Looking Back and Looking Forward: A Review of the ACE Fellows Program


​​ACE’s Center for Policy Research and Strategy and ACE Leadership released a report sharing select findings from a comprehensive review of the Council’s signature leadership development program. According to the report, professional leadership development needs to prepare individuals to operate from a positional and collective approach that benefits the individual, institutions, and ultimately the enterprise.

Since its inception in 1965, the ACE Fellows Program has strengthened institutions and leadership in American higher education by identifying and preparing nearly 1,900 faculty, staff and administrators for senior positions in college and university leadership through its distinctive and intensive nominator-driven, cohort-based mentorship model. Fellows are nominated from the ranks of faculty, academic affairs leadership, campus or system leadership, and other executive campus positions. 

Findings in this report are drawn from Program stakeholder survey and interview data, affirming the value of the Program itself: 98 percent of Fellows agreed that the Program prepared them for a senior leadership position, and over 85 percent of stakeholders surveyed agreed that the Program is worth the cost. In addition, the report recommends that institutions promote internal succession planning and the strategic deployment of human resources.