We have all likely encountered Transportation Security Administration (TSA) professionals and it’s clear that they have an extremely difficult job protecting our nation’s transportation infrastructure and each one of us when we travel. Earlier this week, we proudly announced a significant expansion of our existing TSA partnership. American Public University (APU) was selected by the TSA’s Institute of Higher Education as one of just two partners in education from a total field of 19 institutions nationwide to serve up to 20,000 TSA employees at 147 airports across 14 states and five U.S. territories.
Editor’s Note: From time to time in this space, we want to share stories from our alumni as they relate their experiences with APUS and how they have impacted their careers and personal lives. This week, we feature the story of Matt Peeling, AMU Business graduate, University Ambassador and member, APUS Alumni Advisory Council. We encourage you to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to share your own APUS journey with us as well.
I was very active throughout my youth, volunteering as a fire fighter and moonlighting as a gas station manager at 16. In high school, I excelled in football and aspired to play in college. College was not affordable for me or my siblings, so I decided to pursue a military career to fund my education, carry on family tradition and keep playing football.
There are many benefits to seeking change for an individual or organization. Having a willingness to move from the status quo requires being aware of the need to adapt and remain relevant in an ever-changing society. This need to adapt and remain relevant in an ever-changing society became our challenge in shifting our Core Learning department’s culture to develop 21st-century practitioners. In short, our faculty needed to shift their legacy instructional practices to better anticipate and meet the corresponding needs of 21st-century learners by fostering those skills themselves, including creativity, analytic thinking, collaboration, communications and ethics, action, and accountability (Crockett, 2016). The award-winning APUS Group Coaching and Mentoring Framework (GCMF) became the strategy to affect that desired change.
I love learning, I love teaching, and I’m a better teacher when I’m also learning. Despite a terminal degree, in my mind an additional master's made perfect sense. I’ve put that specific degree on hold, for now, but I learned that not all online programs are created equal.
The enthusiastic response from APUS faculty to the end-of-year “Service Challenge,” offered insight into the solid culture of service within our ranks. As part of the APUS Wellness Program, the Challenge grew out of a trend within workplace wellness circles that point to the ability for one to connect with his or her purpose as a key ingredient of well-being. Add that to a growing body of research showing the positive impact of selfless service and volunteer work on personal health and well-being, and a challenge was born. While faculty typically account for, at most, 25% of participation levels in our programs, they comprised nearly 50% of Challenge participants during the last quarter of 2016. Among the 30 who participated, three shared their experiences for this article.
Strategic focus and savvy time management are key leadership success criteria. Over the next several months, through the first quarter of 2017, we will be focused on several critical supporting priorities for APUS, including the topic of today’s post, leadership onboarding and development, along with leadership “Listen and Learn” and strategic planning. Other key institutional priorities such as curriculum quality, teaching excellence and strategic enrollment and relationship management will be addressed in future posts.