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NUTN network leadership Powell

Women in Leadership: Thoughts from NUTN 35

Participating on a panel of women leaders at the NUTN conference on October 11 in San Antonio provided the opportunity for reflection on our journey as leaders. The panel was facilitated by Dr. Pam Quinn, provost of the LeCroy Center, Dallas County Community College District. My co-panelists included Dr. Diane Melby, president of Our Lady of the Lake University in San Antonio, and Dr. Adelina Silva, vice chancellor for student success, Alamo Community College District.

What an amazing group of women leaders! In addressing our personal pathways to leadership and the most important characteristics to achieve it, it was fascinating to hear the ways our stories intersected. Common themes included never setting out on a path for a particular position, i.e., who really grows up thinking “I will become a provost, president, or chancellor?” This is especially true for those of us who are first-generation college graduates.

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digital literacy Powell

Digital Information Literacy: Preparing Students, Graduates, and Alumni for the Workforce

APUS programs are designed so that students can demonstrate proficiency in several learning areas upon completing their academic course of study. These proficiencies include applied learning, intellectual skill, specialized knowledge, broad knowledge, civic learning, and digital information literacy. While a focus on each of the learning areas required of graduates at all degree levels is essential, this post is focused on digital literacy proficiency.

By focusing on digital literacy, APUS aims to set our students apart from other graduates seeking employment and/or career advancement by developing and enhancing our student’s ability to communicate precisely and creatively using tools to engage, interact, and create visually effective and professional artifacts. Creativity and competence in the selection and safe, ethical use of digital resources are essential skills in the workplace for all employees – now and for the future. In fact, digital skills are emerging as a key job skill for the future – a future that is already here.

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Emergency management Portfolium Challenge Junkens

How My AMU Experience Helped Set the Course for My Emergency Management Career

My educational experience at American Military University has had a profound impact on my career in emergency management. Within a year of starting my master’s degree in homeland security, I was asked to teach at another university where I instructed ROTC. This opportunity allowed me to highlight the knowledge I gained from AMU and helped me form valuable relationships with the head of the criminal justice department and the director of public safety that facilitated subsequent employment.

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retired president of APUS Karan Powell

The Charlottesville Imperative

Like most Americans, I was both saddened and disturbed by the recent tragedy in Charlottesville. While these events left me feeling aghast and somewhat speechless, I nonetheless felt compelled to write in solidarity with college, university presidents and leaders nationwide, and especially with President Teresa Sullivan and our nearby neighbors at the University of Virginia and greater Charlottesville. The violence and atrocities, including the death of an innocent bystander, are reprehensible. There is no place for hatred and violence of any kind on our campuses or in our communities and, in fact, these actions are contrary to the core values we value and uphold as both educators and as citizens.

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Duclos AMU Challenge

How I Rose to the AMU Challenge

I was an over-the-road truck driver for 12 years, mainly traveling from Minneapolis to Detroit on a dedicated run. Sometimes, I would finish my day at 2:00 or 3:00 in the afternoon with nothing else to do. While other drivers would go watch TV or play video games in their truck, I decided to go back to school. Since I could download the books onto either my iPad or laptop, I always had something to read while waiting for customers to load or unload me. When I would get home on weekends, I would already have all of the research done for the classes and was able to knock out the classwork in nothing flat.

I was able to finish both my bachelor’s and master’s degrees in transportation and logistics this way in about 3 ½ years. It took me only 14 months to complete my master’s degree, all while driving trucks. My hope was to be able to come off the road and have a college degree to fall back on.

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retired president of APUS Karan Powell

What Is the Solution to the High Cost of a College Degree?

The Chronicle of Higher Education recently featured a new venture that will offer free courses for college credit as part of a “freshman year for free” initiative. Last April, the state of New York announced that it would make college “tuition-free” for the middle-class at both two- and four-year colleges. In early August, Rhode Island, in turn, announced free community college. US News and World Report in 2012 reported on 12 colleges who exchange tuition for some sort of service and were cited as “tuition- free” institutions. And lastly, BestColleges.com recently reported the top 10 best colleges with free tuition. 

In a time of increased focus on affordability and completion, the questions that need to be addressed include: Is college really free? Who will pay for it? What is the value of college to students? To society?

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