Dr. Rick Aman, president of the newly created College of Eastern Idaho, has been appointed by Idaho Gov. C.L. (“Butch”) Otter to the governing body of the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE), the primary regional higher education agency serving a population of 80 million across 16 member states and territories.
In this role, which carries a four-year term, Aman will be one of three Idaho representatives governing WICHE’s robust and diverse portfolio of higher education programs, research, and policy work. He will occupy the commission seat previously held by J. Anthony (“Tony”) Fernandez, president of Lewis-Clark College, who retires this year having served WICHE since 2013.
Aman brings 25 years of higher education leadership to the commission. Prior to the College of Eastern Idaho, Aman had been president of Eastern Idaho Technical College and was a vice president for the first years of the College of Western Idaho when founded a decade ago.
“Commissioner Aman’s higher education innovation and leadership, in conjunction with his collegial and collaborative mindset, will be of great service to WICHE and to Idaho’s broad higher education landscape,” Garcia said. “I look forward to his partnership as WICHE serves individuals and communities throughout and beyond the West.
WICHE’s work, in aggregate, improves public higher education affordability, access, and resource-sharing throughout and beyond the Western U.S. Its 48-member commission includes many presidents of two- and four-year colleges and universities, chief higher education executives for most of WICHE’s member states, and other legislative and higher education leaders. “WICHE blends diverse resources and influences together to help develop a highly skilled population across the West,” Aman said. “Together, we are building better educational opportunities to strengthen families, communities, economies, and culture.
WICHE’s many programs include the Western Undergraduate Exchange, which saves more than 40,000 students over $375 million annually in tuition; a report, Knocking at the College Door, that’s the nation’s preeminent resource for college-demography projections; the WICHE Cooperative for Educational Technologies, the leading U.S. convener for innovation in educational technology; and a Mental Health program that provides behavioral health technical assistance and workforce development for Western institutions and communities. Based in Boulder, Colo., WICHE was established by U.S. Congress in 1953.