Chana Akins, DeShana Collett, Melinda Ickes, Huajing Maske and Seungahn Nah of the University of Kentucky were among 41 fellows who recently completed the third Bluegrass Academic Leadership Academy, an initiative of the Bluegrass Higher Education Consortium.
The Academic Leadership Academy is a presidential initiative, led by the 12 presidents represented in the consortium, to build future academic leaders in the Bluegrass Region. One hundred thirty-four fellows have now completed the program in three years. The purpose of the academy is to encourage faculty and staff to consider leadership career paths and to provide guidance in developing the skills that are requisites for effective institutional leadership to ensure a sound and successful future for their institution and the Bluegrass region.
The Bluegrass Higher Education Consortium and the Academic Leadership Academy is managed by Bluegrass Tomorrow.
“The desired outcome,” said Bluegrass Higher Education Consortium Co-Chair John Roush of Centre College, “is to create a cohort of leaders for Central Kentucky’s 12 institutions of higher education that have the proficiencies to work with their colleagues by effectively employing quality leadership skills and being able to have insight into the overall role of the university so as to strategically lead the next generation of learners in the Bluegrass region.”
The Academic Leadership Academy also addresses one of the goals the presidents set in the signing of the charter agreement for the consortium in 2012: “To design professional development/leadership development opportunities for administration, faculty and staff.”
The fellows experienced two full-day sessions on Feb. 18 at Berea College and April 29 at Spindletop. Keynote presentations by presidents for the two sessions included: President Lyle Roelofs of Berea College, President Seamus Carey of Transylvania University and President Eli Capilouto of the University of Kentucky.
On campus interim projects were also completed with faculty working together in teams to work on a project which benefits each participating educational institution. The University of Kentucky’s project was titled, “Perspectives on Recruitment, Promotion and Retention of Women Faculty.” Others included: Asbury University - Cross Cultural Engagement Requirements; Berea College - "Invent Your Life” student model; BCTC - challenges of first year faculty members; Centre College - improving faculty recognition programs; EKU - “Metacognition” student’s awareness of their own learning styles and study habits; Georgetown College - promoting its strong, traditional liberal arts curriculum as effective career preparation in response to recent attacks on the liberal arts; Kentucky State University - “Transformation 2.0 Accountability, Commitment and Urgency;” Midway University - a campus-wide teaching and learning program for faculty development; Morehead State University - “MCOMPASS: Mobile App to Aid Student Success and Retention;” Sullivan University - soft-skill, toastmaster training for advisory boards; Transylvania University - comparison of core general education goals with Berea, Centre and Sewanee.
The Bluegrass Higher Education Consortium was chartered in 2012, under the Bluegrass Tomorrow 501c3 umbrella, with the mission of advancing the region both economically and educationally. The 12 participating regionally accredited four-year institutions are: Asbury University, Berea College, Bluegrass Community and Technical College, Centre College, Eastern Kentucky University, Georgetown College, Midway College, Morehead State University, Kentucky State University, Sullivan University, Transylvania University and the University of Kentucky. The presidents of each institution constitute the executive committee of the board of directors.