Meet Carol Ash (PLSP-ECMC Foundation fellow)

Meet Carol Ash, dean of health, wellness & public safety at Central New Mexico Community College. Ash’s interview appears as part of a spotlight series on 2020–21 fellows in the Postsecondary Leadership Success Program at ACTE – Sponsored by ECMC Foundation.

What leadership skills do you hope to develop as part of the Postsecond­ary Leadership Success Program at ACTE – Sponsored by ECMC Foundation?

As a relatively new dean of a very large and complex organization, I would like to improve upon my team-building and mentoring skills, which are critical components of effective leadership.

The ability to coach team members through various scenarios and situations, whether negative or positive, is a highly valuable and important skill to me. It builds trust, confidence and engagement, and allows for a better flow of open communication.

How do you anticipate your participation in the program will better equip you to support career and technical edu­cation (CTE) students, particularly underserved groups, toward career success?

Through my work in the Postsecondary Leadership Success Program at ACTE – Sponsored by ECMC Foundation, I hope to gain a higher-level understanding of legislative polices that shape CTE funding both in my state and across the country. This positions me to better advocate for CTE students, particularly those in underserved groups who are often in need of specialized resources.

Funding and access are intricately tied together. Increased support in the classroom and in the community is a cornerstone element in ensuring student success. This is especially true for special population and underrepresented students in CTE programs.

In your opinion, what are the most important elements of professional development for postsecondary leaders?

Connectivity and meaningful engagement must be present in order for any professional development activity or program to be effective. It’s imperative for postsecondary leaders to feel engrossed in their professional development activities, and to experience the true human connection of learning from others’ experiences, mentorship and networking.

Learn more about the PLSP–ECMC Foundation.

The Postsecondary Leadership Success Program at ACTE – Sponsored by ECMC Foundation presents a yearlong professional development experience. The program is intended to develop the organizational leadership and management skills of postsecondary CTE professionals, with an emphasis on addressing the needs of underserved populations. Applications for the third cohort accepted Oct. 1–Dec. 15.