The Executive Doctorate in Higher Education Management provides a leadership curriculum designed especially for senior-level higher education leaders through an innovative delivery format. A committed faculty of scholars and practitioners lead a cohort of college executives who complete a Doctor of Education degree in just two intense years – without career interruption. The program provides all books, meals, and hotel accommodations during courses that meet on the Penn campus for approximately one week each summer and one weekend per month during two academic years.
The Executive Doctorate trains an emerging generation of top higher education leaders – from campuses, government, and affiliated organizations – to manage resources strategically, leverage evidence-based decision-making, create entrepreneurial opportunities, challenge practices critically, and conquer the dynamics of complex organizations. The program redefines academic inquiry: we focus on using sound analytic principles to tackle relevant, practical questions of strategy for governing broad segments of the higher education enterprise.
Our alumni universally identify our cohort-based pedagogical model as the program’s core strength. Each class of approximately two dozen senior managers and executives represent higher education’s diversity in all its forms – demographic, professional, and institutional – and actively contribute to a community of learners. The cohort is lead by a committed faculty of nationally renowned higher education scholars who dedicate themselves to both teaching and chairing dissertations, often reporting that their work with Executive Doctorate students is one of the most rewarding professional experiences of their careers.
For many senior higher education leaders, professional and personal commitments and goals preclude stepping out of the workforce for three to five years to enroll in a traditional doctoral program.As well, many part-time Ed.D. programs drag on for years, with disappointing completion rates. The innovative format of the Executive Doctorate provides an alternative solution, allowing students (who must already hold a master’s degree) to maintain their current jobs while working for a tightly structured two-year curriculum that includes the completion of a scholarly dissertation in addition to coursework.With the support of a dedicated faculty and staff and the encouragement of their classmates, over 92% complete the program on-time.
Most Executive Doctorate students are seeking career advancement that would be facilitated by a terminal degree or advanced study in the field of higher education management.Our alumni maintain that the program provided unparalleled preparation for senior executive positions, supplying them with dynamic tools for surmounting campus-wide challenges. Search firms and professional networks routinely recruit our alumni. Moreover, while the educational experience is rewarding in and of itself, the community continues beyond the two years, through an engaged alumni network and access to professional associates in a variety of institutions across the country.