Gov. Scott appoints UF Higher Ed doctoral student
Gov. Scott has appointed John D. Hooker II, a UF doctoral student in Higher Education Administration, to the Higher Education Facilities Financing Authority of Florida.
Gov. Scott has appointed John D. Hooker II, a UF doctoral student in Higher Education Administration, to the Higher Education Facilities Financing Authority of Florida.
UF has honored Justin Ortagus, a faculty researcher in Higher Ed Administration and Policy, with its 2018 Excellence Award for Assistant Professors. He also is the new director of the UF Institute of HIgher Education.
Michael Hudson-Vassell always liked puzzles.
Last summer, the UF College of Education doctoral candidate was awarded the chance to work with the Florida Legislature to solve puzzles of public policy.
Hudson-Vassell was the only summer intern selected for the Office of Program Policy Analysis and Government Accountability, the evaluation arm of the Florida Legislature.
They apparently liked his work: He since has been hired as a legislative policy analyst in the office.
“Getting the position was a great feeling,” he said. “I knew the opportunity to get out into the real world and put into practice the things I learned in the classroom would be useful.”
Accepting a full-time job in Tallahassee has not hindered Hudson-Vassell’s doctorate process. The alumni fellow will earn his Ph.D. at UF in educational leadership, with a concentration in research and evaluation methodology, upon the completion of his dissertation.
Fortunately, he is not required to make the long trip to-and-from campus because he has completed all necessary coursework.
Hudson-Vassell said legislative interns gain experience working side by side with office staff members.
Throughout the summer, he performed document citing and analyzed educational programs and policies from all different angles, including legislative, procedural and financial.
Hudson-Vassell said he never realized the complexity behind the legislature system and the process of forming public policy.
“There’s a lot of work that goes on behind the scenes by folks who you never hear about, which makes it even more interesting that I’m one of those people,“ he said. Thanks to extensive statistical training at UF, he has no trouble understanding and speaking intelligently about statistical analysis.
“It’s a good feeling to know that essential parts of your job aren’t going over your head,” he said.
He attributes his success to his mentor, Linda Behar-Horenstein, a UF Distinguished Teaching Scholar, COE professor of educational administration and policy and an affiliate professor with the College of Dentistry.
“She’s been instrumental throughout this process, not only in helping me learn the research techniques but also in encouraging me to move forward,” he said.
In turn, he left a lasting impression on Behar-Horenstein as her research assistant. The two became close after collaborating on several projects and still work together, coordinating over the phone and computer.
“Michael is incredibly diligent, and you can count on him to handle detailed work well. Not only will he get it done, but he will get it done perfectly,” she said.
Hudson-Vassell received his bachelor’s degree in business administration in 2009 and his masters in educational leadership in 2011, both from UF.
At age 27, he is unsure of exactly where his career will take him; however, he is interested in developing public, specifically educational, policy. He said his experience with the Florida Legislature is already helping him to fulfill that goal.
“Right now the job is the perfect fit,” he said. “I am hoping the research I do there will help our legislative system work as well it possibly can.”
SOURCE: Michael Hudson-Vassell, Legislative Policy Analyst; firstname.lastname@example.org
WRITER: Candice Wynter, communications intern, UF College of Education; email@example.com
MEDIA CONTACT: Larry Lansford, communications director, UF College of Education; firstname.lastname@example.org; 352-273-4137
Lyle McKinney, a 2010 UF doctoral graduate in higher education administration, was recently awarded the University of Houston’s 2014 Teaching Excellence Award.
McKinney is an assistant professor of higher education and faculty-in-residence at UH.
This award isn’t McKinney’s first recognition as a top teacher. In 2013, he received the UH College of Education Research Excellence Award and also was one of four assistant professors across the state of Texas to serve as a Faculty Fellow of the Greater Texas Foundation.
He said his goal is to help shape public policies and institutional practices that raise the chances of success for community college students. He said he benefitted from UF COE’s national reputation as one of the best at preparing highly effective community college educators.
“UF gave me this great opportunity as a student to immerse myself in meaningful research,” he said. “It built a confidence that kind of snowballed.”
As a member of the Houston Gator Club, McKinney still feels closely linked to the Gator Nation. He said he gains a deeper appreciation for the knowledge and motivation his alma mater provided as the years go by.
“I want to take the knowledge I’ve gathered from UF and use it to improve the lives of others,” he said.
UF higher education administration alumna Monique Perry was recently appointed dean of enrollment services at York Technical College. York Tech is a two-year community and technical college outside of the Charlotte, North Carolina area.
As dean, she oversees student recruitment and admissions, academic records, the college-wide call center, and financial aid.
She earned her Ed.D. in higher education administration with a concentration in community college leadership from UF in 2013.
“The depth of knowledge, exposure and the support of the UF network I developed there helped make me competitive for my current position,” Perry said. “Our program focused on developing us as a total package.”
Perry’s research interests include the impacts of the multi-generational workforce on higher education and its ability to attract and retain future leaders, especially millennials. Her dissertation at UF included research on millennial faculty workplace preferences and their impact on job satisfaction.
“My legacy is to not only help develop people in higher education, but also make sure that I contribute to programs, initiatives and guidelines that help make students successful,” she said.
With myriad underlying forces driving rapid change in higher education—more online courses and degrees, community colleges offering four-year baccalaureate degrees, declining funding, the looming shortage of qualified administrators, and student loan outrage, to name a few—the traditionally trend-setting Institute of Higher Education (IHE) at UF’s College of Education is rethinking how it can best meet the needs of higher education and its leaders.
“Higher education is sailing into the perfect storm—a tsunami of changes in so many areas at once that institutions must prepare and plan for,” said IHE director Dale Campbell, a professor and head of UF’s higher education administration program. “For our institute to make effective, lasting change in today’s rapidly changing world, we first must look at ourselves and determine the best approaches and actions we can take in shaping the brightest future possible for higher education.”
Campbell and other college and institute officials have launched a sweeping strategic planning process that, starting last June, has included focus groups and brainstorming sessions involving more than two dozen IHE alumni, graduate students and state and national leaders in higher education administration. The sessions were facilitated by Willis Holcombe, a University of Florida IHE alumnus, former chancellor of Florida’s community college system, president emeritus of Broward College and recently retired as interim president of Florida State College in Jacksonville.
The process culminated last week in Orlando, at a UF alumni gathering at the annual meeting of the national Community College Futures Assembly, where Campbell unveiled the resulting strategic plan outlining the IHE’s “re-energized” mission and vision.
Campbell said the IHE’s strategic planning process yielded four major goals:
GOAL 1: Strengthen higher education worldwide by developing the next generation of well-prepared, forward-thinking higher education leaders, by providing the educational experiences, learning and research environment and grounding in strategic change management to develop effective leaders and policymakers.
GOAL 2: Secure alliances with the Florida state college system, higher education leaders, alumni and state and national organizations to foster research-based policies and practices that enhance student learning and success—strengthening UF’s role as a national leader.;
GOAL 3: Position UF’s Institute of Higher Education as the premier thought leader in the state and nation on public policy in higher education;
GOAL 4: Serve as an independent research arm to the Florida college system, state government and national policy groups, addressing critical issues in higher education policy and practice.
“We will build upon our past success with a goal to become the premier graduate program in higher education administration in the nation,” Campbell said.
UF’s Higher Education Administration program has been a national force in graduate education since the mid-1950s, when the Florida Board of Control sought out UF education professor James Wattenbarger to steer the development of a state plan for community colleges. Wattenbarger guided the state community college system from 1957 to 1967 before returning to UF to become the founding director of the College of Education’s new Institute of Higher Education.
Since then, through the institute, UF higher education scholars have continued to provide mentoring, networking and professional development opportunities for higher education practitioners and leaders, with special emphasis on Florida community and state colleges, and on increasing college access for underrepresented groups.
