President's Leadership Academy

The application period for the inaugural cohort is now closed.  


Applications Available: September 8, 2017

Application Deadline: October 2, 2017

Cohort Selected: October 23, 2017

Cohort Announced: November 1, 2017

Leadership Academy begins: December 5, 2017

Leadership Academy graduation, celebration and reflections: December, 2018

Year at a glance

Eligibility: Faculty, Staff and Administrators

  • Willingness to stretch and grow
  • Positioned to assume increasing leadership responsibility in existing or future role
  • Respectful of our diverse community
  • Willing and able to attend all sessions and participate fully
  • Deliberately diverse blend of academic and administrative leaders from across the university
  • Support from Dean/VP/Manager/Department Chair
  • Minimum one (1) year at Fresno State

Purpose: To engage Fresno State leaders and emerging leaders in an interactive and reflective development experience that supports strategic priority #2.


  • To strengthen the culture of leadership at Fresno State.
  • To create a community of leaders who will help advance Fresno.  State’s mission to boldly educate and empower students for success.
  • To develop bench strength/a pipeline of leaders.
  • To enhance the capacity and capabilities of leaders by introducing leadership concepts, competencies and tools.

Guiding Principles:

  • Leadership exists throughout the university at all levels in all areas.
  • Our focus is on everyday leadership (leading from where you are)
    • how we influence and empower others
    • Leadership Development is a continuum (embed into culture)
    • Mission and values focused
      • Diversity and inclusion
      • Boldness - participants given creative space to be bold
    • Supporting a culture of service and appreciation
    • Strong Relational component  - create and support trust, confidentiality and safety among cohort

Effective leaders at Fresno State:

  •  Lead with authenticity, passion, energy, and engagement.
  •  Build and nurture great teams.
  •  Create and support an open and inclusive environment.
  •  Serve with fearless courage, unwavering integrity, and relentless  focus on supporting the Greater Good.

Program Structure:

Learning will be designed to occur on multiple levels:

Full cohort – up to 25 participants

  • Monthly ½ day – full day cohort gatherings over 12 months
    (Friday mornings 8 – noon; breakfast served)
  • Deliberately diverse representation from across divisions/schools/colleges
  • Emphasis on learning experiences that build on and are different from standard manager skill-building workshops
  • Competencies aligned with performance metrics
  • Programming will blend a practical understanding of:
    • university as a system (organizational structure/ field visits)
    • management skillset and leadership behaviors
    • personal development (resume, interviewing, developing a personal brand)

Small groups

  • Case study discussions
  • Discussions of complex and challenging landscape in higher education


  • Multi-rater feedback,  pre and post
  • Blend of in person and online learning
  • Development of individualized goals based on assessment results
  • A la carte skill building workshops available in person and online to support identified areas of development
  • Emphasis on reflection and accountability with participants applying principles with reflection/reporting back on learnings 
  • Participants asked to demonstrate leadership skills learned
    (in-dept project using The Leadership Challenge Workbook)
  • Ongoing communication with participant’s manager
  • Post program follow up and ongoing learning and networking for program alumni
  • Flexible and adaptable to meet diverse and unique needs of cohort
  • Participants will receive certificate at end of program

Assessment and Evaluation:

  • Pre-and post multi-rater feedback
  • Qualtrics surveys of program components conducted monthly
  • Program evaluation completed annually on program effectiveness and results achieved
  • Retention/Promotions
  • Workplace Quality Survey

Additional Information: 

In January 2016 a Task force task force of academic and administrative leaders was convened to assess current leadership programming at Fresno State and recommend the conceptual, strategic and operational design for a new program. Their work has resulted in the President's Leadership Academy. The inaugural cohort will begin in late 2017.

For more information please contact:

Kathleen Scott
Director Organizational Excellence 


Rudy Sanchez
Interim Associate Vice President for Faculty Affairs