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Jo Young Switzer
Jo Young Switzer to receive honorary degree from Juniata

Jo Young Switzer, retired president of Manchester University, will receive an honorary doctor of humane letters degree from Juniata College at a ceremony prior to her lecture “Women and Leadership: Where has Progress Gotten Us?” at 7:30 p.m., Tuesday, April 5, in Neff Lecture Hall in the von Liebig Center for Science in Huntingdon, Pa.

Juniata announced that Switzer, who retired as Manchester’s president in 2014, will be presented with the honorary degree by James A. Troha, president of Juniata.

The announcement said she will speak on the effective characteristics for leadership, focusing on women in leadership roles. She has published scholarly articles on women in leadership roles, such as TV anchors, college presidents and women at the top levels of the federal government.

Switzer became president of Manchester in 2004, when it was known as Manchester College. The institution was reclassified as a university in 2012. During her presidency, she proposed a doctoral-level pharmacy program and secured a $35 million grant from Lilly Endowment Inc. for its implementation.

Switzer is an alumna of Manchester, earning a bachelor’s degree in English in 1969. She went on to earn a master’s degree in 1977 in communication studies and a doctorate in 1980, both from the University of Kansas.

She has received numerous awards, including a 2014 Sagamore of the Wabash, the highest honor the governor can bestow on a citizen of Indiana, and the 2013 Chief Executive Leadership Award from the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education.

Here is the announcement from Juniata College. 

Manchester University, with campuses in North Manchester and Fort Wayne, Ind., offers more than 60 areas of academic study to 1,500 students in undergraduate programs, a Master of Science in Pharmacogenomics, Master of Athletic Training and a four-year professional Doctor of Pharmacy.  Learn more about the private, northern Indiana school at

March 29, 2016