Academic journal article Journal of Leadership Studies

Leadership Preparation: Designing and Planning for Interprofessional Doctoral Education and Practice

Academic journal article Journal of Leadership Studies

Leadership Preparation: Designing and Planning for Interprofessional Doctoral Education and Practice

Article excerpt

Executive Summary

New directions in the study of leadership preparation are transforming the practices and theories about leaders, especially those who serve in educational and human services organizations (Clark & Clark, 1996; Corrigan, 1998; Dunlap & Schmuck, 1995; Leithwood, Begley, & Cousins, 1992, et al.). In spite of these new directions, few programs have given consideration to the idea of interprofessional leadership and the skills, knowledge, and experiences needed to support the changing roles and relationships that have come to define leadership practice (Browning, 1987; Cunningham, 1990; Corrigan, 1994; Lawson & Hooper-Briar, 1997; Murphy, 1992; et al.). This article explores how one university has reshaped their doctoral leadership program in an effort to build interagency collaboration among professionals from public education, higher education, human services agencies, and health care organizations. A follow-up study of current students and graduates from the program provides insight into how these professionals have come to understand interprofessional leadership, the benefits and challenges for participating in an interprofessional doctoral program, and the extent to which the program has helped them to engage in interprofessional leadership in their own practices.

Introduction

New directions in the study of leadership preparation are transforming the practices and theories about leaders, especially those who serve in educational and human services agencies, (Clark & Clark, 1996; Corigan, 1998; Corrigan & Udas, 1994; Dunlap & Schmuck, 1995; Dunn, V. B. & Janata, M. M., 1987; Houle, Cyphert, & Boggs, 1987; Lambert, Walker, Zimmerman, Cooper, Lambert, Gardner, & Slack, 1995; Leithwood, Begley, & Cousins, 1992; Milstein, 1995; Murphy, 1992). Much of the literature about leadership training has focused on leaders' traits, styles, and behaviors, with more recent attention being given to how leaders think and how they apply their thinking to the complex social environments and the interpersonal human dynamics that define educational and human services organizations (Gardner, 1995; Hallinger, Leithwood, & Murphy, 1993; Heifetz, 1994; Hoy & Tarter, 1995; Leithwood, Begley, & Cousins, 1992; Lipman-Blumen, 1996; Senge, 1990; Sergiovanni, 1992; Wheatley, 1992).

In spite of these new directions in how we both think about and plan for leadership preparation, few programs have given consideration to the idea of interprofessional leadership and the skills, knowledge, and experiences needed to support the changing roles and responsibilities that have come to define interprofessional practice (Browning, 1987; Cunningham, 1990; Corrigan, 1994; Corrigan & Udas, 1994; Lawson & Hooper-Briar, 1997; Searcy & Baldwin, 1996). We are beginning to realize that educational and human service leaders face a number of serious challenges and the need for collaboration among the many professionals who serve in educational and human service agencies that serve young people has never been greater (Corrigan & Udas, 1994).

Educational and human services leaders are faced with a number of challenges in a world that is changing rapidly, among them historical an ongoing conflicts between schools and the wider community, advancing instructional technologies institutional decay (Cunningham, 1990), increased diversity among the student body, cries for equity, and a "plethora of state-level mandates and accountability measures" (Ericson & Marlow, 1996, p. 122). In addition, our institutions have been called upon to respond to the increasingly dire circumstances surrounding our children and young adolescents who find themselves living in families that are struggling to overcome "poverty, substance abuse, limited health care, and often inadequate housing" (Wang, Haertel, & Walberg, 1995, p-243). More recently, increasing violence and threats of violence in neighborhood schools have called for specific programs and activities to address this assault, often leading to symptomatic responses such as surveillance equipment, metal detectors, and other aggressive protective actions (Johnson & Johnson, 1995). …

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