Norwich’s Leadership Program – A Faculty Member’s Perspective
Rex: My full time capacity is serving as a Police Chief for the city of Lincoln, California where I’m into innovation and leadership change within our organization to grow the city in a proper and smart way.
In my off time I’m pursuing my doctorate degree in public policy administration with a concentration in terrorism, leadership, and sustainability and livability of communities. My role here as the Associate Program Director is really to focus on the development of curriculum, faculty, and support to the students who are involved in all of our programs.
The Master of Science and Leadership program is a designed to be 36 credit curriculum. Within that we have concentrations that have been developed specifically to enhance the leadership development in specific areas of professional leadership. So with the five concentrations that are currently being offered, we have the public sector area which is public sector, military, and government leadership where the concentration focuses heavily on the public sector exposure and the leadership role within those environments – different than the standard leadership of a private sector corporation, for example.
Also touches a little bit on the non-profit leadership side as well. Giving students who want to pursue want to a role in those particular capacities an extra edge and a little more focus on getting them to how you lead a non-profit organization today and make it successful.
Human research management leadership is a concentration that will specifically look at how we address some of the most pressing issues today in human resources. How do sustain and revitalize organizations, how do we recruit in those roles, and then how do we lead an organization that’s experiencing transformation and change.
Hospitality leadership management systems concentration will, again, focus heavily on hospitality at a larger scale. So for example, within the hotel chains there’s a specific structure of leadership that is expected and necessary to be successful. So through our concentration designs we have focused the material to give the students the best perspective of what those challenges are today, how do we make the company successful and profitable at the same time while engaging with the employees and giving them a sense of place within that organization.
Leading change management consulting is a concentration that allows students to explore career opportunities as consultants after, or, in addition to the career fields that they currently pursue. This exposure will teach them how to address change initiatives within an organization and understand the elements of change from a leadership perspective. Merely going in and guiding an organization or counselling them is the simplistic version. What we try to offer them is an opportunity for them to go deeper into the organization understanding the culture change that takes place as well.
Organizational leadership is the flagship of our program. This concentration focuses on leading change initiatives in any organization whether it be in a public or a private setting. Students will engage in discussions and development of papers and assignments that will give them a portfolio to take with them at the end of the seminar and at the end of their program when they graduate. It will hopefully be a map, if you will, for them to develop their organization or address challenges and problems that exist within their organization in the future.
So the Master of Science and Leadership program here at Norwich is unique. Part of the issue is why you want to pursue a degree in leadership. I’m often approached by individuals who are seeking a graduate program and they seek the program based on what they are currently doing rather than what they want to do. So the example would be pursuing an MBA degree when you really want to develop your skills as a leader.
As a student myself of the Master of Science and Leadership program here at Norwich, I was similar to many of the inquiries that I’ve heard of other students is what is right for me and why is leadership important?
Having already an MPA degree, I found the need to explore the leadership aspects in greater depth. For me, on a personal level, this was a challenge to expand my own lifelong learning, but on a professional level it gave me the additional tools to help develop my own organization and the organization of a city on a larger perspective. Going forward as an instructor I now can bring the real life experiences of that experience of myself to this classroom and give it to the students to allow them to help apply what they are learning.