Please join The Writers’ Exchange in congratulating Dr. Mike Bills in the successful completion of his dissertation:


Turning Around Small, Private, Tuition Dependent Colleges: How Boards of Trustees Impact Decline and Turnaround


Dr. Mike Bills’s research explores how boards of trustees at small, private, tuition dependent colleges contribute to decline and turnaround. Before COVID-19 many of these institutions were at risk of closing, that risk has only increased since. Boards of these institutions are going to have to embrace change to survive.


WEX is always interested in learning from successful writers about their process. Here, Dr. Mike Bills shares a few pointers:


How has WEX professional coaching/editing support promoted your academic and/or professional success?

My dissertation came back from its first review from WEX in a sea of red. I was overwhelmed by the formatting issues, and tackling them myself seemed harder than the research described within. Having the WEX editors repair my broken document was essential to me getting over the finish line.


What advice would you give to others writing a dissertation?

Use all of the resources available to help you: cohort members, advisor, chair, and librarian. Work with them early and often.


What are your next steps in your academic/professional career?

Step 1 is to take what I have learned and use it to help the college board on which I serve become capable of leading a turnaround of our institutions. Step 2 is to present my work to the relevant associations for college and university boards and presidents. Step 3 is to work with other college/university boards.


Michael Bills, PhD, Graduate School in Leadership & Change, Antioch University