2006 PKAL Leadership Seminar


Kansas City, Missouri, November 17 - 19, 2006

Draft Agenda, as of October 17, 2006
Friday, November 17, 2006
10:00 am - 2:30 pm Seminar with Design Professionals
Advance registration required

A continuing conversation about current roles and responsibilities of design professionals in shaping a physical environment for undergraduate STEM learning that will serve with distinction and efficiency well into the future. Issues to be discussed include impact of emerging technologies and pedagogies, the need to address short- and long-term costs, and opportunities afforded by sustainability trends.
12:00 - 3:00 pm REGISTRATION
1:30 - 2:30 pm Meeting of Seminar Facilitators & Planners
It's all about vision...

Alison Morrison-Shetlar- Director of Faculty Center for Teaching & Learning, Professor of Biology, University of Central Florida
Jeanne L. Narum- Director, Project Kaleidoscope
John Hall- Professor & Chair of Chemistry, Morehouse College
Beth L. Weatherby- Dean of Arts, Letters & Sciences, Southwest Minnesota State University
Michael Moody- Dean of the Faculty, Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering
Janet Stocks- Director of the Center for Academic & Professional Success, Baldwin-Wallace College

Leadership theories and practice all confirm that a clearly articulated vision– one shaped by and agreed-to by the community– is the keystone of a healthy effort to build a sustainable and demonstrably robust learning environment. The answer to the question, "how do I get there?" is another question, "where do you want to go?"

A team of reflective practitioners will engage participants in discussions about:

  • shaping 21st century visions for student learning that reflect 21st century realities– internal and external to the campus
  • their personal experiences in shaping transforming visions, those that undergird efforts to build research-rich learning environments, interdisciplinary learning environments, and those environments that attract all students into the study of STEM fields and that motivate them to persist and succeed.

In assigned at-the-table groups, participants will share personal best practices in shaping visions, how they overcame the political barriers of building consensus, finding time, etc.

4:30 - 5:00 pm BREAK
5:00 - 6:00 pm BREAK-OUT SESSION A

Visions perish unless they are translated into specific goals and strategies. In these break-out sessions, participants will turn from a general discussion about vision to the work of shaping specific strategies– for each facet of the undergraduate kaleidoscope– that can be used as roadmaps for realizing the goals and visions. Thinking about how strategies and actions differ will be one topic for discussion.

Each break-out group will prepare poster/s for display and discussion during the following session. Institutional teams are to split up among the various break-out sessions.

6:00 - 6:15 pm BREAK

Posters from Break-Out Session A are captured and presented as a catalyst for discussions during the reception.
7:30 - 8:30 pm PLENARY SESSION
"Rising above the gathering storm... in a flat world"

Dennis Cheek- Vice President for Education, The Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation

Among the recent urgent calls to action is that from the Council on Competitiveness, that America needs to put "in place the talent pool, innovation capital and infrastructure necessary for continuing success." The Kansas City-based Kaufmann Foundation's vision is to foster "a society of economically independent individuals who are engaged citizens, contributing to the improvement of their communities." Such a vision matches that of academic leaders in envisioning the character of students they seek to graduate. This plenary signals the relationship between transforming higher education and serving the national good.
Saturday, November 18, 2006
7:30 - 8:30 am BREAKFAST
9:00 - 10:15 am WELCOME
Abby Freeman- Vice President for Administration, The Stowers Institute for Medical Research

Leaders & Leadership

David Christopher Arney- Program Manager for Mathematics, United States Army Research Office
Stacey Franklin Jones- Dean of the School of Science, Technology & Engineering, Benedict College
Gary R. Wilson- Dean of the College of Arts & Sciences, McMurry University

In order to enhance the capacity of academic leaders, we seek your involvement in this 75-minute session. Making improvements and leading academic change takes people with a clear vision of the future of the institution; a powerful agenda for strengthening the STEM learning environment; strong leadership skills to influence decisions; a passionate dedication to achieve their goals; and a strong institutional perspective. In this session, we ask you to do the following:
  • Learn some of the leadership issues that can lead to improvements in the academic environment. Understanding effective leadership methods and how people use them to improve and change the institution. A key step is to get people to take a broader view by encouraging an institutional perspective and recognizing service to the institution and to colleagues.
  • Experience an academic leadership case study that involves influencing the decision-making on enhancing the culture of an institution, and rallying faculty and administration support and commitment to institutional progress.
  • Discuss the writing of action plans to improve the STEM culture and environment on your campus and adapting and implementing viable programs to improve STEM programs by holding retreats, workshops, and student events.

The goal is to develop confidence and leadership skills in order to initiate and lead reforms and improvements on campus. Some of the questions confronted are: What is a leader? What are the characteristics of a leader who makes a difference for students? How do leaders scan the environment, identify emerging trends and move the ‘system’ away from the status quo to a better state? How are the same skills needed by leaders involved in transforming systems similar to the skills required by the students we are now preparing to be 21st century leaders? How can the institutional culture signal to students, faculty and administrators that leadership is desired, respected, and celebrated?

