June 15, 2009, Blue Bell/Pottstown, Pa.— Dr. Karen A. Stout, president of Montgomery County Community College, was presented with the first-ever Mayor Michael Di’Nunzio Award for Excellence by the International Club of the Lansdale Public Library. The presentation was made during the recent appreciation dinner for the volunteers and sponsors of the 18th annual International Spring Festival. The award recognizes Dr. Stout’s commitment to diversity during her tenure as president of Montgomery County Community College.
Dr. Stout has served as president of Montgomery County Community College since 2001. The percentage of minority students enrolled at the college has increased by close to 60 percent under her leadership, and now comprises more than 21 percent of the total student population. Dr. Stout has led the college in the development of a strategic plan that is committed to building a learning environment that fully appreciates diversity and supports equal access and opportunities for all students and employees. She also established the President’s Advisory Council on Diversity, a group that meets quarterly and is comprised of leaders from throughout the community, to advise on the college’s diversity and multicultural initiatives and activities.
Also under Dr. Stout’s leadership, the college was awarded its first-ever international Fulbright Visiting Scholar in 2006, which brought a history professor from Brazil to the College for a full semester. A year later, the college was awarded another Fulbright Scholar from Malaysia under a special program promoting “Access to the Muslim World.” In addition to bringing international scholars to campus, the college also launched a study abroad summer program, affording students with the opportunity to study art, history and foreign languages in Italy and Spain.
Last year, the college launched a Faculty Diversity Fellowship program to promote the goals of increasing the racial and ethnic diversity of its faculty and broadening access to the college-teaching profession to qualified minority scholars. The program is designed to promote and support the careers of exceptional minority junior faculty. Each year, an individual is selected for the fellowship, enabling them to join the college’s faculty as a full-time instructor for one year with a reduced teaching load and mentoring opportunities.
Dr. Stout earned her doctorate in educational leadership from the University of Delaware. She also holds a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Delaware and a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Baltimore. She has also completed professional development programs in higher education leadership at Harvard University.