a special focus on the strategic impacts of community engagement as a method of teaching, learning and research. Her current academic affiliations are Distinguished Community Engagement Professor of at University of Nebraska Omaha, and Senior Scholar at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis and University of North Carolina Greensboro. She has served in senior academic administrative roles at several universities in the United States and Australia, held a visiting scholar role in the US Department of Housing and Urban Development headquarters for two years during the Clinton and Bush administrations, and was Executive Director of the federally-funded National Service-Learning Clearinghouse for seven years. The library collection, upon the closing of the Clearinghouse, was moved to the Criss Library at University of Nebraska Omaha in 2011 and is called The Barbara A. Holland Collection for Service-Learning and Community Engagement.

For her many research publications and impacts on the field of engagement, including the “Holland Matrix,” Barbara was the fourth scholar awarded the Research Achievement Award from the International Association for Research on Service-Learning and Community Engagement (2006). In 2008 she was named as one of the first two Honorary Fellows named by the Engagement Australia association. She was Executive Editor of Metropolitan Universities, the journal of the Coalition of Urban and Metropolitan Universities 1998–2016 and continues to serve in editorial roles for three other refereed journals. Since its inception in 2006, she has served as a member of the National Advisory Panel for the Carnegie Foundation Community Engagement Classification program. Barbara is also a frequent keynote speaker at academic conferences and has been invited to be an in-depth consultant and adviser to many academic institutions across six nations.

Barbara earned her Bachelor of Journalism and Master of Arts in Journalism at the University of Missouri, and a Ph.D. in Higher Education Policy at the University of Maryland. In 2017, University of Nebraska Omaha awarded Barbara an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters. She resides in Portland, Oregon.


Henry R. Cunningham, Ph.D., University of Louisville



Patrick M. Green, Ed.D., Loyola University Chicago


Lina Dostilio, Ed.D., University of Pittsburgh

Deirdre Gonsalves-Jackson, Ph.D., Virginia Wesleyan University


Lynn E. Pelco, Ph.D., Virginia Commonwealth University


Euan Hague, Ph.D., DePaul University


emily janke

Emily Janke, Ph.D., UNC Greensboro