Pratt Community College offers a wide variety of classes for its students. Now it’s considering joining a Leadership Institute for administrators and instructors that would give them the skills needed to apply for a position as a college president or vice president.

Based on the Washington Executive Leadership Academy that was developed for Washington state community and technical colleges, the Kansas Association of Community College Trustees developed the Leadership Institute for the people in Kansas who desire to become college presidents or vice-presidents, said PCC President Michael Calvert.

Deans, middle managers, vice presidents, directors and faculty members with a desire to become a president or vice-president will have an opportunity to for that advancement through Leadership Institute. Some graduate credit may also be available.

Cost for the program would come out of KACCT fees and would vary for each college. The PCC cost to participate would be just over $1,000, Calvert said.

Instituted in Washington in 2000, WELA has had a noticeable impact on that state.

The proposed Leadership Institute is being presented to the boards of trustees of all 19 Kansas community colleges.

“I would love to take advantage of this program,” Calvert said. “A leadership institute that builds future community college leaders is enticing.”

Calvert presented the idea to the Pratt Community College Board of Trustees at their regular monthly meeting and received a positive response from the Board to continue pursuing the program with the other Kansas community colleges.

Leadership Institute is a “grow your own” program that will provide the necessary courses to keep talented people informed on Kansas’ issues and increase the number of potential college presidents and vice-presidents from a Kansas system.

When colleges were seeking candidates for president and vice-president, Kansas had a low supply on hand that could fill those positions. This program is designed to increase the number of candidates from Kansas, Calvert said.

The traditional method to work toward a top level position would be to attend a university and work towards a doctorate degree.

Having this program available for administrators will give them access to information and training that will improve their chances when seeking a president or vice-president position.

“If this had been available to me when I was a dean I sure would have taken advantage of the program,” said Calvert who is in his first year as president of Pratt Community College.

The courses have to be worked out before a final proposal goes before all the community colleges.

The courses would be based out of Leadership Institute in Wichita and feature courses on-line and some at locations, possibly PCC, throughout the state.

“My gut feeling is it will pass enough colleges,” Calvert said.