Associate Professor Leadership Development Program at UCSD

Without question, UC San Diego’s faculty are among the most accomplished academics in their fields; only those with the highest caliber skills in research, teaching and service achieve tenure at UC San Diego.

The years leading up to achieving tenure are demanding and stressful. However the transition to life as a tenured faculty member comes with a new set of challenges. Tenured faculty often will begin to take on greater responsibilities in the life of their department, their professional organizations and societies, and in service to the University. They will also take on even greater roles in advising and mentoring students and junior faculty, evaluation of their peers, and in supervision of staff, graduate students, and/or research personnel, all while maintaining excellent research and teaching.

As our newly tenured faculty begin to contribute even more to the University’s academic, diversity and service oriented mission, we are equally committed to investing in their long-term success.

We have thus sought to understand the specific needs of our faculty and, through a number of forums (including various task force and summit reports, the recent University of California Climate Survey, UC San Diego’s Faculty Exit survey process, feedback from the Women's Leadership Alliance, and via small faculty and administration focus groups), we have received candid, meaningful feedback about the unique challenges facing newly tenured faculty.

It is clear the professional success of faculty hinges not only upon achievement in research and teaching, but also on a faculty member’s ability to grow personally and to achieve a satisfying balance between the many roles and responsibilities  - as leader, teacher, mentor, advisor, colleague, and more – of faculty.   Therefore, in partnership with the Rady School of Management Center for Executive Leadership, UC San Diego is establishing the Associate Professor Leadership Development Program as one way to support our faculty in achieving long-term professional success

Program Objectives:

Empower Associate Professors by providing them the skills, knowledge and resources necessary to effectively and confidently fulfill their many roles and responsibilities beyond performing research - as leaders, teachers, mentors, advisors, colleagues, supervisors, and more.

Ensure Associate Professors understand the organization of UC San Diego, how information flows, and how decisions are made in order to enable professors to better achieve their individual goals.  

Provide a forum in which to build relationships and a support network among Associate Professors across the campus.

Provide coaching and mentoring by senior faculty and campus leaders to participants throughout the program and after the program is finished.

Develop a diverse group of potential campus leaders.

Create and sustain an inspired and motivated faculty who feel invested in the success of the University and supported by the University.

Program Eligibility

The program is designed for General Campus and SIO Ladder-Rank professors and Lecturers with Security of Employment who have recently been promoted to tenure or to Security of Employment, and faculty recently appointed at the Associate or LSOE level.

Faculty who achieve tenure and Security of Employment or are appointed effective July 1 will be invited the fall quarter following achievement of tenure or SOE to participate in the APLDP in the winter and spring quarter.

If an invited faculty member wishes to attend but cannot in the first year, they may ask to participate in a future year. In each year priority will be given to those who are newly tenured as of July 1, and then to those who have deferred participation to a future year.

If there are still spots available after these two groups, divisional deans, the Vice Chancellor for Marine Sciences, and the Vice Chancellor for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion will be asked to nominate faculty to participate, particularly focusing on rewarding faculty who are serving in critical campus leadership roles and/or providing substantial contributions to diversity to the campus or community.

Participation Requirements

Participants are expected to complete at least 80% of the sessions, plus the pre-session and debrief session.
Participants are also asked to serve as mentors and advisors for future year participants and provide feedback and share experiences that will help enrich the program participant’s leadership experience.

Program Courses:

The program consists of two 1 hour meetings and 9 half day sessions over a 6 month period.  Courses include:

  • Pre-Session: Program Introduction
  • Time Management
  • Conflict Resolution
  • Negotiation Skills
  • Cultural Intelligence
  • Emotional Intelligence
  • Public Speaking
  • Coaching & Mentoring
  • Organization Development
  • Change Management
  • Course Debrief and Certificate Ceremony

For more information, contact Lynn Field-Karsh at