Presidential Announcement

Cecilia McCormick

Cecilia M. McCormick, J.D.

Cecilia M. McCormick has developed a longstanding career in higher education, focusing on both management operations and strategic direction to grow and improve higher education institutions. She has been fervent in advancing institutional mission and creating an environment that fosters holistic student learning and development.


With more than 25 years of administrative and undergraduate teaching experience in the areas of business, law, and leadership, Cecilia McCormick has a track record of success in leading an institution through innovative change and utilizing strategic planning, prudent financial management, and collaborative governance. Her commitment to serving students and preparing them for professional competence, lifelong learning and civic responsibility has earned her a reputation as a skilled administrator, engaged educator, and community leader.

Cecilia has served at an executive level in academic affairs, financial management, advancement, legal affairs, facilities management, and community and economic development. She currently holds the position of the Vice Provost for Academic Strategy and Special Programs at Thomas Jefferson University where she has successfully developed numerous strategic initiatives and led the academic merger of Thomas Jefferson University + Philadelphia University. Earlier at Jefferson, she served as the Chief of Staff for the Office of Academic Affairs and the Associate Provost for Strategic and Academic Initiatives. At Johns Hopkins University, she was the Chief of Staff to the Senior Vice President for Finance and Administration and Chief Operating Officer. She has also held myriad positions at Widener University, including Executive Director in the Office of the President, functioning as a member of a six person executive team that transformed the mission and vision of the university as well as Dean and Director of the Legal Education Institute at Widener University School of Law, Associate Director of Admissions for the School of Law, and Associate Dean and Dean of Academic Affairs for the School of Business Administration.

Cecilia maintains her license to practice law in the State of Pennsylvania. Her legal experience includes serving as an attorney over a 10-year period with two private law firms in the Philadelphia region. Thereafter, she held the positions of Assistant General Counsel for PECO Energy and special project manager for The Vanguard Group’s Retirement Resource Center.

Cecilia received her Bachelor’s Degree in Management/Marketing from Saint Joseph’s University, her Paralegal Certificate from Widener University, her Juris Doctorate from Delaware Law School: Widener University and a Post-Doctoral Certificate from the Institute of Educational Management at Harvard University, Graduate School of Education.

McCormick resides in Ocean City, New Jersey with her husband, John. Her family includes three sons; Timothy (and his wife Danielle), Daniel (and his wife Heather), and John, and two grandchildren.

Elizabethtown College Presidential History

As Elizabethtown College welcomes our 15th president, Cecilia M. McCormick, J.D., we celebrate the legacy of great leadership that has been foundational to the success of our institution and our graduates. Thanks to the vision and dedication of these men, Elizabethtown College has established a reputation for educational excellence.

2011 – Present
 

Carl Strikwerda

Carl J. Strikwerda is the 14th president of Elizabethtown College, having served previously as dean of arts and sciences at the College of William and Mary and associate dean at the University of Kansas. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Calvin College, a master’s degree from the University of Chicago and a doctorate from the University of Michigan. He regularly teaches a course on “Peace and War in a Global World.”

President Strikwerda has published articles in The Chronicle of Higher Education, The Huffington Post and Inside Higher Ed, as well as three books. He has also published numerous articles on European and global history and a book with Anne-Marie McCartan, “Deans and Development: Making the Case for the Liberal Arts.”

President Strikwerda has served as a historical consultant to the National World War I Museum in Kansas City, Missouri, and serves on boards for the American Association of Colleges and Universities, the Council for European Studies, the Lancaster County Economic Development Company and public radio and TV station witf, Harrisburg.

1996 – 2011
 

Theodore E. Long

Theodore E. Long, fondly known as “Teddy” among students and the faculty and staff, was instrumental in the introduction of Elizabethtown College’s Honors Program, sponsored by The Hershey Company. During his 15-year tenure, academic credentials of the faculty improved dramatically, with 95 percent holding terminal degrees in their field, and enrollment increased by 23 percent, even while admission became more selective. During Long's term, the Masters Center for Science, Mathematics and Engineering and the James B. Hoover Center for Business were built and Bowers Writers House opened. One of Long's major accomplishments was enlarging the College's endowment through a successful fundraising campaign, which generated $26.1 million. He also led a $47 million campaign for capital needs, which enabled the College to add substantially to its academic, athletic and residential facilities.

1985 – 1996
 

Gerhard Ernest Spiegler

Gerhard Ernest Spiegler, nicknamed “The Big Guy” by students on campus, wore the new presidential medallion with the College seal at his inauguration. As one of his first official duties, he ended the Community Congress. During his term, the Young Center for Anabaptist and Pietest Studies was built, Rider Hall was demolished, the Baugher Student Center was renovated; the Schreiber Quadrangle was built, and High Library replaced Zug Memorial Library. After the move to the new building, the library was digitalized and the catalogs of every book were made available online. I.D. cards started functioning as library cards. While Spiegler served as president, “Monday at 10” was created and an environmental science major was added. The Pledge of Integrity was introduced to the College in 1995.

