Focusing on career advancement in higher education and preparing employees to be senior leaders is good for everyone: the organization, the students, the campus community, and the individuals looking to advance.

The Aspiring Directors Virtual Seminar Series, June 15–July 17, will provide you with knowledge and tools to advance into a senior-level role while helping you be a better employee where you are. Curriculum will consist of content universal to the field and career progression despite current institutional profile. Over the course of the series, attendees will explore:

  • Strategies and skill sets that support advancement in the profession.
  • Relevant trends impacting higher education—including change management, social justice, mental health, and fiscal management.
  • Competency development in assessment and planning; professional supervision and organizational leadership; emergency management and legal issues; and navigating institutional dynamics to manage resources effectively. 
  • Networking opportunities with a cohort of peers who can support you through your journey.


Week of June 15

On Your Own

  • Video Module – An introduction to using LearnUpon for the course
  • Video Module – Core competencies overview
  • Reading

Group Sessions

  • June 16, 2 p.m. Eastern – Career Advancement Panel
  • June 18, 4 p.m. Eastern – Speed Sharing
    Meet your colleagues in the Aspiring Directors Institute with this networking activity!
Week of June 23

On Your Own

  • Video Module – Professional Supervision
  • Participate in a discussion post

Group Sessions

  • June 23, 2 p.m. Eastern – Mental Health Panel
  • June 24, 2 p.m. Eastern – Beverage Break with Your Colleagues
  • June 25, 2 p.m. Eastern – Follow Up Discussion: Supporting Staff and Self
Week of June 30

On Your Own

  • Video Module – Human Resources Development
  • Reading
  • Participate in a discussion post

Group Sessions

  • June 30, 2 p.m. Eastern – Counter-Narratives in Career Advancement Panel
  • July 2, 2 p.m. Eastern – Follow Up Discussion: Career Advancement
Week of July 7

On Your Own

  • Video Module – Assessment and Strategic Planning
  • Reading
  • Participate in a discussion post

Group Sessions

  • July 7, 2 p.m. Eastern – Fiscal Management Panel
  • July 9, 2 p.m. Eastern – Discussion: Resource Allocation and Revenue Generation
Week of July 14

On Your Own

  • Video Module – Legal Issues and Risk Management
  • Participate in a discussion post

Group Sessions

  • July 14, 2 p.m. Eastern – Change Management Panel
  • July 16, 2 p.m. Eastern – Follow Up Discussion: Political Savvy for Directors
  • July 17, 4 p.m. Eastern – Wrap Up Celebration


By registering for this event, attendees will access:

  • Weekly feature sessions and panel discussions on key topics, with follow-up discussions with cohort members
  • Video modules produced for on-demand viewing
  • Curated reading materials related to competency areas
  • Private discussion forums to share ideas and learn from others
  • Networking and cohort building activities throughout the course
  • Digital copies of educational resources and participant information

You may find the full cancellation policy here.

Registration Details

Professional Member: $300
Professional Nonmember: $400

Register Now

Deadline: June 8

What to Expect

Course Format

This year, the Aspiring Directors Institute will consist of five weeks of online learning. Some aspects are asynchronous (done on your own time) and some are synchronous (done as a class). This program includes high engagement, not only with the content, but also with your peers and faculty. In addition to reading and viewing content, students will engage in class discussions through discussion boards and attend regularly scheduled virtual classroom sessions in real time. These virtual classroom sessions will be recorded for those for whom attendance is not possible.

Netiquette Expectations

It is expected that all participants actively participate in the discussion board and virtual classroom and that all participants are respectful to each other and adhere to all ACUI policies.

Technical Requirements

A computer with high-speed Internet connection will be required to submit and participate in course activities. A webcam is strongly encouraged for virtual classroom meetings.