The IHE has sponsored the annual Community College Futures Assembly in Orlando since 1995, with the group serving as a national independent policy think tank in tackling the most critical issues facing American community colleges. Last week’s meeting in Orlando marked the group’s 20th anniversary of its founding. The Futures Assembly also presents its nationally recognized Bellwether Awards at its annual meeting highlighting the “best trend-setting practices” among CCFA institutions.
The IHE’s new strategic plan lists several key objectives for both the short and long terms.
Short-term objectives, to be implemented over the next two years, include:
— Co-sponsor the International Conference on College Teaching and Learning set for this March;
— Develop a community college master’s degree in student affairs administration;
— Create applied research centers in Florida’s state colleges in the following areas—teaching and learning and advising; workforce development and economic development strategies; and public policy analysis, strategic management, resource development and financial management;
— Appoint IHE liaison to attend meetings of the Florida College System Council of Presidents and engage with appropriate representative on topics of mutual interest;
— And, additional strategies concerning IHE curriculum revision, internships for IHE graduate students, broader public relations initiatives, and strategies for developing revenue streams for institute sustainability.
Long-term strategies, for implementation over the next five years, include:
— Develop additional stackable credentials within the College of Education to create a new market for expansion and provide a career ladder into the IHE’s graduate programs.
— Secure external funding for endowed chairs in leadership development and in teaching and learning;
— Analyze current markets and trends and changing demographics to ensure program responsiveness and leadership;
“This strategic framework represents a first step in the strategic positioning of the Institute of Higher Education,” said College of Education Dean Glenn Good. “The institute leadership team and I will work with our faculty and staff to consider the plan’s potential impact on their school and modify the plan as needed.”
* * *
The College of Education and its Institute of Higher Education would like to thank the following faculty, alumni, colleagues and friends for their help in the development and drafting of the institute’s strategic plan:
IHE Strategic Planning Committee
— Glenn Good, dean, UF College of Education
— Willis Holcombe (committee chair), past interim president of Florida State College at Jacksonville
— Dale Campbell, professor and director of IHE and the FUTURES Bellwether College Consortium– Pedro Villarreal III, clinical assistant professor, HEA, UF College of Education
— Barbara Keener, chair of UF HEA Alumni Network, and core graduate faculty member in Leadership in Higher Education/Enrollment Management at the School of Education, Capella University
— Judith Bilsky, VP and provost, Florida State College at Jacksonville
— Kathryn Birmingham, CEO and principal, The Research Group
— Tina O’Daniels, associate director, IHE
— Maria Gutierrez Martin, senior director of development, UF College of Education
Focus group participants
— Polly Binns, executive director, Council for Resource Development
— Michael Brawer, CEO, Association of Florida Colleges
— Noah Brown, president and CEO, Association of Community College Trustees
— Walter Bumphus, president and CEO, American Association of Community Colleges
— Conferlete Carney, provost, St. Petersburg College
— Dennis Gallon, president, Palm Beach State College
— Carl Hite, president, Cleveland State Community College, Tenn.
— Kathy Johnson, president, Pasco-Hernando Community College
— Ed Massey, president of Indian River State College
— Kristy Presswood, associate vice president, Daytona State College
— Brian Polding, campus college chair of the School of Business, University of Phoenix (Fla.
— Angel Rodriquez, professor, Broward College
— Debra Volzer, executive director, Pearson Learning Solutions
— Kirk White, president, National Council for Continuing Education and Training
— Josh Wyner, executive director of the college excellence program, Aspen Institute
UF higher education administration students
— Uttam Gaulee, PhD fellow
— Xiadan Hu, PhD fellow
— Makaya McKnight, EdD student
— Timothy Wilson, PhD fellow
SOURCE: Dale Campbell, director, UF Institute of Higher Education, and professor of higher education administration, UF College of Education; email@example.com, 352-273-4300
WRITER: Larry Lansford, director, news and communications, UF College of Education; firstname.lastname@example.org; 352-273-4137
UF’s higher education administration program only selects its Outstanding Graduates every five years, so it’s a big deal when the winners are announced. That’s why officials at the UF Institute of Higher Education announced this year’s 11 recipients at a special gathering of their peers—at a special alumni reunion and awards banquet held concurrently on Jan. 28 with the annual gathering of the Community College Futures Assembly in Orlando.
