A Family of Singers

Mark Putnam, Central College president, highlights the sense of community and tradition at Central within the A Cappella Choir.

Jul 12, 2024

Mark Putnam, Central College President

The Responsibility of Global Citizenship

Mark Putnam, Central College president, provides context on the role higher education plays in global citizenship.

Mar 12, 2024

Central College President Mark Putnam

Four Critical Years

Mark Putnam, Central College president, values a four-year college education because it provides opportunity for students to develop the person they will become.

Nov 2, 2023 | 1 Comment

Central president Mark Putnam

Reclaiming Civil Discourse

When we see and hear each other enough to really listen, then despite our disagreements, we share one thing in common – we are citizens of the same community.

Jul 14, 2023 | 2 Comments

That’s Curious

An ambition for lifelong learning embraces curiosity, engages in community and explores widely. This is what opens doors for a lifetime.

Apr 14, 2023

President Mark Putnam checked in with Central students working in Pella on Service Day 2022.

Called To Serve

Service has been a hallmark of Central College for generations. One of the most concrete expressions of this value is the new core curriculum recently adopted by our faculty called “Engaged Citizenship.”

Jan 13, 2023

Central College President Mark Putnam, with 2022 graduate Abigail Lowry.

The Way of Bilbo

Each individual’s journey at Central is unique. The task of education is to balance these communal aspects of learning with the individual needs and interests of each learner.

Oct 14, 2022

Mark Putnam, Central College President

Everything Belongs To Learning

I find it fascinating to talk with policy makers about two closely related topics: education and workforce.

Jul 13, 2022

Mark Putnam, Central College President

Peace and Hospitality

To be at peace in the company of those we love is the most human of conditions and the one thing we desire most.

Apr 13, 2022

Mark Putnam, Central College President

Exceeding Expectations and Embracing Opportunities

Too often we are bound by the expectations of others. This is especially true for students completing high school and entering college.

Jan 11, 2022

Central College President Mark Putnam

Finding Another Gear

We’ve all used the phrase “I’m stuck” when we’re met with a problem we don’t know how to solve. This past year has taught me a lot about getting unstuck and finding another gear.

Oct 15, 2021

Mark Putnam and several Central Dutch student-athletes.

Champions in Life

During a recent conversation with our director of athletics, Eric Van Kley, I was reminded about the deepest values we hold with respect to intercollegiate athletics.

Jul 15, 2021

That’s Inspiring

A few weeks ago, I was asked, “What inspires you?” My immediate response was, “Probably not what you think.”

Apr 7, 2021

President Mark Putnam greets students during Welcome Week in August 2020 with enthusiasm for learning and safety measures for navigating campus during the pandemic.

It’s Complicated

The advance of technological innovation and globalization are yielding greater societal complexity. At the same time some things seem easier for the same reason. Suffice it to say … it’s complicated.

Jan 15, 2021

President Mark Putnam and a 2020 Central graduate.

Resilience in Challenging Times

Central College turns to resilience in an ever-changing world of uncertainty.

Nov 13, 2020 | 1 Comment

Central College President Mark Putnam

We’ve (Almost) Been Through This Before

Central has weathered much in its 167-year history.

May 20, 2020

Central College President Mark Putnam smiles during the annual Endowed Chairs Conference.

A Faculty Is a Learning Community

At Central, we are blessed with a remarkable faculty.

Feb 14, 2020

Left to right: Mark Putnam, president; Keith Jones, Mark and Kay DeCook Endowed Chair in Character and Leadership Development and professor of psychology; Anne Williamson ’20; and Parker Majerus ’20 field questions from the media at a news conference announcing Central’s new annual tuition price.

Leading With Our Values

Central College’s values are part of what drew me to the college nearly a decade ago.

Nov 15, 2019

President Mark Putnam

Curating an Education

One of my happy tasks each year is to write letters of recommendation for seniors.

Aug 15, 2019

Mark Putnam, Central College President

Everything Belongs

There is a great deal to be learned from the questions prospective students and their parents ask.

May 10, 2019 | 1 Comment

Central College President Mark Putnam speaking to a class of incoming students.

Phenomenal Cosmic Power

Freeing students from the expectations of others is one of the most rewarding aspects of higher education.

Feb 8, 2019

Central College President Mark Putnam

Planning at the Speed of Change

Planning can be perilous: our assumptions about the future are rooted in the present and informed by the past.

Nov 27, 2018

Central College President Mark Putnam poses for a photo with the first two graduates of Central's engineering program.

It’s a Bit Messy

The path to success can get a bit messy. But that’s OK. It’s part of the journey.

Aug 14, 2018

Mark Putnam, Central College President

The Central Difference

It’s always a unique privilege to see guests in our midst who have no prior experience with the college.

May 17, 2018 | 1 Comment

Students walk near the former library (now Lubbers Center for Visual Arts) in the early 1960s.

Through the Arcs of Time

Seen through arcs of time, our great institutions have evolved gradually for a very good reason—in higher education, we tend to protect that which matters most.

Feb 19, 2018

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