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Author Topic: How to get foot in the door?  (Read 8546 times)
New member
Posts: 1

« on: April 14, 2012, 8:48:02 pm »

I am a department chair and faculty member at a small community college. I have a strong desire to move into administration (VP level) because honestly, I like the day to day work. I have worked hard to achieve the skills and knowledge needed for six years. I have become involved in accreditation and peer reviewing. I have performed several site visits throughout the United States and India.  I am on several committees including our accreditation steering committee and our assessment committee.  I am the president of the faculty senate where I have been successful in achieving many positive changes.  I have worked on many institutional projects. For example, I have recently completed state articulation agreements for our CTE programs that will allow high school students from across the state to receive advanced credit at our college for specific programs. I also started an online program from scratch including obtaining approval from the board of regents and developing all of the courses. I am very active in the community including the Chamber of Commerce.

Yet, I am having trouble moving into administration.  The culture of my institution seems to only award promotions to those who have been at the college for 20 years even if they have not accomplished much in those years. They seem to only reward tenure.  I have been there 7 years.  I am 46 and do not want to wait for 20 years!  I don't know how to break in.  Any suggestions?
practice makes perfect
Distinguished Senior Member
Posts: 26,865

Have you worked on that project today?

« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2012, 10:01:59 pm »

Start applying to other institutions that have openings in administration.

I've joined a bizarre cult called JordanCanonicalForm's Witnesses.  I have to go from door to door asking people things like, "Good evening, sir!  Do you have a moment to chat about Linear Transformations?"
Posts: 106

« Reply #2 on: April 15, 2012, 10:53:22 pm »

Start applying to other institutions that have openings in administration.

x2.  In order to move up, one often has to move out.
Not sure he's been around long enough to really be a
Distinguished Senior Member
Posts: 11,080


« Reply #3 on: April 15, 2012, 10:55:52 pm »

Or provide a credible threat of leaving; an offer from another place (that you are willing to take) sometimes opens opportunities at your own institution.

Fat, drunk, and stupid is no way to go through life, son.  --Dean Vernon Wormer

Administrators leverage their synergies to deliver customer-driven educational product to their students while achieving excellence in performance-driven deliverables to their stakeholders
Distinguished Senior Member
Posts: 3,739

« Reply #4 on: April 16, 2012, 4:41:00 pm »

I think it would be unusual at most schools to promote to the VP level after just 7 years at the institution.  What you've listed here is a good portfolio on the assessment side, but what about committee work, tenure and promotion work (if your school has it), budget management, management of faculty.  I would try to find a mentor in your administration, if you want to stay.  Get involved in committees that give you access to the inner workings of your institution.   (Your list seems more externally/assessment related).  And definitely look at job opportunities elsewhere, because it is easier to move up when you move away.
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