Professional Learning Summits at Penn GSE are multi-day events that deliver experiential learning opportunities focused on teaching, learning, and leadership development.

What Sets Us Apart

  Connect and network with fellow educators and leaders
  Learn from world-class experts and faculty
 Engage in experiential and transformative learning activities

About the Program

Professional Learning Summits are highly experiential and engaging professional development experiences. During your time with us on campus, you will take part in networking opportunities, seminars and workshops led by Penn faculty and experts, connect and collaborate with past, current, and future certificate program participants, and get energized to teach and lead with passion, purpose, and skill.

Certificate:Penn GSE Certificate of Participation

Designed for mid-level and senior leaders in:

  • K-12 schools/districts
  • Higher Education
  • Non-profit 
  • Private/Corporate Learning & Development 
  • Human Resources
  • On-campus

Communication for the Modern Leader

April 19-20, 2024

Join us for a two-day, on-campus summit to experience a comprehensive program designed to empower leaders with the skills and insights needed to communicate effectively, foster collaboration, and inspire high-performing teams. This program is tailored to help you align your communication approach with your unique leadership style, ensuring authenticity and impact.

Learning Goals:

  • Develop a personalized communication plan that aligns with your leadership style
  • Develop enhanced interpersonal communication skills
  • Practice active listening techniques to better understand others and respond empathetically
  • Identify methods to communicate effectively in culturally sensitive ways when communicating with diverse/global teams 
  • Identify ways to provide constructive feedback and coaching to help team members grow and succeed.
  • Implement storytelling as a powerful tool for conveying vision and motivating teams.
  • Gain insights into strategies for preventing conflicts before they arise
  • Learn how to foster strong communication within virtual teams, enhancing productivity and morale
  • Review techniques to influence and persuade others positively
  • Develop awareness around nonverbal cues and body language

Summit Enrollment and Cost:

Add-on for a current learner in a Fall '23 or Spring '24 program$500
Open Registration$1,300
Previous CPL Learners, Penn GSE Alumni & Penn Employees $1,040




Your registration includes a networking reception with hor devours and beverages on Friday, April 19, and a continental breakfast and lunch on Saturday, April 20. 


Summit Agenda

Join us for an in-person, hands-on learning experience on campus at Penn GSE, located at 3700 Walnut Street, Philadelphia. 

Friday, April 19
1:30-2:00 p.m. Check-in 
2:00-5:00 p.m.Communicating Through Changing Times - From pioneering novel initiatives to responding to crises, today’s leaders are under more pressure than ever before to communicate complex messages to diverse arrays of stakeholders. Often, these messages involve persuading your organizations to embrace change or address big problems in your field or industry, taking teams and organizations into new and unexplored territory. In this session, we’ll explore a set of tools and strategies to help leaders clearly and confidently communicate change. By drawing upon advanced models and frameworks for communication as well as opportunities for hands-on practice, learners will hone their ability to persuasively communicate a clear vision for change within their organization or field/industry.


Presenter: Antionnette McDermott

5:00-6:00 p.m.Networking Reception 
Saturday, April 20
8:30 - 9:00 a.m. Registration, coffee, and networking
9:00 a.m. - noon

Authentic Leadership: Fostering Empathy and Upholding Accountability - In a world where leadership demands flexibility, empathy, and resilience, this session offers a roadmap for leaders seeking to enhance their effectiveness through the power of empathetic communication and accountability. Dive into practical strategies that blend emotional intelligence with leadership responsibilities, creating an environment where empathy and accountability coexist to foster a culture of trust and mutual respect. Participants will explore innovative approaches to connect genuinely with their direct reports, driving engagement and productivity while maintaining a clear vision and accountability. This session is designed for leaders who aspire to transform their leadership style into one that is both authentically human and rigorously effective, ensuring a thriving and supportive workplace environment.

Presenter: Emma Grigore 

Noon - 1:30 p.m. Lunch Break (optional campus tour)
1:30 - 4:30 p.m.

Unveiling Effective Communication 

In this session, we delve into the intricacies of communication, dissecting its complexities across gender lines and social identities. Participants will critique artifacts from various leaders to uncover the strengths and challenges inherent in their communication approaches. Through insightful analysis and engaging discussions, we'll examine how social nuances influence communication strategies, perceptions, outcomes, and organizational cultures.

Presenter: Dr. Cheryl Logan

4:30 - 5:30 p.m. Reflection and closing

Our Faculty

Penn GSE Faculty Emma Grigore
Head of Human Resources, Wharton
M.L., Penn Carey Law
Penn GSE Faculty Cheryl J. Logan
Executive Director McGraw Center for Educational Leadership
Ed.D., University of Pennsylvania
Penn GSE Faculty Antionnette McDermott
Director of Graduate Program, Wharton Communication Program

Program Leadership

Alana Elkins, Ed.D.
Senior Associate Director & Portfolio Manager