Four academic leaders at East Carolina University will participate in a statewide program for women in higher education beginning next month.
The professors were selected for BRIDGES XIII, an intensive academic leadership initiative for women in higher education. Designed to help women identify, understand and move into leadership roles, the annual program offers a series of workshops in Chapel Hill.
The four women representing ECU are Sylvia Brown, a professor and associate dean for the graduate program in the School of Nursing; Virginia Hardy, interim senior associate dean for academic affairs at the Brody School of Medicine; Karla Hughes, dean of the College of Human Ecology; and Catherine Rigsby, chair of the Faculty Senate and a faculty member in geology.
ECU Chancellor Steve Ballard said, “It is important to encourage all members of the ECU community to develop their full leadership potential. By representing East Carolina in this distinguished program, these four women send a clear message of their intent to prepare for current and future leadership positions. The insights they gain will prove invaluable.”
The program, which is sponsored by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, is held for four weekends from Sept. 16 to Nov. 19. Since its inception in 1993, more than 400 women have completed the program from public and private universities across North Carolina.
The theme for this year’s program is “Transforming Leadership.” The program focuses on developing insights into leadership, acquiring an understanding of the many facets of colleges and universities and refining cross-cultural communication skills.
This year the program will emphasize ways to help North Carolina women in higher education claim, strengthen and exercise leadership capacities.
Other topics that will be addressed are: financial and legal issues, human resources and risk management and the crucial role of fundraising for colleges and universities. Participants will create an individual professional plan and an action plan for transformational change.