1977 – 1985
 

Mark Chester Ebersole

A graduate of Elizabethtown College, Mark Chester Ebersole not only was president of the College but also was an instructor of Bible and philosophy and director of religious activities. He was married to A.C. Baugher’s daughter, Dorothy. During his presidency, Ebersole mandated that all students live on campus, contending that the college living experience was as important as the academic and social experiences. Ebersole, optimistic about the future of small colleges, was instrumental in renovating the Baugher Student Center and the Gibble Science Hall, which became the Steinman Center for Communications and Art. Under his leadership, the College offered computer science as a new major in fall 1981. During his last year as president, co‐op housing was again offered at Elizabethtown.

1966 – 1977
 

Morley Josiah Mays

Morley Josiah Mays was the first president of Elizabethtown College who had neither graduated nor taught at the College. Mays gained college leadership experience at the University of Chicago, Bridgewater College and Juniata College. He was involved with community work and wrote publications on philosophy, ethics, theology and higher education. The newly designed College flag was first used at his inauguration ceremony, as well as the silver medallion, since worn by every president at ceremonial occasions. The Alumni Physical Education Center, the Living‐Learning Center and the Social Sciences Center were all built during Mays’ presidency. The Art Department also was newly developed.

1961 – 1966
 

Roy Edwin McAuley

Roy Edwin McAuley served as dean from 1956 to 1961. His administrative abilities and distinctive views on academic affairs positively influenced his election as president. During his tenure, a presidential residence was established at Elizabethtown College. Like many of his predecessors, McAuley concentrated on the academic credentials and training of the faculty. He was known for hiring young, well‐qualified professors.

1941 – 1961
 

Charles Abba “A.C.” Baugher

A.C. Baugher, namesake of the Baugher Student Center, was professor of chemistry from 1922 to 1928 and dean of the College from 1928 to 1941. During Baugher’s presidency, there was a marked increase in faculty pursuing higher‐level academic degrees. He was honored as president emeritus of the College.

1929 – 1930
 

Harry Hess Nye

Harry Hess Nye assumed the presidential duties while Ralph Weist Schlosser was on a sabbatical leave. A graduate of Elizabethtown College, he was elected by unanimous vote. During his year of presidential service, Nye maintained existing policies, more specifically outlined the courses of instruction, and took steps to raise the academic levels of the faculty.

1928 – 1929 and 1930 – 1941
 

Ralph Weist Schlosser

Schlosser Residence Hall is named after the sixth College president, Ralph Weist Schlosser. He was elected unanimously for both terms by the Board of Directors. He taught high school subjects as well as languages and English during his time at the College. He was vice president and professor of English from 1918 to 1921 and dean of College from 1922 to 1927. Schlosser was a graduate of Elizabethtown College and was honored in 1962 as president emeritus.

1921 – 1924
 

Jacob Gibble Meyer

Jacob Gibble Meyer was the first president of Elizabethtown to have graduated from the College. He earned a bachelor’s degree in pedagogy. He previously had been the second vice president under Ober and took over presidential duties while Ober was away.

1918 – 1921 and 1924 – 1928
 

Henry Kulp Ober

Henry Kulp Ober was vice president under Reber. Ober, for whom Ober Residence Hall is named, took a break in his terms to pursue his graduate studies at Franklin & Marshall College. Originally, Ober demurred the offer to return as president, but eventually returned and held office until January 1928, when he resigned because of health issues.

1902 – 1904 and 1909 – 1918
 

Daniel Conrad Reber

After a year of holding the position of vice‐principal, Daniel Conrad Reber became president of Elizabethtown College in 1902. Due to the health issues of his predecessor, Reber took on many of the president’s duties during the 1902 – 1903 academic year. While Reber was president, the College transferred ownership from the contributors of funds to the Church of the Brethren of the East and Southern districts of Pennsylvania.

1901 – 1902
 

George Ness Falkenstein

George Ness Falkenstein—who taught Bible, psychology and pedagogy at the College—served as the acting principal, filling in for Isaac Newton Harvey Beahm during the 1900 – 1901 academic year. In Falkenstein’s term, the New College building—now known as Alpha Hall—was built. All college relations were moved to the new building from downtown Elizabethtown. The dedication of Alpha Hall took place in March 1901. After Falkenstein’s term, he continued to teach history, science, psychology and Bible. Falkenstein was elected to a second term as principal, but resigned in September 1902 due to health issues.

1900 – 1902 and 1904 – 1909
 

Isaac Newton Harvey Beahm

Isaac Newton Harvey Beahm was the first principal of Elizabethtown College, but did not perform any duties in this position because of illness. During his first term, the school was located in a small building in downtown Elizabethtown. He was included in the faculty roster as teacher of Bible, psychology and pedagogy. Beahm again was school principal from 1904 to 1909.