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New Deans, Chairs Gain Rich Development at AACTE Leadership Academy

AACTE’s Leadership Academy in Milwaukee is under way! More than 80 new deans and department chairs from 65 educator preparation institutions across the nation are sharing in 4 days of professional development to sharpen and refine their leadership skills.

The event, which runs through Thursday, is being led by faculty members who together bring over 60 years of education leadership to the academy. In a variety of sessions and other interactions with participants, they are addressing key challenges that face new deans and chairs, such as implementing a vision, developing faculty, crafting budgets, engaging in public relations, and using data.

Veteran academy leader Kathe Rasch, now of Delta State University (MS), spoke highly of the event from the faculty’s perspective. “Being able to contribute to the growth and learning of my colleagues who are coming up is a tremendous opportunity for me to pay it forward.” New faculty member Sean Warner, education dean at Clark Atlanta University (GA), said joining the leadership team already “has been rewarding in terms of what I have learned from my colleagues and been able to share about my own experiences.”

Monday’s keynote address was delivered by AACTE Board of Directors Chair Julie Underwood, dean of the School of Education at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. The theme of her speech was teamwork and trust—and the necessity of both to facilitating change. “Nothing happens unless there is trust,” Underwood said. She also emphasized to participants the importance of breaking out of their comfort zones and coming together as a professional community to engage in the types of organizational change that matter.

For more information on AACTE’s Leadership Academy, visit http://aacte.org/professional-development-and-events/leadership-academy or contact Matthew Wales at mwales@aacte.org.

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Saroja Barnes

Senior Director for Professional Issues, AACTE