Presidents’ Academy

During the initial phase of Envisioning Excellence for Community College Leadership, the Belk Center established an Advisory Board composed primarily of North Carolina community college presidents, as well as community college system representatives. The Board requested that we explore the possibility of facilitating programs for presidents and system representatives to better equip all presidents to lead institutional changes related to improving student access, including completion, equity, teaching and learning, as well as equity outcomes.

Key Partners in Development

Using the planning grant period funded by the JMBE, we convened members of the Professional Development Committee of the NCACCP, the NCCC System Office, and the NCACCT to confirm the need for such leadership development efforts and gain their endorsement and support for jointly developing professional development programs. The NCACCP Professional Development Committee unanimously voted to support these efforts and pledged their willingness to work with us in jointly developing such programming. In addition, leaders in the NCCC System Office and the NC Student Success Center saw our efforts as complimenting plans they were leading with the colleges. The next stage of planning work with the NCACCP Professional Development Committee identified the top priority issues for professional development which were then integrated into presidential leadership programs collaboratively designed and delivered by NC presidents, the Belk Center and national partners.


About the Presidents’ Academy

The Belk Center’s Presidents’ Academy provides crucial support to North Carolina Community College Presidents by refocusing leadership and governance on community college excellence and student outcomes. Executive leadership programming began in early 2019 and has been offered consistently ever since in retreat and virtual settings to scaffold learning around the issues identified by the NCACCP. Understanding the critical role of governing boards in college leadership, the Presidents’ Academy also integrates leadership development for trustees by emphasizing president and board chair relations and highlighting the student success agenda, evidence-based decision making, continuous institutional improvement, policy governance, fiduciary responsibilities, and more.

The Presidents’ Academy unifies leadership development efforts that exist across North Carolina. The Academy cultivates crucial leadership competencies and orients community colleges toward the student success outcomes agenda by bringing critical knowledge and resources from national organizations to address issues in North Carolina. The Belk Center’s coordination encourages collaboration and synergy. Ultimately, it enables presidents to pursue sound goals that promote student success, and trustees to understand and actively support presidents in their efforts.

The Presidents' Academy in the News

EdNC: Community college leaders reflect on Belk Center’s Presidents’ Academy Conference

The Belk Center’s first Presidents’ Academy and Statewide Leadership Conference (SLC) was held on Thursday, May 23, 2019 at the Guilford Technical Community College’s Conference Center in Colfax, North Carolina. The conference focused on the critical role North Carolina’s community colleges and leaders play in creating a “grow our own” workforce strategy to fuel the state’s expanding high-skills economy and accelerate economic mobility for more North Carolinians.

Belk Center Brings Community College Presidents, Trustees Together to Discuss Ways to Improve Student Outcomes, Economic Mobility at 1st Presidents’ Academy

What role do community colleges play in realizing this goal and enhancing North Carolina economic competitiveness, and how can they help the state’s residents improve their economic mobility and meet future workforce demands? Presidents and trustees of community colleges from across North Carolina weighed those questions Thursday, May 23, 2019, during the Belk Center for Community College Leadership and Research’s first Presidents’ Academy statewide leadership conference.