"Doing more with less." It's a familiar saying for folks who work in higher education. One casualty of budget reductions has been funding lines for professional development. Some of my colleagues have been restricted from traveling out of state for conferences and the overall climate of professional development within student affairs isn't very positive.
On a recent episode of Student Affairs Live, Jeff Jackson and I talked about the concept of "#AltProDev" (while the hashtag hasn't taken off yet, one can hope...). We shared our thoughts about how folks who are constrained by their budgets could still effectively engage in professional development opportunities.
One of the main ideas that came out of our conversation was the idea that "time" could be given as an alternative to traditional development funds if folks cannot leave their campus to attend events. This happens quite a bit in the corporate world. How many student affairs supervisors provide space for #altprodev programs at their school? Allowing for #altprodev time for folks who cannot travel and/or afford to attend outside events would create potentially tremendous occasions for professional learning. Professionals could create knowledge sessions and offer space for collaborative, cross-campus connection-making.
Student Affairs departments often have experts in a variety of areas working in numerous functional areas. If people are given "time," just think about the transformative power that can take place when people are given space to be creative.
Give people time to create, innovate, and share. The results will be powerful and it will have the added benefit of increasing morale.
How do you provide time for #altprodev at your campus?
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