Broward College Offers Continued Education Training for Faculty and Staff
“Professor Silva is endlessly passionate about her job. She inspires me to be the best teacher I can be to my students through her kindness, dedication, and determination,” says Caroline Ortiz-Melo, while she and her classmates celebrate Dr. Isis Silva. “She is always searching for ways to keep our class meaningful and entertained.”
Dr. Silva is the recipient of the 2019 International Education Endowed Teaching Chair (ETC), is an associate professor of education. Her students showered her with flowers, a card, and cake during the surprise ETC announcements to recognize her for her excellence in the classroom. The feedback received from students is typical of how many of the 63,000 students at Broward College view the faculty and staff who support their academic journey.
Broward College is consistently ranked for its outstanding performance when it comes to student success. To provide such high-quality education, the College needs faculty and administrators who are not only passionate and dedicated but also up to date with current trends and technologies.
The Center for Teaching Excellence & Learning
CTEL is an institutional branch of Broward College that offers professional development to employees, that includes but is not limited to, enhanced classroom techniques, innovation, and technology.
Throughout the year, CTEL offers several training opportunities that include book clubs, workshops, nationally recognized guest speakers, and more. Participation counts towards the 36 hours of professional development that faculty must complete every three years.
For administrators, the College provides courses in leadership, management, and supervisory development. “These courses are collaborative spaces where the participants are allowed to pick the topics they want to discuss and create an atmosphere of community practice so that they can learn from each other,” explains Julia Philyaw, associate vice president for CTEL.
Continuously Finding New Initiatives for Professional Development
In addition to the year-round opportunities provided by the College, CTEL has developed special initiatives that seek to strengthen the training provided.
Every February, Broward College hosts Professional Development Day. Faculty and staff are encouraged to attend the workshops, led by both guest speakers and internal staff. This year, the initiative saw the highest engagement numbers, with over 1100 participants.
Another initiative recently implemented is the New Faculty Institute, which provides training to newly employed full-time faculty during their first semester. The training includes information sessions on policies, procedures, and resources on campus in addition to classroom techniques, technologies, and teaching strategies. It also serves as an opportunity for networking.
The internal professional development provided by CTEL complements other nationally recognized training also offered by CTEL. One such program is offered by the Association of College and University Educators (ACUE).
On Friday, April 26, 2019, Broward College hosted a pinning ceremony for 68 part-time and full-time faculty and administrators who completed the Effective Teaching Practices course from the Association of College and University Educators (ACUE).
After a successful pilot partnership in 2017 when 39 faculty completed the course, the College entered a five-year partnership with ACUE to license 500 faculty as part of efforts to improve classroom teaching and student success. The fully-online, nationally accredited program is offered over two semesters.
“With only two cohorts that have completed it, we can already see the impact this course has,” says Wendy Varela, coordinator of Faculty Professional Development at CTEL. “Seven out of nine nominees this year for Professor of the Year had completed the course, and during their presentations, they talked about ACUE and having completed the course myself, I knew they were applying techniques they had learned there.”
The College stands above the national average of ACUE completion, which stands at 81 percent, with an outstanding 91 percent completion rate.