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Leading with equity

In a successful conclusion of its first cohort since transitioning to the U, the New Leadership Academy held its annual NLA Summer Institute in Salt Lake City.

The New Leadership Academy (NLA) Fellows Program held its 2022 Summer Institute June 6-10th and was deemed a huge success by NLA Fellows and facilitators. This was the first cohort of NLA Fellows since the New Leadership Academy transitioned from the University of Michigan to the University of Utah and the first NLA Summer Institute held in Salt Lake City.

During this week, the New Leadership Academy also hosted its first in-person meeting of the NLA Advisory Board, where board members planned next steps toward achieving NLA’s goal of changing leaders, leadership and leadership development in higher education.

New Leadership Academy Fellows are talented leaders in higher education who recognize the importance of leading from a position of equity across all leadership roles—informal and formal—within and outside of higher education. Thirty-two NLA Fellows from across the U.S. and Canada gathered in the culminating retreat for the hybrid leadership development curriculum that ran from January to June 2022, with 11 Fellows from the University of Utah main and Health Sciences campuses.

NLA curriculum is rooted in research and scholarship, utilizing leadership theories and practices to inform leaders on how they can facilitate greater equity, diversity and inclusion in their organizations, public systems and across society.

The 2021-2022 NLA Fellows cohort standing and smiling in a group photo taken on a staircase during the NLA Summer Institute

The NLA Fellows Program’s 2021-2022 cohort at the New Leadership Academy Summer Institute.

During the Summer Institute, NLA Fellows learned from local and national presenters and facilitators in the areas of public policy, higher education, leadership, transcultural communication, career development and leading for equity, diversity and inclusion. NLA’s updated curriculum for the 2022 cohort was made possible by contributions from New Leadership Academy alumni, facilitators, presenters and founding members and instructional design support from University Connected Learning at the University of Utah.

Sessions were designed to share the NLA tools for leaders, then provide NLA Fellows the time to practice using these tools in their collective analysis of case studies throughout the week. Fellows were also guided by facilitators—experienced senior leaders in higher education and equity, diversity and inclusion—in presenting case clinics from their own experiences and receiving feedback from their cohort members.

The NLA Summer Institute keynote speaker, President Mary Dana Hinton of Hollins University, was the highlight of the week. President Hinton shared her personal story and her own evolution as a leader through her powerful and inspiring message, urging Fellows to lead with a sense of purpose and align their work to their own “mission-driven leadership.”

The week closed with a profound pinning ceremony, where Fellows reflected upon their kuleana or gift, as guided by Kevin John Fong of the Kahakulei Institute and renewed their commitment to leading for equity. The NLA Fellows then were welcomed into the NLA alumni community, which now totals over 160 leaders from across the nation and Canada.