President’s Letter

Bob Smither

August 2013

Dear Colleagues:

I hope your summer has been both productive and restful.

The AGLSP board met in June to plan this year’s conference, and I hope you will be able to be with us in Chicago in October. Our theme this year is Urban Gateways: Immigration and the Global City. AGLSP members David Gitomer and Susan Jacobs of DePaul University have planned an exciting program for the conference, including writer Stuart Dybek and immigration activist Dale Asis as featured speakers.

In addition to presentations from our members, this year’s conference has a special session on PhD programs in Liberal Studies and an optional bus and walking tour of the Pilsen neighborhood, an important site in Chicago’s rich immigration history. The conference officially opens the evening of October 10 with a reception followed by Stuart Dybek’s talk, and the banquet and awards ceremony is on Friday evening, October 11.

October 10 is also the day of our pre-conference workshop, which many people regard as one of the most important events at our annual meeting. This year’s topics include the capstone course, assessment in GLS programs, dealing with international students, and developing certificate programs. We will also have a “hands-on” presentation on social media.

Every year I come away from the conference energized by all kinds of new ideas and things to try. I’m sure I’ll feel the same way this year. As I’ve said before, I’ve always found the Association’s members to be some of the most interesting people I’ve met. I hope I see you in Chicago.



Robert Smither
Association of Graduate Liberal Studies Programs
Dean, College of Arts & Sciences
Rollins College