SAF Welcomes New President and CEO

Headshot of Gregory D. Hess -- A white man stands in a grey suit with orange glasses against a light grey wall.

Gregory D. Hess, Ph.D., is President and CEO of SAF and IES Abroad, a not-for-profit academic consortium of 270 top-tier American Colleges and universities and with more than 240 additional partner universities worldwide. 

IES Abroad provides premier study abroad and internship programs around the world through IES Abroad, IES Internships, IES Abroad Customized & Faculty-Led Programs, and The Study Abroad Foundation (SAF). 

With more than 400 study abroad programs in 85 global locations worldwide, the organization creates authentic global education opportunities for more than 10,000 students annually. Together IES Abroad and SAF have more than 140,000 alumni who have benefited from studying on IES Abroad and SAF programs since its inception, and offers more than $6 million in scholarships and financial aid.

Having joined IES Abroad and SAF in 2020, Greg is an extremely well-rounded leader, and brings a wealth of expertise and experience across higher education, liberal arts, and business. His passion for education and economics brings an important and distinctive perspective, which greatly benefits IES Abroad and SAF.

Before joining IES Abroad and SAF, Greg held the role of President of Wabash College. There, he led efforts to nationally promote the value of a liberal arts education, while developing plans leading to Wabash’s 200th anniversary in 2032.

Among his many accomplishments at Wabash College, Greg directed the development of “WabashX"" initiatives in Democracy and Public Discourse, Digital Arts and Human Values, Global Health, and the Center for Innovation, Business, and Entrepreneurship. He also hosted a conference entitled, “Celebrating the Value of the Liberal Arts,” with scholars, college presidents, foundation leaders, and representatives of the business, medicine, and law fields attending.

Additionally, Greg launched a rebrand of Wabash College and lead the charge during a master planning process that encompassed campus life improvements, academics, and infrastructure. As part of the College’s “Giant Steps: A Campaign for Wabash College” initiative, Greg Hess secured the largest single gift in Wabash’s history—40 million dollars.

Greg has also consulted for Honda Motors of North America and is a member of the Ohio Governor’s Council of Economic Advisors. He has served as a Visiting Scholar at the Federal Reserve Banks of San Francisco, St. Louis, Cleveland, and Kansas City, the Bank of Japan, Korea University, the IMF Institute, and the Hoover Institution. He has been a member of the Shadow Open Market Committee since 2002.

Prior to joining Wabash, Greg served as Dean of the Faculty and Vice President of Academic Affairs at Claremont McKenna College in California. While at Claremont McKenna, he served as the James G. Boswell Professor of Economics and a George R. Roberts Fellow, a role which gave him responsibility for the college’s academic affairs, including the Center for Global Education, the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurism, athletics, institutional research, student learning outcome assessments, and information technology.

Greg has also held teaching positions at Carnegie Mellon University, the University of Kansas, St. John’s College (Cambridge), the University of Cambridge, London Business School, and Oberlin College.

He is a widely published author with more than 60 articles, book chapters, and books to his credit, has served as an editor for Economics and Politics and Macroeconomic Dynamics, and presented at more than 90 scholarly international seminars and events.

Greg earned his undergraduate degree at the University of California, Davis, and master's and doctoral degrees at Johns Hopkins University. He studied abroad at the London School of Economics as part of the school’s General Course Degree program.

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