Higher education governing board in the United States

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In the United States, a board often governs institutions of higher education, including private universities, state universities and community colleges. In each US state, such boards may govern either the state university system, individual colleges and universities, or both. In general they operate as a board of directors, and they vary by formal name, size, powers, and membership. In some states, members are appointed by the governor.

In some private institutions of higher learning, non-governing boards may also be appointed. These boards' members' duties often include but are not limited to major gift cultivation and fundraising.

Board names[edit]


In Missouri the governing board is known as the board of curators.[1]


The governing body at the University of North Carolina, University of Florida[2][3] and Colorado State University system[4] are known as the board of governors. Public institutions in Rhode Island are also governed by a board of governors.

Missouri State University[5] West Virginia University[6] and Marshall University[7] maintain a board of governors.


The Harvard Board of Overseers (more formally The Honorable and Reverend Board of Overseers) is one of Harvard University's two governing boards.


The Regents of the University of California govern the University of California system, with one exception: the original endowment that allowed for the creation of UC's Hastings College of the Law stipulated that it could not be governed by the Regents. However, Hastings Law degrees are issued in the name of the UC Regents.

The Board of Regents of the University of the State of New York oversees all public education, including the State University of New York (SUNY), affiliated community colleges, and the K-12 public school system (run by the New York State Education Department) via the Regents Examinations. High school graduates may receive Regents Scholarships to defray expenses at SUNY universities.

The Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia is the oversight authority for thirty universities and colleges in the state of Georgia (including the University of Georgia and Georgia Institute of Technology) along with the state archives and the state public library system.[8]

The boards of the University of Michigan,[9] University of Minnesota,[10] University of Texas,[11] University of Wisconsin-Madison,[12] Texas A&M, University of Maryland, College Park, University of Colorado, University of New Mexico, and the University of North Texas[13] are known as the board of regents[14]


In the State of Louisiana, the Governing Board of the four Public University Systems are known as the Board of Supervisors [15]


All schools within the Ohio Higher Education System are governed by individual Boards of Trustees, including Miami University and Ohio State University. The governing body at Duke University is known as the board of trustees while each college and the graduate school maintain their own board of visitors[16] The University of South Carolina,[17]Michigan State University[18] and the University of Connecticut[19] are also governed by boards of trustees.


Boards governing public institutions of higher education in the state of Virginia are known as the board of visitors. This includes the The College of William & Mary,[20] University of Virginia,[21] Virginia Tech,[22] James Madison University,[23] Radford University,[24] University of Mary Washington,[25][26] Longwood University[27] George Mason University[28][29] Terminology for private institutions can vary. Regent University once used "board of visitors", but now uses "board of trustees".[30] Washington and Lee University also uses "board of trustees".[31]

Institutions in North Carolina use several different names for their boards. The University of North Carolina—which includes all 16 four-year public institutions in the state, plus a residential high school—is overseen by a board of governors.[3] Some individual campuses within the system, such as East Carolina University,[32] North Carolina State University,[33] and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, have boards of visitors. While Duke University as a whole is governed by a board of trustees, each of its colleges has a board of visitors.[16]

The bodies at the United States Military Academy,[34] United States Air Force Academy,[35] United States Naval Academy[36] and Clemson University[37] are known as the board of visitors.


  1. ^ "http://www.umsystem.edu/curators/"
  2. ^ http://www.flbog.org/
  3. ^ a b "Board of Governors for the University of North Carolina". Northcarolina.edu. Retrieved November 29, 2011. 
  4. ^ "Board of Governors of the Colorado State University System". Csusystem.edu. Retrieved November 29, 2011. 
  5. ^ "Board of Governors – Missouri State University". Missouristate.edu. Retrieved November 29, 2011. 
  6. ^ "Board of Governors | BOG Home". Bog.wvu.edu. September 21, 2011. Retrieved November 29, 2011. 
  7. ^ "Board of Governors". Marshall.edu. June 30, 2011. Retrieved November 29, 2011. 
  8. ^ "Board of Regents - University System of Georgia". Retrieved January 20, 2015. 
  9. ^ "Regents of the University of Michigan". 
  10. ^ "Regents of the University of Minnesota". 
  11. ^ "University of Texas System – Board of Regents". Utsystem.edu. Retrieved November 29, 2011. 
  12. ^ "University of Wisconsin System Board of Regents". uwsa.edu. Retrieved May 23, 2013. 
  13. ^ "UNT System Board of Regents". Untsystem.unt.edu. November 16, 2011. Retrieved November 29, 2011. 
  14. ^ "Board of Regents » The Texas A&M University System". Tamus.edu. February 8, 2011. Retrieved November 29, 2011. 
  15. ^ http://www.lsusystem.edu/index.php/board-of-supervisors/
  16. ^ a b "Board of Trustees at Duke University". Trustees.duke.edu. Retrieved November 29, 2011. 
  17. ^ "USC: Board of Visitors". Trustees.sc.edu. Retrieved November 29, 2011. 
  18. ^ "Board of Trustees - Michigan State University". 
  19. ^ "University of Connecticut Board of Trustees". boardoftrustees.uconn.edu. Retrieved June 19, 2012. 
  20. ^ "Board of Visitors web page of The College of William and Mary". Retrieved 30 September 2014. 
  21. ^ "Board of Visitors web page of the University of Virginia". Virginia.edu. September 27, 2011. Retrieved November 29, 2011. 
  22. ^ "Board of Visitors web page of the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University". Bov.vt.edu. Retrieved November 29, 2011. 
  23. ^ The College of William & Mary. "Administration web page of the College of William and Mary". Wm.edu. Retrieved November 29, 2011. 
  24. ^ "Board of Visitors web page of Radford University". Radford.edu. Retrieved November 29, 2011. 
  25. ^ "James Madison University – Board of Visitors". Jmu.edu. Retrieved November 29, 2011. 
  26. ^ "University of Mary Washington | Board of Visitors Home Page". Umw.edu. Retrieved November 29, 2011. 
  27. ^ "Board of Visitors – Longwood University". Longwood.edu. Retrieved November 29, 2011. 
  28. ^ "George Mason University-Board of Visitors". Bov.gmu.edu. Retrieved November 29, 2011. 
  29. ^ Board of Visitors Christopher Newport University
  30. ^ "About Regent: Board of Trustees". Regent University. Retrieved August 26, 2012. 
  31. ^ "About W&L: Administration". Washington and Lee University. Retrieved August 26, 2012. 
  32. ^ "East Carolina University Board of Visitors". Ecu.edu. Retrieved November 29, 2011. 
  33. ^ "North Carolina State University :: Board of Visitors". Ncsu.edu. Retrieved November 29, 2011. 
  34. ^ "United States Military Academy at West Point". Usma.edu. October 27, 2011. Retrieved November 29, 2011. 
  35. ^ "United States Air Force Academy – BOV". Usafa.af.mil. Retrieved November 29, 2011. 
  36. ^ "Board of Visitors". Usna.edu. October 26, 2011. Retrieved November 29, 2011. 
  37. ^ "Welcome to the Board of Visitors : Clemson University". Clemson.edu. Retrieved November 29, 2011.