Dr. Ben Sells – The Changing Landscape of Higher Education

“I think people identify with whoever the president may be. And I think that can have a positive impact as well. And to the extent possible, I’ve tried to be a very engaged president in the lives of our students and faculty, staff, and parents.” – Dr. Ben Sells

Our guest today is Dr. Ben Sells – President of Ouachita Baptist University.  I first met Dr. Sells when I was conducting the president search for a small liberal arts college in the Midwest.  Although he wasn’t the successful candidate, we became friends and have kept in contact with each other over the years.  Recently I had the privilege of work for Dr. Sells when he retained our firm (JobfitMatters Executive Search) to conduct the search for the Vice President for Academic Affairs at Ouachita.

Show Notes

2:19 – Dr. Sells talks about being raised in a home where his dad was a university president and how that probably impacted and influenced his career path

4:09 – Dr. Sells discusses how Higher Education has changes over the years (and yet when he looks back at some of the Board Minutes from when his dad was a college president, they are dealing with a lot of the same issues)

5:32 – His charge by the Board of Trustees at Ouachita Baptist University when he accepted their offer to be the President.

11:31 – Dr. Sells explains his philosophy of making sure that his direct reports are prepared for their next career move

21:00 – The most ambitious project Dr. Sells has undertaken

28:24 – Dr. Sells’ advice to someone who is considering their first college/university presidency’

“One was being a son of a college president from the age. I was five onward. My father was a president of a Christian college, one very similar to the one I’m at now.  I loved what he did and he was good to include me.” -Dr. Ben Sells

Links and Resources

JobfitMatters Website

Next Gen Nonprofit Leadership with Tommy Thomas

Ouachita Baptist University Website

Ouachita Baptist University FB Page


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