Joyce P. Jacobsen

Joyce P. Jacobsen

Joyce P. Jacobsen

President, Hobart and William Smith Colleges

Years in current role: 2

What do you enjoy most about your role?

The role of president allows me to meet and interact with a great many people — faculty, students, staff, alums, parents and community members. I am always interested in their often-different perspectives on issues and about the ways in which we can all work together to make Hobart and William Smith Colleges, Geneva and the Finger Lakes region an even more vibrant place to learn, teach and live.

What has been the biggest challenge you’ve dealt with over the past year?

The pandemic. Our goal was to keep Hobart and William Smith open and in-person, and we were able to do that. This presented a series of logistical issues that were at times challenging. I remain grateful to everyone in our community who did everything possible to ensure that we were able to continue to provide our students with an exceptional education in as safe an environment as possible.

What do you see as the biggest changes in the higher education industry in the next 3-5 years?

The demographic shift in the northeast in particular will be a challenge as we continue to maintain our value proposition as we also improve upon it.

What community organizations do you support as a volunteer and why?

It is the goal of my husband Bill Boyd and me to become involved in as many things as possible in Geneva. This is an extraordinary community in a vibrant and dynamic city, and we consider ourselves lucky to live here.

What college class that you haven’t taken would you be most interested in taking and why?

Psychology 101 so that I can better understand all of the interesting people I interact with daily. I’ve also often thought it would be wonderful to take a summary course in art history.