Deans Summit

The Deans Summit propels innovation among schools of public service and the field of public service education.

Deans Summit
Deans Summit 2023 Full Room Photo


The Deans Summit was founded out of a belief that broadening the reach and impact of public service education requires ingenuity and collaboration. The Deans Summit provides a space for deans and directors of the nation’s schools of public service to shed competitive posture in favor of collective action, and is a powerful vehicle to propel innovation among schools and the field of public service education writ large. 

As a collaborative network, schools of public service have the responsibility and wherewithal to influence the future of public service education. Deans Summit members worked together to identify collective principles that represent our shared values and guide future collaborative endeavors. Read the Statement of Values in full here.

2024 Priorities

The Deans Summit convenes annually to establish a set of collective priorities for the coming year. 

Deans Summit 2023 - Susan Gooden David Van Slyke

Addressing Structural Racism

Deans Summit members are exploring specific actions deans and directors can take to address structural racism on campus. This past year, the working group focused largely on understanding the racial makeup of faculty of schools of public service, specifically within leadership positions. Beyond assessing racial disparities within the field’s leadership, the group has sought to implement strategies to diversify the leadership pipeline into schools of public service. Subsequent areas of focus may include creating new networking opportunities for students from diverse backgrounds or establishing innovative antiracist programming. 

Co-chairs: Susan Gooden and David Van Slyke

Dean Defrancesco Soto speaking at podium

Leading Across Difference

At a time of hyper-polarization, political protest, and prevalent online debate, schools of public service are uniquely positioned to respond. This working group is exploring innovative, collaborative ways to leverage courses and programs at schools of public service that teach students to lead across personal and political divides.

Co-chairs: Victoria DeFrancesco Soto and Ramayya Krishnan

Dean Trevor Brown speaks to group of deans at NASPAA

Military Service to Public Service

Military service is a natural pathway into civilian public service and schools of public service stand ready to facilitate the transition. In constructing a military to civilian service pipeline, the field stands to gain a politically, socio-economically, and racially diverse group of students that embody public service values. In this working group, Deans Summit members are considering ways schools of public service can more effectively engage military and military-connected students in graduate and professional degree programs. 

Chair: Trevor Brown

Deans Summit Steering Committee July 2024

Meet the Steering Committee

Carissa Slotterback, University of Pittsburgh, Chair

Matthew Auer, University of Georgia

Colleen L. Barry, Cornell University

Nisha Botchwey, University of Minnesota

Trevor Brown, The Ohio State University

Victoria DeFrancesco Soto, University of Arkansas

Susan Gooden, Virginia Commonwealth University

Ramayya Krishnan, Carnegie Mellon University

Jodi Sandfort, University of Washington

Ian Solomon, University of Virginia

David Van Slyke, Syracuse University

David Wilson, University of California, Berkeley

Deans Summit Active Members

American University

Pardee RAND Graduate School 

University of Central Florida

Arizona State University

Pepperdine University

University of Chicago

Baruch College

Rutgers University–New Brunswick

University of Connecticut

Binghamton University

Rutgers University–Newark

University of Delaware

Boise State University

Syracuse University

University of Denver

Boston University

Texas A&M University System

University of Houston

Brandeis University

The City College of New York

University of Illinois Chicago

Carnegie Mellon University 

The Ohio State University

University of Illinois Springfield

Cleveland State University

The Pennsylvania State University

University of Iowa

 Cornell University

The University of Arizona

University of Kentucky

Duke University

The University of Georgia

University of Maryland

Florida International University 

The University of Kansas

 University of Massachusetts Amherst

Florida State University 

The University of New Mexico

University of Michigan

George Mason University

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

University of Minnesota

George Washington University

The University of Texas at Austin

University of Missouri

Georgetown University

The University of Texas at Dallas

University of Nebraska Omaha

Georgia Institute of Technology 

Thomas Edison State University

University of Pittsburgh

Georgia State University

Tulane University

University of Virginia

Indiana University Bloomington

University at Albany - SUNY

University of Washington

New York University

University of Arkansas

 University of Wisconsin–Madison

Northeastern University

University of Baltimore

Virginia Commonwealth University

Old Dominion University

University of California, Berkeley

William & Mary

Oregon State University

University of California, Riverside



Deans Summit Initiatives

Through Deans Summit working groups, collaborative efforts and pilots evolve into freestanding spin-off programs. Four such initiatives have already taken shape.