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Tony Frank to speak at Colorado higher education forum

Tony Frank, president of Colorado State University, is set to speak on the future of the rapidly changing relationship between education and business.

Frank’s speech will take place as part of the State of Higher Education Forum on April 4 at the History of Colorado Center in Denver. The event will take place from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and is sponsored by Colorado Business Roundtable.


Joining Frank is the Chancellor of the University of Denver, Rebecca Chop, the Chancellor of the University of Colorado, Boulder, Phil Distefano, and the President of Metro State University Denver, Janine Davidson. 

Debbie Hughes, the vice president for the Higher Education and Workforce from the Business Higher Education Forum and national moderator, will moderate the event. 

In an email to The Collegian, Hughes wrote she is in anticipation for hosting the event.

“I look forward to guiding the university presidents through a powerful discussion on how universities are adapting to technology, cost pressures, concerns on value proposition and changes to be more relevant, agile in meeting industry needs,” Hughes wrote. “All while meeting the needs of its diverse student populations

Hughes also commented on the success Colorado Business Roundtable has had working with higher education institutions. 

“(Our work) has resulted in new a renewed sense of responsiveness, urgency and value for postsecondary education in meeting businesses talent needs (nationwide),” Hughes noted. “Colorado has become a national leader in workforce (development in) the digital economy.”

President of Colorado Business Roundtable Jeff Wasden also spoke highly of Tony Frank in an email to The Collegian

“President Tony Frank from CSU was the first President to recognize the value of bringing leaders together and accept the invitation to the State of Higher Ed Forum,” Wasden wrote. 

Wasden also included his goals for the upcoming forum. 


“Our hope is this forum leads beyond an intriguing and powerful discussion (which we know it will) and can be a catalyst for potential change and new partnership with business,” Wasden wrote. 

According to SOURCE, speakers “will discuss their institutions’ successful business partnerships, changes that need to happen in order to be more nimble and agile, how higher education is meeting the needs of industry and the value proposition for students.”


Registration and lunch service for the event begins at 11:30 a.m., with welcoming remarks beginning at noon. The panelists will be introduced shortly afterwards and speak for approximately an hour and 10 minutes. 

While the event is open to the public, tickets are required. Tickets can be purchased online. 


Collegian reporter Meagan Stackpool can be reached at or on Twitter @MeaganStackpool

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