MVCC, Leadership Mohawk Valley to create Center for Leadership Excellence

Published Apr 15, 2018 at 9:00am

Mohawk Valley Community College and Leadership Mohawk Valley will form a partnership after being awarded a four-year $151,900 grant from the Community Foundation of Herkimer and Oneida Counties to create an innovative and high-impact Center for Leadership Excellence to address the region’s need for effective, equipped and engaged community leaders.

Speakers at the conference scheduled for Friday will include MVCC President Randall J. VanWagoner; LMV Board President John Matthews; and Community Foundation President/CEO Alicia Dicks.

While existing leadership programs in the region have shown positive results, MVCC and LMV leaders said they believe there is still tremendous potential waiting to be unlocked in the community, including through women, minorities, refugees, and other groups that are underrepresented in local leadership positions.

The Center for Leadership Excellence will create one location for participants to learn skills to lead the region through new challenges and opportunities.

“This new partnership between Leadership Mohawk Valley and MVCC will allow us to maintain our 28-year-old core community leadership program, while developing new programs to serve the leadership development needs of the Mohawk Valley,” said Ann Rushlo, director of the Center for Leadership Excellence.

The project increases the impact of LMV, usually consisting of a single cohort of fewer than 40, to a robust powerhouse of leadership training that will serve more than 150 individuals annually, officials added in the announcement.

The center will align existing LMV and MVCC campus activities as cornerstone programming while laying foundations for multiple new efforts to address community needs. Within the first four years, the center will have several strands of programming in operation, and is researching offering a Leadership Fellowship Certification for individuals who complete three of those programs.

“We’re excited to partner with LMV to create this new community resource. It’s a big idea that will take all of the partners we can rally to reach our potential,” VanWagoner said.

The four existing programs include LMV’s flagship 10-month program; Youth Leadership: Girls Soaring; Leadership Academy; and Supervisors Institute. The programs will all be refined to better meet the current and emerging professional development needs of the community.

         Other programs will be added in the future, including:

*   Neighborhood Leadership: designed to develop a pool of men and women from underrepresented populations with leadership capacity for addressing on-going and emerging corporate and community issues.
 *   Board Leadership: designed to equip future and current board members with skills to grow organizations, and enhance effectiveness, decision-making, and navigation of unexpected opportunities and challenges without losing sight of strategic goals, mission, and vision of the organization.
 *   Organizational Leadership: a series of one-day sessions to provide common learning through uncommon experiences to explore disruptive innovation and vibrant organizational cultures.
 *   Intro Mohawk Valley: an invitation-only opportunity for community leaders who are new to the area to network with their peers, fast-tracking introductions and connectivity to the area.

“Every aspect of our community has the potential to benefit by growing the number of individuals who can embrace leadership roles,” Dicks said. “The Center for Leadership Excellence at MVCC creates a focal point for this leadership, strengthening the impact of existing programs, like LMV, and creating new opportunities to connect emerging and accomplished leaders to move the community forward in innovative ways.”

The grant provides resources for additional staffing capacity for the expanded program development and delivery that is intended to result in a self-sufficient business model within the next four years. MVCC will provide extensive support services for the Center for Leadership Excellence that will maximize the overall benefit of this valuable community resource.