The Emerging Leader: The UF Academy


Please note:

  • Participants are selected via a competitive applicant process
  • Applications will be considered by the UF Leadership Development Selection Committee, with selection being announced in late May 2017
  • The Emerging Leader: The UF Academy

    Designed for emerging leaders at our institution, the UF Academy is a 9-month program that provides a UF-specific approach for up to 15 recognized star achievers who are “emerging leaders” at our institution. Entering its thirteenth year, the UF Academy focuses on immersion in the university culture and exposure to its organizational structure.

    To participate in the Academy, an employee must be exempt with at least two years of supervisory or decision-making responsibility at the University of Florida and meet the additional criteria described below. Assistant directors and above, as well as interested faculty members with fewer than two years at the university may apply.

    Program Structure and Content

    In this 9-month program, participants will meet with various representatives from the university and Gainesville. Typically, Academy members meet with the university president, UF vice presidents, and other key UF leaders. They travel to Tallahassee to meet with key legislators. Participants meet approximately two to three times a month over the course of the academic year. Total monthly time commitment ranges from 4 to 12 hours.

    Part of the program includes self-development—both a reading group to discuss relevant issues related to effective leadership as well as an all-day “Leadership Foundations” workshop. Job shadowing, observing key meetings, and other interactive activities round out the experience.

    Additionally, members of the participant group will be responsible for scheduling the identified meetings as part of their Academy experience—to include coordinating among the group for acceptable dates, times, and locations. This responsibility typically will rotate among group members, with assistance from the Academy Director, Tricia Bachus.

    Expected Outcomes

    • Develop future managers at the University of Florida by increasing participants’ knowledge of our university as a whole
    • Provide future leaders with skills and tools to more effectively manage and lead people
    • Inspire participants and influence greater commitment and loyalty to UF
    • Reinforce Human Resource Services’ mission to “retain and develop world-class faculty and staff”

    The UF Academy is designed to prepare participants for higher-level responsibilities at the University of Florida. Participation, however, is not a guarantee of future promotional opportunities. Instead, the Academy is a training and leadership tool.

    Benefits to Participants

    • An increased understanding of high-level issues that affect the University of Florida—managerial, legal, academic, community—as well as an increased understanding of the governance processes and systems in place on our campus
    • A better appreciation of the relationship between administrative and academic units on campus. This will be enhanced by networking and teamwork experienced by the participants
    • Opportunity to develop key leadership and managerial skills

    Participant Criteria

    Candidates for the UF Academy must meet the following criteria (at a minimum):

    • Supervisory support
    • Satisfactory performance reviews and attendance records
    • Two years in a supervisory or decision-making role at the University of Florida*
    • An exempt employee up to and including the director level

    * The “two years of experience” criterion is waived for employees at the assistant director level and above as well as interested faculty members.

    Fee to participate

    This year, the fee to participate is $500. All materials (including a 360-degree evaluation pre- and post-program), facilitation fees, and meals included when travel extends outside of Gainesville.

    Selection Committee

    Frank Bova
    Past Chair, UF Faculty Senate
    Jodi Gentry
    Vice President for Human Resource Services
    Charlie Lane
    Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer
    Jamie Lewis Keith
    Vice President and General Counsel
    Angel Kwolek-Folland
    Associate Provost
    Diane McFarlin
    Dean, College of Journalism and Communications
    Elaine Turner
    Dean, College of Agricultural and Life Sciences

    UF Academy 2016-17

    • Sheila Austin; Administrative Coordinator, IRB03
    • Ines Aviles-Spadoni; Research Coordinator III, Department of Civil & Coastal Engineering
    • Tammy Bleeker; Pediatric Medical Education Manager, College of Medicine
    • Melissa Emmett; Director, UF Online Enrollment Services, Enrollment Management
    • Roland Estrella; Manager, Clinical Research, Health Outcomes and Policy, College of Medicine
    • Cynthia Futral; Associate Director, Accounting; College of Law
    • Hal Grieb; Emergency Management Coordinator, Emergency Management
    • David Jennings; iDigBio Project Manager, Florida Museum of National History (NH-Ichthyology)
    • Keisha Jones; Employee Relations Manager, Human Resource Services
    • Briton Summers; Law Enforcement Lieutenant, UF Police
    • Stacey Willenborg; Director of Corporate Relations, Warrington College of Business
    • Sandra Gonzalez; Assistant Professor Medical Director CSC, Anesthesiology
    • Trysh Travis; Associate Professor, Women’s Studies, CLAS

    Previous years’ participants