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The Perceptions of Past and Current UCEDD Directors on Transitioning in and out of the Role of UCEDD Director. SPEAKERS Fred Orelove, PhD , Former Director, Partnership for People with Disabilities at Virginia Commonwealth University

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  1. The Perceptions of Past and Current UCEDD Directors on Transitioning in and out of the Role of UCEDD Director SPEAKERS Fred Orelove, PhD, Former Director, Partnership for People with Disabilities at Virginia Commonwealth University Hill Walker, PhD, Former Director, University of Oregon UCEDD George Jesien, PhD, Executive Director , Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD)

  2. Overview • Results of interviews of 5 past and 5 newer UCEDD Directors • Key considerations in planning a transition • Why are transitions so difficult? • Questions & answers

  3. Interview Results Fred Orelove, PhD Former Director, Partnership for People with Disabilities at Virginia Commonwealth University

  4. UCEDD Director Transition Survey • Phone interviews with 5 former, 5 recent directors (7 different UCEDDs) • Range of geography, center size • Asked prepared questions

  5. Results: Former Directors • All 5 directors long-serving • 3 had long transition process; 2 short time • 3 conducted search; 2 appointed from within • Director role in process varied, but usually had strong role • University officials were key • Transition steps contingent on time available

  6. Results: New Directors • Stability of center important • Information, preparation varied widely • Would have liked: • Clarity on budgets • Clear organizational chart • Better understanding of staff, university roles • Better sense of the center

  7. New Director Results (cont’d) • Better preparation for job: • Finance, personnel within university • Visiting other centers • Helpful to be introduced to state officials • Advice for directors preparing to leave: • Succession planning; grooming internal person • Organize, summarize information, files

  8. Final Thoughts • Succession planning critical, but no guarantee for internal successor to handle job • Technical assistance to out-going director, program can be very useful • External mentor for new director can be very helpful • Many approaches to succession, no one way guarantees success

  9. Key Considerations Hill Walker, PhD Former Director, University of Oregon UCEDD

  10. Goals of the Transition Process • Continue a successful program • Leverage a program change of direction • Use of transition process to recruit a UCEDD director who can serve other university, college or school needs and priorities

  11. Timing of Transitions • Establish a long lead-time to lay adequate groundwork with: • departmental/college administrators, university office of research administration, affirmative action, human resources, office of the provost and other units as appropriate • Transitions occurring in concert with 5-year core grant applications • Transitions occurring during a current 5-year grant cycle

  12. Role of the Outgoing Director • Lead role versus limited or no involvement • Continued UCEDD participation versus full retirement or other assignment • Advisory functions

  13. Factors Impacting Success • Host university perception of program and current director • Availability of interested pool of qualified candidates • Tensions between UCEDD mission and departmental and/or college priorities

  14. Factors Impacting Success 2 • Extent to which host institution has a written policy on replacement of Institute and Center Directors and adheres to same • Willingness of host university (at various administrative levels) to offer incentives to potential new director at the time of recruitment

  15. Why are transitions so difficult? George Jesien, PhD Executive Director , Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD)

  16. UCEDD Leadership Transition:Why can it be so difficult?

  17. Because a Director plays so many roles and functions

  18. Because she/he touches and influences at so many levels

  19. Spheres of Knowledge and Influence staff colleagues practices/processes policies organizations state community institution department/ school

  20. UCEDD Leadership A UCEDD Leader influences, promotes and moves individuals, practices and policies toward the achievement of the ADA and DD Act vision of full participation, integration of all people with disabilities into the social and economic fabric of our society.

  21. Because there are responsibilities in so many areas

  22. University Community • Intra & Interdepartmental engagement & responsibility • Administrative Report – Provost, Dean, Dept. Head • Grants & Contract Administration – Business Office • Recruitment, Diversity, Hiring, Personnel Polices, Merit • Space & location • Promotion & Tenure • Personal research agenda & publications • Liaison with other state campuses

  23. Does the director have to do all of these? • No • But yes to some extent…….. • Or have good people who can work as a team to cover these areas • Also, don’t have to do all at the same time • Each adds: • to your capacity, • potential for impact and • ability to secure the resources to carry out your mission

  24. Because one may have little control over process

  25. Search & Selection Process • Often run by outside chair & academic search committee who may: • Have incomplete knowledge of roles, functions and expectations for director • Lack of full understanding of need for continual resource development • Minimize the importance of local and state partners and expectations of funders • Inadequate understanding of complexities of position and the numerous constituencies involved • Have insufficient knowledgeable input & meaningful participation • Who may be outside of one’s control or guidance

  26. Steps to make it easier

  27. Consider doing the following: • Plan – personally and jointly with center/program leadership • Unpack the position – responsibilities, relationships, areas of function • Bus or Tahiti exercise – what if? • Distribute opportunities for new learning and role development • Educate – potential search committee members, deans, departments heads • Talk to others that have gone through the process • Consider bringing in a outsider • Envision the transition as a platform to launch new opportunities!

  28. Comments Or Questions

  29. Contacts Fred Orelove George Jesien forelove@vcu.edugjesien@aucd.org Hill Walker Dawn Rudolph hwalker@uoregon.edudrudolph@aucd.org www.aucd.org/urc > Leadership Development

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