UF Academy: Discover Your Leadership Potential

Please note:

  • Participants are selected via a competitive applicant process
  • Applications are being accepted April 1 – 30, 2014
  • Selection will be announced in late May 2014

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 tenth 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 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, Dr. Bob Parks.

Expected Outcomes

  • To 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.


The UF Academy Application is available here.

Selection Committee

Frank Bova, Past Chair, UF Faculty Senate
Paul D’Anieri, Dean, College of Liberal Arts & Sciences
Elias G. Eldayrie, Vice President and Chief Information Officer
Jodi Gentry, Assistant Vice President for Human Resource Services
Jamie Lewis Keith, Vice President and General Counsel
Angel Kwolek-Folland, Associate Provost
Elaine Turner, Dean, College of Agricultural and Life Sciences

UF Academy 2013-14

  • Stephen Anton, Assistant Professor and Interim Chief, Aging and Geriatric Research, College of Medicine
  • Shalon Buchs, Clinical Assistant Professor, School of Physician Assistant Studies, College of Medicine
  • Craig DeGarmo, Division Administrator; Nephrology, Hypertension, and Renal Transplantation; College of Medicine
  • Luisa Echeto, Clinical Associate Professor and Director, Department of Restorative Dental Sciences, College of Dentistry
  • Anne-Marie Hollingshead, Senior Accountant, UF Libraries
  • Nicole Iovine, Assistant Professor, Division of Infectious Disease and Global Medicine, Department of Medicine, College of Medicine
  • Kelly Jacoby, Research Administrator, Division of Sponsored Research
  • Michele Manuel, Assistant Professor, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, College of Engineering
  • Cathy Martyniak, Audiovisual Archivist, Special Collections, UF Libraries
  • Shane Massey, IT Senior/Application Support Manager, Enterprise Systems, UFIT
  • Charles Nelson, Assistant Director of Data Management, Institutional Planning and Research
  • Julie Neubig, Benefits Manager, Human Resource Services
  • Victoria Peprah-Asante, Coordinator 3, Accounting, Payroll and Tax Services, Finance and Accounting
  • Philip Pharr, Executive Director, Gator Boosters, University Athletic Association
  • Eric Segal, Education Curator of Academic Programs, Harn Museum of Art
  • Rasa Williamson, Manager, Continuing Medical Education, Faculty Group Practice, College of Medicine

Previous years’ participants