The application window for the 2024 ALI is now closed.
page to learn more about how to apply to future
The Wheelhouse Advancing Leaders Institute (ALI) is an annual
professional growth and networking experience that develops and
supports a diverse new generation of equity-focused California
community college leaders who are nimble, innovative, highly
networked, data-driven, and representative of students they will
serve. The ALI is designed to support and diversify a critical
pipeline of community college presidents and chancellors for
California, and extends opportunities for historically
underrepresented college leader candidates to explore and prepare
for the CEO-ship.
The 2023 ALI cohort includes 32 cabinet-level California
community college administrators representing 32 colleges and
districts that collectively serve three-quarters of a million
students at colleges and districts in urban, suburban and rural
communities statewide. Their current roles include vice
presidents, vice chancellors, associate vice chancellors as well
as an interim chancellor and acting president. Their spheres of
responsibility range from instruction to student services
to administrative services. Read the press release about the
Two In-Person Convenings
The ALI is designed to support aspiring community college CEOs as
they develop adaptive leadership capacity, fluency in
facilitating conversations and decisions that improve racial
equity and social justice, expertise in strategic communications,
and acumen in using data and research to inform good decisions.
Mastery of these skills is critical preparation for ascendancy as
a CEO. We pay particular attention to capacities necessary
for success in California.
The Advancing Leaders Institute consists of 7-8 days of
face-to-face learning and networking interspersed with several
remote learning sessions, including:
A 4-day foundational convening in the summer.
A 3 or 4-day convening in the fall.
Several short, intentional remote learning sessions to build
cohort connections and sustain learning trajectories both before
and in between the onsite sessions.
Group coaching opportunities for growth in particular
We tap real-time community college challenges and
innovations to develop teaching cases for lively, interactive
seminars. The table is set for robust examination of leadership
theory, strategic communications, leading for equity and
institutional change. Institute themes are tailored to community
college senior leadership needs and the current California
Additional curricular components include:
Self-assessment and mentorship: Taking
stock of strengths and challenges through comprehensive
self-assessment developed by Wheelhouse for future community
college leaders. Mentoring and coaching will guide reflection and
Communicating vision: Crafting and effectively
communicating a vision for your institution—a key capacity for
any aspiring CEO.
Development of policy savvy and political
currency: Real-time learning on California policy
developments in motion and guidance on successful engagement in
the policy arena.
Board and community dynamics: Communicating with
and managing the relationship with elected boards.
Positioning for the next move: Exploration of
the right timing for ascendancy, examining “fit” between
candidates and colleges, the importance of success in the first
presidency, and how to position CVs and other collateral to
qualify for the interview round.
The ALI Funders
Wheelhouse is grateful to the California Community College
Chancellor’s Office and ECMC Foundation for their generous
support of the Advancing Leaders Institute. Because of our
generous funders, Wheelhouse is able to cover tuition through
scholarship for the 2024 ALI Cohort 2.