NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – The Tennessee Higher Education Commission has selected TSU’s Linda C. Spears to serve as part of its inaugural Higher Education Leadership and Innovation Fellows program.
Spears, the associate vice president for Human Resources, will serve with 14 others on the cohort-based professional development program to cultivate the next generation of enterprise leaders in higher education. She was nominated by TSU President Glenda Glover.
“I am so honored to be nominated by President Glover and to be ultimately selected as a fellow in the inaugural Tennessee Higher Education Leadership and Innovation Fellows program,” Spears said. “It is such an honor to represent TSU in this leadership development experience.”
According to a THEC release, Spears and her fellow cohorts will convene on campuses across the state to learn from experts and build extended networks. The program will facilitate individual development goals through professional assessments, one-on-one executive coaching, and mentoring networks and job shadowing experiences.
Among other responsibilities, the THEC fellows will facilitate leadership development through self-exploration and skill training; provide foundational principles of higher education policy and practice for exposure to all aspects of the higher education enterprise; as well as inspire ideas and cultivate new ways of thinking to shape the emerging paradigm of post-secondary education institutions.
“Addressing the challenges currently facing higher education will require leaders that are steeped in innovation and keenly focused on student success,” said Mike Krause, executive director of THEC. “This program will help Tennessee develop a cohort of higher education professionals ready to excel in executive positions.”
Spears said although the program is demanding, she hopes to gain more insight into the strategic operations of higher educational institutions to “prepare me for greater service and advancement opportunities.”
An operational improvement advocate throughout her career, Spears has developed a management leadership training program, introduced an electronic personnel action system, and developed many highly effective workflow processes. She hopes to bring that experience of professional development to her new role as a THEC fellow.
“This inaugural class will help to shape the future of this program,” she added.
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Founded in 1912, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university, and is a premier, historically black university and land-grant institution offering 38 bachelor’s degree programs, 24 master’s degree programs, and seven doctoral degrees. TSU is a comprehensive research intensive institution with a R-2 Carnegie designation, and has a graduate school on its downtown Avon Williams Campus, along with the Otis Floyd Nursery Research Center in McMinnville, Tennessee. With a commitment to excellence, Tennessee State University provides students with a quality education in a nurturing and innovative environment that prepares them as alumni to be global leaders in every facet of society. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu.