Collaborate with Colleagues at AACTE Leadership Academy


Academic leaders from across the country are preparing to gather in Pittsburgh, PA, for AACTE’s annual Leadership Academy. In one month, attendees will experience an interactive and engaging professional development opportunity designed to advance their leadership skills while exploring a wide range of topics. And even if you have attended in the past, you should consider returning this year, June 23-27, as the program has once again integrated new content into the curriculum (view the full schedule).

Academy faculty first redesigned the content of the popular “Managing Conflict” sessions in 2017 by incorporating avatars into the program. Faced with difficult conversations and topics likely to occur in an academic environment, groups of job-alike attendees collaborate to design effective responses to the scenarios proposed. Their conflict-response plans are tested in simulated encounters, as volunteers meet with avatars, who emulate the situations attendees are likely to face when they return to their institutions.

“This training was one of the most valuable I’ve participated in,” said an attendee from the 2018 Leadership Academy about their avatar experience. “It provided an opportunity to define my objectives, take notes, and reflect upon how I could communicate more clearly.”

Attend AACTE Academy in Pittsburgh this June


Connect with AACTE during the 2019 Leadership Academy at the Renaissance Pittsburgh Hotel, June 23-27. Conveniently located in downtown Pittsburgh in the Cultural District, the hotel is nestled on the riverfront, with many restaurants in walking distance. Discover why Pittsburgh was named the 2019 Food City of the Year when you make plans now to join us for this AACTE event!

During the Academy’s downtime, you can enjoy Pirates baseball at PNC Park (just across the bridge from the hotel), explore the Senator John Heinz History Center (which includes the original set pieces and exclusive artifacts from “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood”), and even experience the over 250 hands-on exhibits at the Carnegie Science Center. And as part of your Academy attendance, be sure to participate in our attendee outing to the Andy Warhol Museum as well. For a full list of Pittsburgh attractions and things to do, visit visitpittsburgh.com.

9 Reasons to Volunteer for AACTE’s 2020 Annual Meeting Call for Proposals

Time is running out to volunteer as a member faculty to review proposals for the AACTE 2020 Annual Meeting. Submit reviewer applications by May 15.

AACTE is also accepting session proposals through May 29. Below are nine reasons to participate in the call for proposals for the 72nd Annual Meeting, themed “Disrupting Inequities: Educating for Change,” to be held in Atlanta, GA, February 28 – March 1, 2020:

Why become a proposal reviewer?

Join UCF Holmes Scholars this Summer at their Research and Scholarship Expo


I am thrilled to invite all Holmes Scholars to this year’s Research & Scholarship Expo! The 2019 Expo theme is Building Bridges: Promoting Impactful, Equitable Research. Sponsored by the Holmes Scholar Program and the College of Community Innovation and Education at the University of Central Florida (UCF), this Expo will provide the opportunity to engage all doctoral students in conversations focused on research, scholarship, external grant funding, and the publication process while learning strategies to navigate higher education through mentorship, advocacy, and productivity. Faculty are also invited to attend and take part in the conversation.
The Expo will take place June 28-29, 2019 in sunny Orlando, FL on the beautiful UCF campus. The Keynote address will be delivered by David H. Jackson, Jr., dean of the School of Graduate Studies and Research at Florida A&M University. It will conclude with a social gathering of participants to network and continue the conversation work. 

Special online registration rates are available for all Holmes Scholars, Holmes alumnus, doctoral students, and faculty/mentors. Please visit 

https://2019ucfholmesscholarexpo.eventbrite.com for more information and to register online. See you there! 

CEEDAR Webinar Highlights Culturally Responsive Education


The CEEDAR Center will present Culturally responsive education: A course enhancement module (CEM) designed to ensure every educator meets the needs of each learner on Tuesday, May 21, 1:00 p.m. (ET). Registration is now open.

The CEEDAR Center, an OSEP-funded technical assistance center is proud to collaborate with national organizations, technical assistance centers, and stakeholders across the country to ensure that every student with a disability has an equitable opportunity to achieve. Teacher and leader development through policy, preparation, and program improvement is central to our mission. Our partnership with AACTE provides an opportunity to support AACTE’s strategic focus on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. 

Tour the Washington Week Venue

Last week, Deborah Koolbeck, Brandon Frost, and I went to the Renaissance Arlington Capital View Hotel to get familiar with the venue and surrounding area where Washington Week will take place June 2-5.  Although it was raining that day, we decided to walk from the Crystal City Metro stop to the hotel—about a 10 minute walk. There is an underground walkway with numerous shops and restaurants, but we enjoyed the outdoor walk and getting acclimated to the area.   

What to Expect at AACTE Leadership Academy

Looking to begin, or even expand upon, your career as an educational leader? AACTE’s Leadership Academy is your opportunity to discover who you are as an academic administrator.   We asked a member of AACTE’s Academy Faculty, John Henning, to elaborate upon his experiences as a three-time attendee. Henning had this insight to offer, as well as advice for future Academy participants:

What year(s) did you attend the Academy, and what position were you in at the time?

I first attended the Academy as a newly-hired, outside department chair in 2009. I attended again in 2013, when I was promoted to Associate Dean. Finally, I attended a third time in 2015 when I began my dean’s position.

Washington Week: How to Plan Your Stay

Being new to AACTE, I learned a lot about what to expect during Day on the Hill when Deborah Koolbeck and I recently went to the Capitol. I have never been on the Capitol grounds before, although I have lived in the DC area for over 20 years, and it is beautiful. The weather was perfect. View video clip about Capitol Grounds

So, what can you expect during Day on the Hill? Tuesday will be a full-day of orientation at the hotel where you will build skills and prepare for their meetings with your congressional offices. Then, on Wednesday morning you will be bused to Capitol Hill for scheduled appointments with your elected officials. “But what about their luggage,” I asked? Attendees can bring luggage on the bus to the hill—or you can stay in town a little longer and take advantage of all the activities DC has to offer. View video clip about luggage

State Leaders Institute: Develop your chapter, improve your skills, network with colleagues

What does it mean to be a leader? Are leaders born or are they developed?

If you Google the word “Leader,” depending on the day, you may end up with between 4 and 6 billion hits. There is certainly no shortage of opinions, courses, or books on leadership. Some individuals are leaders by virtue of their title, others are considered leaders whether or not they have a title. Whether leadership has been thrust upon you or it has slowly developed over time, you understand that leadership carries the challenge of expectations and obligations.

As a person who thinks about the concept of leadership quite a bit, it seems to me that, although some individuals may embody characteristics that lend themselves to leadership, true leaders are developed over time through a combination of professional development and lived experience. 

As a leader you have an obligation to those you lead, an obligation to the profession, and an obligation to yourself. In the field of education, and in teacher preparation in particular, there are no shortage of leaders. Those who are the most impactful, however, are the ones who continuously seek to improve their knowledge, skills, and relationships.

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