- The Creation of the Future: The Role of the American University. By Frank H. T. Rhodes, Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2001, 265 pp.
- Why Leaders Can’t Lead: The Unconscious Conspiracy Continues. By Warren Bennis, Jossey-Bass, San Francisco, 1989, 169 pp.

10:15 - 10:45 am BREAK
10:45 am - 12:00 pm BREAK-OUT SESSION B

What questions must be addressed in shaping programs that work? Who needs to be at the table as these programs evolve, are implemented and evaluated? What difference will/do these programs make and for whom? PKAL's strategies for shaping the future recognize that engaging 21st century students in a 21st century natural science community is key to drawing them into the study of STEM fields, to keeping them there and to motivating them to consider careers in related fields. Three PKAL Leadership Institutions present their story, describing how they addressed some of the questions posed above as they reshaped the future of STEM learning on their campus. A fourth break-out session discusses the roles and responsibilities of senior academic leaders.
1:00 - 2:00 pm PLENARY SESSION
Influencing Positive Change in Parallel Universes

Donna L. Sundre- Executive Director, Center for Assessment & Research Studies, Professor of Psychology, James Madison University
Nancy Jannik- Associate Vice President of Assessment, Research, Grants & Graduate Studies, Winona State University
Diane L. Schmidt- Director of the Whitaker Center for Science, Mathematics & Technology Education, Florida Gulf Coast University

Who are our students, those now on our campus and those in the pipeline? What is their background, what skills, interests, and career aspirations do they bring into our classrooms and labs? What skills and capacities will they need to become 21st century leaders, innovators, life-long learners? In this plenary we delve more deeply into institutional strategies that center on strengthening student learning in STEM fields, considering by what measures we can determine how and if goals for student learning can be aligned with institutional policies and practices.
2:15 - 3:30 pm BREAK-OUT SESSION C

In an early paper for PKAL, P. Uri Treisman, Professor of Mathematics at the University of Texas at Austin, analyzed the process of change in ways that helped reinforce PKAL’s persisting ‘kaleidoscopic’ perspective. The integrating theme in this break-out session will be (in Treisman’s words): ...that at the same time as projects continue to evolve, the internal and external environments also change. Everything is volatile; leaders have to monitor and respond to such changing environments to ensure that innovative solutions do not have short lives. It is the responsibility of leadership to be able to capitalize and leverage reforms, to support the innovators on their campus by signaling that the results of working together can be sustained. Visionary leaders generate such a community.

These are issues of leadership: getting people to collaborate is political work. Faculty and administrative leaders need to think collectively about the linkages between the mission and the practices of the institution. What difference will the collective vision of an institutional future, of goals for student learning make to the process of determining budgets, of building a faculty, of designing and redesigning programs? Collectively these individual sessions address the kaleidoscopic approach to realizing creative and sustainable change.
3:30 - 3:45 pm BREAK
4:45 - 5:15 pm PLENARY SESSION
Leader as Story-Teller: An Interview with Jeanne Narum

John R. Jungck- Professor of Biology, Beloit College - BioQUEST

Peer persuasion is one of the three “p’s” of the BioQuest initiative, which was started in the early 1980’s as the brainchild of John Jungck— the others being problem-posing and problem-solving. Helping students see the power of peer persuasion is really initiating them into the community of story-tellers that is the community of science. As the literature on dissemination describes how to get people to understand what might be a radical new idea, to understand what works, story-telling is suggested as an important tool. In his book, Springboard, Stephen Denning talks about how he learned to catalyze change through story-telling.

I found that a certain sort of story enables change by providing direct access to the living part of the organization. It communicates complicated change ideas while generating Momentum toward rapid implementation. It helps an organization reinvent itself. Storytelling gets inside the minds of the individuals who collectively make up the organization and affects how they think, worry, wonder, agonize, and dream about themselves and in the process create—and re-create—their organization.

Here we hear the story of one of the pioneers in shaping the future of undergraduate science (STEM)

Sunday, November 19, 2006
7:30 - 8:30 am BREAKFAST
8:30 - 9:30 am BREAK-OUT SESSION D

Break-out Session D addresses some of the nuts and bolts issues that individuals, teams of individuals, departments and the broader campus community must take in the journey moving toward institutional transformation.

In the assigned cluster groups (see Friday), teams will complete their team agenda for action, followed by time to present for critique to other members of their cluster and assigned consultants.
11:00 - 11:15 am BREAK
11:15 am - 12:00 pm PLENARY SESSION
Now, in the year 2016...

Ishrat M. Khan- Professor of Chemistry, Clark Atlanta University
Elizabeth F. McCormack- Professor of Physics, Brwn Mawr College
Alison I. Morrison-Shetlar- Director of the Faculty Center for Teaching & Learning, Professor of Biology, University of Central Florida

What are the stories that leaders will be telling, in 2016, about how our generation of leaders in undergraduate STEM set about shaping their future? What artifacts will provide tangible evidence of what we’ve accomplished, what difference we’ve made, and to whom? In this final session, we will develop some potential plot-lines and characters for stories to be told in 2016.