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Academic Leadership Journal

Abstract

In a recent article in this journal, Betts, Urias, Chavez, and Betts (2009) argue that higher education faces a leadership shortage—due both to expected turnover in senior administrative positions and to lack of clear pathways into administration. As we have discussed elsewhere (Zappe & Gerdes, 2008), administration is not typically a long-term goal for those whose careers begin with faculty appointments. For the few who switch pathways to become academic administrators, an associate dean position often is the point of transition. Below, we describe the advantages of rotating associate dean positions, in which faculty members from the same institution leave the faculty for a fixed term and then return to the faculty. Based on our experience with this practice over the past 22 years, we have developed recommendations applicable to other institutions as well.

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