LVAIC Higher Education Leaders Institute Explores Shared Governance, Academic Leadership, Program Development
January 13, 2020, @ 10:50 AM
The LVAIC Higher Education Leaders Institute is a development opportunity for mid-career faculty and mid-level administrators who have interest and potential for advanced administrative leadership in higher education. This is a 10 month program that allows participants to explore multiple aspects of leadership in higher education while building their personal and organizational capacity for leadership.
As part of this 10-month program, LVAIC hosted a full-day mid-year session on Friday, January 10 at Muhlenberg College. This program included a presentation regarding shared governance in higher education by Dr. David Parkyn, President Emeritus of North Park University, in Chicago, Illinois.
Parkyn offered an overview of the history of and original documentation for the shared governance model, highlighting the key concepts to include “joint effort” and “shared responsibility.” These documents name the governing board as the final institutional authority, but also notes that this board should undertake appropriate self-limitation. The president shares responsibility and acts as the chief planning officer with delegated authority from the board and the faculty. The faculty hold responsibility for the curriculum. Moreover, the board and president should concur with faculty on questions of faculty status. Overall, the board of trustees offers the ultimate authority. In the traditional model, staff, student life, and students themselves are not directly represented.
In the best circumstances, the presidents, board, and faculty all work together. The president functions as the main connection between the faculty and the board, facilitating communication between both groups. Parkyn observes that in most situations, this model is endorsed, but rarely is it implemented. In the ideal implementation, this model acts as a system for aligning institutional priorities.
The Association for Governing Boards completed a study on shared governance, finding that only 32% of faculty believe presidents understand this model and only 22% of faculty members believe that presidents understand this model (2016). Parkyn asserts that the main reason for weak and ineffective shared governance is a history of “lack of attention paid to fostering trust, respect, and communication.” A cultural shift around this idea must occur before institutions hold the power to overcome these challenges.
This portion of the program was proceeded by a presentation regarding new program development and budgeting offered by Carol Traupman-Carr, Vice Provost of Moravian College. Traupman-Carr outlined the necessary steps for researching new program initiatives, exploring the alignment of those initiatives with the mission, vision, and strategic plan of the campus, and understanding the impact of the program on the overall budget of the institution. Part of this includes understanding the estimated costs and projected revenue the program will generate. Measuring the return on investment for new initiatives informs the investment of campus resources.
After networking time and the opportunity to collaborate on their campus projects, attendees then participated in a presentation regarding Academic Affairs Leadership offered by Cynthia Kosso, Provost and Dean of Faculty of Moravian College, and Daniel Wisniewski, Provost of DeSales University. This presentation offered perspective regarding the challenges and opportunities of leading the academic outcomes of a college or university. In this discussion, members explored conflicting interests, such as competing priorities between students, alumni, parents, and donors. In this process, attendees went through a workshop wherein they went through a case study of this very challenge. From there, attendees debriefed the program after completing half the sessions and discussed their goals for future learning.
To learn more about the LVAIC Higher Education Leaders Institute and how to join the program in the future, visit the Leadership Opportunities page of the LVAIC website.LVAIC Funding for 2020-2021 Collaborative Programs: Call for Proposals » « Student Affairs Professional Development Series Continues with Assessment Symposium