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Tuscarawas News Detail

Institute for Excellence:  Now Seeking Nominations for the 2013 Class

Posted Nov. 12, 2012
enter photo description
The 2012 Administrator class of the Institute for Excellence
get together for a photo with Kent State President Lester A.
Lefton
(far left).

The Institute for Excellence is seeking applications for its second class. Submissions will be accepted through Nov. 30 for the university leadership program that gives eligible faculty and staff a unique opportunity to develop their skills in this area.

A 10-month program designed to create and promote a culture of excellence, the Institute for Excellence was introduced in 2011 by the Training and Development unit of the Division of Human Resources. The current class has 26 participants in the program’s two tracks: Administrator and Individual Contributor.

The Administrator track is for faculty or staff who manage or chair a department or unit, and/or supervise others.  The Individual Contributor track is for employees not currently in a managerial role, but who have the desire and capacity to lead change.

The focus for the Administrator and Individual Contributor versions are different even though they are designed to facilitate development around many of the same qualities associated with excellence – such as collaboration, execution, agility, strategic thinking, foresight and communication. 

“Both administrators and individual contributors need to excel at things like collaboration and strategic thinking; the difference lies in how those specific individuals apply the information to their respective roles,” says Bob Hall, manager of HR Training and Development. He adds that feedback from the current class – and from their supervisors – demonstrates that participants are learning more about how they change their thinking and behavior to take on more of a leadership role in their respective areas.

The Institute for Excellence will begin in January, with the administrator and individual contributor tracks meeting monthly for either a full- or half-day session. The two tracks will meet separately, with some opportunities for joint sessions. A partial list of session topics include discussions with President Lester A. Lefton and other Kent State officers, increased financial literacy, emotional intelligence, two 360° assessments to benchmark  skills, using neuroscience and physiology to improve leadership performance, diversity in higher education and understanding team dynamics. The sessions will combine in-class discussions, self-development tools and opportunities for hands-on application.

Hall says one of the things that make the Institute for Excellence unique is the ability for participants to immediately apply what they have learned. “Many leadership programs are theoretical in nature with the application being optional, he says. “In the Institute for Excellence, applying what you learn is mandatory.   It’s all about changing behaviors, even ones that have been successful in the past. “Ultimatley, it’s the participant who must figure out how they can best accomplish that; and so far the results have been impressive.”

There are eligibility requirements and an application process for each Institute for Excellence track. All participants must be employed full time by the university for a minimum of one year and must have received a rating of “meets expectations” or higher on their most recent performance evaluation. The Institute for Excellence website includes a complete list of criteria, program dates and other important information.

Interested faculty and staff should read the online application worksheet and then complete the online application form. Applicants selected for the Institute for Excellence will be notified by the end of the fall semester.

For more information, contact Hall at 330-672-0894 or rhall4@kent.edu.