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Long-term peer support created through HEA’s Executive Development Programme

Tuesday, 16 February, 2016

Fifteen senior higher education managers have graduated from the HEA’s first Executive Development Programme (EDP).

The ten-month EDP is designed to support those at PVC/DVC/Vice Principal level (or equivalent). It is especially relevant to those with portfolios covering education, learning and teaching, student experience and academic development to enhance their leadership capacity and consolidate their understanding of the dynamic higher education landscape. It comprises three main elements: residential seminars, visits and engagement; and resources and activities including action-learning sets.

Steve Williams, Director of Information Systems and Services at Newcastle University, said: “This is an excellent programme. The scope is wide and the focus properly strategic. The skilled facilitators keep the pace high, and the materials are thought-provoking and beautifully worded. The HEA has access to speakers who are genuine experts... I'd recommend the programme to those who lead learning and teaching in their institutions…I'll take both my learning and a network of good contacts into my work in the future.”

Head of Learning and Teaching & Senior Lecturer at London Studio Centre, Dr Lise Uytterhoeven, summed up her experience saying: “The [EDP] programme has made me see that confidence in my strategic vision is crucial. The residential seminars offer a set of well-curated opportunities to hear from sector leaders in the UK and abroad, who generously share their insights and the approaches that they have developed. Through discussions and action learning, open and honest reflections on leadership styles and behaviours are fostered, and so, as participants, we have been able to create a longer-term peer support network for the future.”

Chief Executive of the HEA, Professor Stephanie Marshall, said: “I have been inspired by the passion and commitment of all the participants throughout the programme and have been proud to see how they have developed their skills, confidence and strategic understanding over the months. I am sure that not only the participants themselves but also their teams, institutions, and students will reap the rewards of their work. They will continue to benefit through the collaborative networks they have built over the past ten months.”

The second HEA Executive Development Programme, beginning in April, is already fully booked. However, bookings will open shortly for the third series, which begins in April 2017.

Those working at institutions with different leadership structures are welcome to make further enquiries about the programme’s suitability by emailing EDP@heacademy.ac.uk.