The competitive awards program recognizes selected professionals—all Ph.D. or Ed.D. graduates of UF’s higher education administration program—for their effectiveness as community college administrators, participation in collegewide strategic planning, community involvement, and professional activities at the state, regional and national levels.
The UF alumni winners of 2012 were:
— Devi Drexler, educational policy consultant with the Florida Department of Education division of accountability, research and measurement
— Hank Dunn, president of Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College (N.C.)
— Carl Hite, president of Cleveland State Community College (Tenn.)
— Anne Kress, president of Monroe Community College (Rochester, NY)
— Anna Lebesch, vice president for workforce development at St. Johns River State College (in Palatka, Fla.)
— Jeanna Mastrodicasa, assistant vice president for student affairs, University of Florida
— Christopher Mullin, program director for policy analysis with the American Association of Community Colleges in Washington D.C.
— Tina Barreiro O’Daniels, associate provost at the Tarpon Springs campus of St. Petersburg College (Fla.)
— Brian Polding, chair of the College of Information Systems and Technology, and the School of Business at North Florida campus of the University of Phoenix (in Jacksonville)
— Kristy Presswood, associate vice president of the College of Education, Daytona State College (Fla.)
— Deanne Williams, associate professor and chair, hospitality management department at Virginia State University (in Petersburg, Va.)
The recipients emerged from a pool of 30 nominees reviewed earlier in the month by a panel of leading higher education professionals from the CCFA organization.
Capsule summaries below highlight noteworthy achievements and honors of the winners:
Devi Drexler, PhD
Educational Policy Consultant
Florida Department of Education; Division of Accountability, Research and Measurement
At the Florida Department of Education, Dr. Drexler provides statewide analysis and information to support policy decisions of the deputy and commissioner of education, such as FCAT analysis and review. She’s worked in student affairs administration at several institutions including the University of Florida, FSU, Georgia Gwinnett, Santa Fe, Lake Sumter and Tallahassee Community Colleges. Drexler is a member of the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators and the Pi Lambda Theta International Honor Society.
Hank Dunn, EdD
Asheville Buncombe Technical Community College (N.C.)
Dr. Dunn has worked in community colleges for nearly 30 years, with 21 years in the Florida Community College System. At A-B Tech, he aligns budgets to the strategic plan, creates flexible learning formats and helped to pass a countywide sales tax worth $129 million to the college for repair, renovation and building of facilities. Dunn helped increase enrollment by 10,000 students in a four-year period in a past position at Ivy Tech Community College in Indiana.
Carl Hite, PhD
Cleveland State Community College (Tenn.)
During his 15 years as president of Cleveland State Community College, Dr. Hite has made sure his college not only keeps pace with the tremendous changes occurring in higher education, but leads the way in implementing essential changes. CSCC is a past recipient of the prestigious Bellwether Award, received after the college’s redesigned math program was recognized by President Obama as a program that every American community college should replicate. Hite is leading efforts to scale up the redesign “across the curriculum.” Hite is president of the National Alliance of Community and Technical Colleges.
Anne M. Kress, PhD
Monroe Community College, Rochester, NY
Previously, as provost at Santa Fe Community College, Dr. Kress negotiated a faculty contract change, grew international programming and sustainability efforts, began the Center for Innovation and Economic Development, and moved SFC to a four-year degree. As the current president of Monroe Community College, fundraising has improved each year during the recession and MCC hosted the first event to raise over $100,000 in one evening. MCC has expanded its honors program and changed policies to improve student success and completion.
Anna M. Lebesch, EdD
Vice President for Workforce Development
St. Johns River State College (in Palatka, Fla.)
