Thomas J. Snyder serves as president of Ivy Tech Community College, the largest institution of higher education in Indiana and the nation's largest singly-accredited statewide community college system.
Appointed in 2007, President Snyder leads the strategic, academic and operational processes of Indiana's largest and fastest growing college, serving more than 200,000 students annually at 30 campuses and 100 learning centers that provide a full-spectrum of educational resources, transfer credits, associate degrees, workforce training and professional certification.
President Snyder successfully led the college through a 10-year accreditation process. He has been nationally recognized for efforts and achievements, including a feature in The Chronicle of Higher Education as one of seven community college Presidents making a difference and as the 2009 Freedom Award recipient by the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Indiana Holiday Commission for providing major, positive, societal influence in the community.
Snyder was selected by President Barack Obama to serve on a Roundtable on Affordability and Productivity in Higher Education at the White House in Washington, D.C.
The roundtable also included Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, as well as senior White House advisors. The roundtable discussion explored effective practices to promote affordability and productivity in higher education. Only a small group of college presidents was invited to participate and directly engage with President Obama in a candid conversation, designed to explore how America can best restore its leadership in higher education attainment by removing barriers to college access, affordability and success for students.
Ivy Tech Community College subsequently hosted the largest regional U.S. Department of Education summit on community colleges as a follow up to the White House Summit on Community Colleges. More than 200 participants from 13 states joined in the historic sessions which focused on "Partnerships between Community Colleges and Employers" and engaged business and industry throughout the Midwest in addition to participants from higher education and government.
Snyder has served on a panel hosted by the Institute for a Competitive Workforce (ICW), an affiliate of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. He detailed the critical role of higher education and the potential impact of the report from the business community's perspective and how the business community could engage in higher education, and why their involvement is so important.
Snyder recently testified at a hearing of the House Ways and Means Committee about the effect of Obamacare’s 30-hour definition of full-time employment. Snyder noted that Ivy Tech is now limiting the hours of 4,500 adjunct professors to avoid an annual impact of $10-12 million in costs (on top of the $25 million Ivy Tech already spends on health care for staff and faculty). Snyder also mentioned the challenges this presents in promoting adjuncts professors to full-time positions, and in giving students more course offerings. Video of his testimony is posted at http://youtu.be/92aF1kD7syk.
President Snyder's editorials frequently detail the challenges and innovations that are driving community college solutions in national forums, including the Huffington Post and as a CNN panelist, as well as many newspaper articles and television broadcasts statewide. He is a regular guest on Inside Indiana Business, a statewide business, education and economic development program, aired two times per week.
One of four college presidents invited to testify at a hearing on college affordability before the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, President Snyder noted that Ivy Tech costs less, adjusted for inflation, than it did four years ago. By capping the number of required textbooks, providing more online courses, and reducing overhead costs, Ivy Tech is one of the most economical options in higher education available.
Snyder led the advocacy that influenced The Indiana Commission for Higher Education to approve new policies, designed to increase transfer options for Hoosier college students and to improve graduation rates through performance-based funding incentives for the state's colleges and universities. The Commission approved a new general education core transfer certificate that will provide Ivy Tech Community College students with a consistent set of general education requirements to improve successful transfer to Indiana's public four-year colleges.
President Snyder has installed numerous growth and expansion initiatives to meet the future student services requirements. Agreements with Dell and Sprint now provide students with significant computer and cellular phone service discounts. Several new multi-million dollar facilities projects also have been announced and completed statewide.
To upgrade student and community support and focus, he added new senior leadership by appointing the first provost and a vice president of development to lead statewide foundation fundraising initiatives and serve as the senior executive, dedicated to organizational diversity.
President Snyder introduced a comprehensive Accelerating Greatness initiative which combined the expertise of statewide staff and student leadership teams to develop, track and achieve performance and service goals, optimize resources and ensure students achieve their educational benchmarks. Accelerating Greatness achieved the goals to generate new and creative ways for Hoosiers to access value-based workforce training and advance Indiana employers and businesses competitive positions in world markets.
In 2014, that same momentum will drive Student Success 2025, a new initiative which is aligned with national higher education goals to achieve 60 percent postsecondary attainment among working-age adults (25-64) by 2025. The Indiana Commission for Higher Education (CHE) adopted this goal and Ivy Tech will contribute significantly to Indiana’s efforts to achieve this goal. Our big goal at Ivy Tech is to produce 50,000 graduates by 2025.
Additional achievements that chart progress of Ivy Tech’s mission to serve Indiana families with the best college options include:
New construction projects for additional classrooms, parking and student resources to accommodate record double-digit enrollment increases since 2007.
Established a Center for Entrepreneurship as an entry point for the practical application of entrepreneurial skills and ideas.
Awarded 10,000 associate degree or certificate this academic year, the largest number of graduates ever for Ivy Tech.
Announcement of an Indiana Department of Education $720K grant to fund a collaborative effort between the College and three other organizations to better prepare students at two Indianapolis public high schools for college.
Installed cost savings and revenue enhancement initiatives in the last three fiscal years that have generated $24 million in total annual savings and $14.2 million in total one time savings to the college.
Extended tuition freeze for veterans in the upcoming school year.
Recognized as one of the fastest-growing colleges in the U.S.
Ivy Tech enrolled 16,569 Indiana high school students in dual credit this year, a 43.9 percent increase from the number of students enrolled the previous year.
President Snyder named to the first-ever national Education Council, focused on expanding and enhancing the manufacturing workforce.
Efficiency improvements, bookstore restructuring, a statewide call/fulfillment center, costs savings initiatives and joint ventures have generated more than $3 million in new revenue in his first year, plus the most recent consolidation contract to save 30 percent on furniture purchases and recognize minority suppliers.
And under his leadership, Ivy Tech has doubled enrollments, installed student success pathways, added major new facilities, improved operational efficiencies. These initiatives have resulted in positive results ranging from improved graduation rates to upgraded bond ratings from both Standard and Poor's Ratings and Fitch Ratings.
Prior to joining Ivy Tech, President Snyder held Chairman and CEO/President positions at Flagship Energy Systems Center and Delco Remy International, Inc., respectively. During his 11 years at the helm of Delco Remy, he established a new business model and diversified the company from a $500 million automotive parts supplier to $1.3 billion in sales as global leader in truck, off-road and aftermarket products with more than 6,000 employees worldwide.
He began his career at General Motors Corporation, advancing through executive positions in engineering, marketing and sales for automotive batteries, magnetics and electric vehicle components.
Snyder graduated from Kettering University, formerly General Motors Institute in 1967, with a degree in mechanical engineering. Snyder also holds a master's degree in business administration from Indiana University. Snyder also completed a six-year tour of duty with the Air Force with research and development assignments at Vandenberg and Andrews Air Force Bases and the Pentagon.
He serves on the boards of Conexus, Ener1, ESN (Energy Systems Network), Auto Communities Network, The Manufacturing Institute, Midwestern Higher Education Compact, RAMC (Rebuilding America's Middle Class), CICP (Central Indiana Corporate Partnership), MSSC (Manufacturing Skill Standards Council), Academic Advisory Council, National Workforce Solutions Advisory Board, and the Paramount Theatre.