President’s Executive Leadership Program 2018-19

The President’s Executive Leadership Program (PELP) represents a unique professional development opportunity for campus-based administrators. Consisting of four seminars held during a 12-month period, the objective of the leadership program is to broaden participants’ understanding of our three universities as well as the U of I System. Fellows of the program will also explore pressing issues in public higher education broadly and for land grant institutions more specifically. Special emphasis will be placed on legislative issues for higher education. The Board of Trustees and the President support the program as a mechanism for identifying and selecting potential future university or system leaders. The President attends all program sessions and interacts extensively with participants.

The specific goals for PELP program Fellows include:

  • Develop a broad understanding of the expectations of a tier-1, public land-grant university in the 21st century context
  • Increase knowledge and awareness of issues and challenges facing higher education and the university
  • Enhance management and decision-making skills within a shifting demographic and global environment
  • Identify appropriate strategies in addressing key issues and achieving organizational goals
  • Expand networking opportunities and resources available at the local, state, and national levels in sustaining the university and its mission
  • Study various participatory methods and approaches in university governance and management
  • Understand change management and the roles of the appointed leadership, faculty governance structures, and the Board of Trustees in implementing change
  • Develop an appreciation of state and federal government issues that affect higher education

The program starts in the fall and continues through the academic year and into the early summer. Please note that participants are required to commit to attend each session; tentative dates have been identified but will be confirmed prior to inviting those selected to participate in the program. Descriptions of the seminars follow.

For more information about the President's Executive Leadership Program, please contact Sarah Zehr in the Office of the Executive Vice President/Vice President for Academic Affairs. 

Mastering the Relationship: The Federal Agenda

September 4-7, 2018 in Washington, DC
The first seminar in the series will focus on a wide range of issues impacting higher education and provide opportunities for participants to network with public and private officials. Speakers will provide a unique perspective on the Washington scene and higher education within today’s legislative climate. Participants will engage with members of the Illinois delegation and their staff on relevant issues. The session will include a presentation and discussion on the strategies, processes, and procedures of our Washington based staff and consultants as well as the role of university administrators in moving the university’s federal agenda.

Leading an Emerging Public University in a 21st Century Global City

November 6-7, 2018 in Chicago, IL
A review of global city issues and challenges from a higher education perspective represents the focus of this seminar. Participants will network with public officials and corporate leaders, as well as explore programs to serve the local community. Topics will include economic development, health care, public education, and the role of a research university. Discussions and presentations will feature an emphasis on the role of a university chancellor within an emerging global environment.

Strengthening the Public Partnership

March 5-7, 2019 in Springfield, IL
Located in the state’s capitol, the third seminar will provide an overview and consideration of key aspects of the relationship between the state and the university. Participants will examine issues associated with university governance and expectations in leading a state land-grant university during challenging times. Key executive branch and legislative staff members will join the group to discuss crucial issues facing the state and the university, with a roundtable de-briefing session on the second day.

Leadership and Governance of a Tier-1 Research University

May 21-22, 2019 in Urbana, IL
The final seminar will explore the role of a president and chancellor in managing and leading a public, land-grant university within a faculty governance and participatory management system. Topics will include working with faculty governance processes, labor union agreements, student groups, alumni and parent groups, and the Board of Trustees to move the university forward. On the second day, participants will engage in a roundtable discussion focusing on the seminar and the series.