Dr. Lebesch has worked in higher education for over 15 years as a counselor, instructor and administrator. Last year, she implemented St. Johns River’s first bachelor of science degree in organizational management and helped garner a $1.9 million federal grant for the college’s nursing programs. She is a member of the Reaccreditation Leadership Team and the Institutional Planning Council. Lebesch is an active member of numerous Clay County associations and chairs the county’s economic development council.
Jeanna Mastrodicasa, PhD
Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs
University of Florida
In her current post, Dr. Mastrodicasa developed the UF Division of Student Affairs’ 2010-2015 strategic plan and submitted all materials for the SACS five-year accreditation review. She has made assessment an integrated part of the division’s work processes. In her previous position as associate director of the UF Honors program, she reorganized the university’s undergraduate research program and managed applications for Fulbright Scholars from UF. Mastrodicasa has co-authored a book about the millennial generation in the workforce and is serving her second three-year term as a Gainesville city commissioner.
Christopher Mullin, PhD
Program Director for Policy Analysis
American Association of Community Colleges (D.C.)
Dr. Mullin provides analysis and data to guide AACC’s advocacy efforts on causes such as federal student financial assistance and college costs and policies. He has written 30 policy documents, 10 peer-reviewed journal articles, four book chapters, and edited one book. Mullin serves on the advisory boards of the national Pathways to College Network, the National Education Finance Conference and the Gates Research Advisory Board of the Institute for Higher Education Policy.
Tina Barreiro O’Daniels, EdD
St. Petersburg College, Tarpon Springs Campus (Fla.)
As the college’s No. 2 administrator, Dr. O’Daniels supports the provost in operating a 120-acre campus with 6,000 students at the Tarpon Springs campus of St. Petersburg College. She serves as associate provost and also is chief student affairs officer and student dean, while participating in collegewide strategic planning and policy implementation. She is an editorial board member for the Council for the Study of Community Colleges and continues to serve as an executive coach and learning plan mentor for UF’s Institute of Higher Education.
Brian Polding, PhD
Chair, College of Information Systems and Technology, & School of Business
North Florida campus of the University of Phoenix
Dr. Polding, the North Florida campus 2011 Outstanding Employee, has chaired the School of Business for 11 years and also is acting director of academic affairs. He supervises eight faculty area chairs and 80 part-time faculty members and is a member of the university president’s academic cabinet. He also teaches and serves on doctoral dissertation committees. He has consulted with companies such as IBM and AT&T on the development of management training programs. Polding is a Supreme Court certified mediator for the Florida Family Courts.
Kristy Presswood, PhD
Associate Vice President, College of Education
Daytona State College (Fla.)
Dr. Presswood has worked in numerous divisions in her 18 years at Daytona State. She was instrumental in the early implementation of a campus computer network and an online student services system, and currently oversees adult education and the School of Education. The education school has a robust system of tracking all pre-service teachers, and Presswood’s future plans call for automating processes that will advance faculty advising, student tracking and field experience tracking for the school and college.
Deanne Williams, EdD
Associate Professor and Chair, Hospitality Management Department
Virginia State University
Williams spearheaded the accreditation of VSU’s hospitality management program that led to its transition from program to department status. She also obtained grants to provide low-income students with scholarships, which had a direct effect on graduation rates. She also serves as an American Council on Education Internationalization committee member and launched the university’s first formal study-abroad curriculum. Williams is a member of the Petersburg Area Tourism Board and the National Advisory Board of the Disney College Program.
UF’s institute of Higher Education works closely with its affiliate colleges in offering continuing professional development opportunities for practitioners and conducting needed research in the field of higher education and community college administration.
The Community College Futures Assembly, now in its 18th year, convenes annually as an independent national policy forum for key opinion leaders to work as a “think tank” in identifying critical issues facing the future of community colleges. The group also conducts the nationally recognized Bellwether Awards to honor trend-setting community colleges.
SOURCE: Dale Campbell, interim director, School of Human Development and Organizational Studies in Education, Uf College of Education, email@example.com; 352-273-4300.
MEDIA RELATIONS: Larry Lansford, Director, COE News & Communications, UF College of Education, firstname.lastname@example.org; 352-273-4137