Faculty Professional Development 

Training Sequence


In order to support our Ascender faculty and staff, we have a year-long, intensive and experiential sequence of trainings that are eligible for graduate credit from UT-Austin's Department of Educational Leadership and Policy.




The foundational institute is an intensive five-day workshop at UT-Austin that takes place in May during intersession. Participants are introduced to the program mission, model and outcomes but also come away with insight into how our classrooms differ from a traditional class environment, and thus what makes the model so effective.  Throughout the week, faculty, staff and administrators are grouped into small learning communities and spend time reading, writing and collaborating within their campus teams and with those from other colleges. In this way, teaching strategies and lesson content is modeled for instructors while staff and administrators are able to plan for the year ahead and experience the model first-hand.  The summer institute sets college teams up to be successful in the program’s initial stage by focusing on the recruitment of mentors and students, event planning, and curriculum design for the linked courses.




The 2-day Fall Seminar focuses on strengthening the college teams and giving participants the opportunity to troubleshoot issues they face at this stage in the program.  This institute takes place after site visits have occurred and is always responsive to the needs of the current cohort. Sessions are offered to address issues in retention, team dynamics, event coordination, advising and mentor engagement among other topics.  Component breakout sessions are also offered to provide useful strategies and innovative lessons for instructors in the program so that they can return to their classrooms engaged and ready to finish the semester strong.




The Spring Institute focuses on the components of the model with multiple breakout sessions for Gateway Subjects, Counseling/Advising, and Mentoring that can be used in the second semester of the program or taken over into the following year.  Not only are these components addressed but also other relevant issues such as second year recruitment, retention of the current cohort and Semester 3+ (the crucial period when students have exited out of the academic program but have not yet transferred).  This institute is both a celebration of accomplishments and a space for participants to critically reflect on the program and look ahead at how they might approach implementing the program differently in the year ahead.


All three trainings are required to complete the professional development sequence. 

Those who complete are eligible for the Leadership Fellows program



18756 Stone Oak Pkwy, Ste. 200

San Antonio, TX 78258




582 Ocean Avenue Suite A

West Haven, CT 06516




© 2022 Catch The Next Inc.

Website Help & Feedback