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UC Davis Launches PD, Research Program for Community Colleges

The University of California, Davis, School of Education, in partnership with California Community Colleges, has launched Wheelhouse: The Center for Community College Leadership and Research, a new professional development and research program designed to support current and future leaders of California community colleges.

Community college presidents and chancellors often have to travel out of state for professional development and support, according to Brice W. Harris, chancellor of California Community Colleges, and the turnover rate for community college leaders is double that of leaders of four-year universities. "These leaders are responsible for some of the most important gears in California's economic engine," said Harris in a news release. "But their average rate of turnover is just too high. We need more ways to support them and prepare their successors for the challenges ahead, and we need to do it here."

Each year, Wheelhouse will bring together 20 sitting and aspiring CEOs and senior executives of California community colleges for a year-long professional development institute on leadership. The institute on leadership experience will convene four times annually in October, January, April and July. At the conclusion of each program in July, participants will receive a Wheelhouse Leadership credential from the USD School of Education.

In addition to the professional development program, Wheelhouse will also "conduct, translate and disseminate rigorous, timely, independent research briefs to inform policy development for college leaders, trustees and state policymakers," according to a news release from UC Davis.

Wheelhouse is funded by UC Davis, the Hearst Foundations, the Foundation for California Community Colleges and a United States Department of Education Institute for Education Sciences grant to a research team led by Michal Kurlaender, lead researcher and associate professor for the UC Davis School of Education.

Further information about Wheelhouse: The Center for Community College Leadership and Research can be found on the UC Davis School of Education's site.

About the Author

Leila Meyer is a technology writer based in British Columbia. She can be reached at [email protected].

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