Graduation Year

2008

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree

Ed.D.

Degree Granting Department

Adult, Career, and Higher Education

Major Professor

Donald A. Dellow, Ed.D.

Keywords

Leadership crisis, Competencies, Development, Succession

Abstract

At a time when strong leadership is needed to guide community colleges forward, a major crisis seems to be stirring (Eddy & VanDerLinden, 2006). According to some estimates, 45% of community college presidents will have retired by 2007 (Shults, 2001) and an even worse prediction offered by Weisman and Vaughan (2002) predict 79% of community college presidents will be retired by 2012. Echoing this view, Amey et al. (2002) assert that there is much work to be done in preparing the younger generations of community college leaders with skills and competencies necessary to meet this leadership challenge. There were two primary purposes addressed in this study. First, to further validate the AACC competencies by determining how current presidents and trustee board chairpersons from the states of New York and Florida rated the importance of the AACC (2005) characteristics and professional skills for effective community college leadership.

Second, to identify those experiences and practices that community college presidents reported as helpful to their development of the six AACC leadership competencies. The results of this study provide support for the value of the six AACC competencies and offer important insights into the specific experiences that contributed to the development of these competencies for community college presidents. Specifically, there was consensus among New York and Florida community college presidents and trustee board chairpersons that all six competencies identified by AACC are "very" or "extremely" important for the success of community college leaders. Additionally, this study supported the philosophy that leader development is learned in many ways and that various leadership experiences contribute differently to the development of the AACC Competencies for Community College Leaders, some apparently more relevant to certain competencies than others.

In conclusion, the results of this study provide community college leaders, boards of trustees, hiring committees and leadership development programmers with additional validation on the AACC competencies and those experiences and practices that community college presidents reported as helpful to their development of the six AACC leadership competencies.

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