Trailblazers: Provost’s Mentoring Initiative for Faculty

Trailblazers will prepare tenured faculty for leadership roles in academic or professional organizations while furthering institutional diversity. The Trailblazers program will make cohort-based experiential leadership training systematically available to every academic department at Clemson and focus on the unique challenges of leadership in STEM disciplines. Trailblazers will establish mentoring programs in their departments and/or colleges.

Trailblazers will be a group composed of one representative faculty from each of Clemson’s 40 departments. Trailblazers will be selected by the TIGERS ADVANCE Executive Leadership Committee via a competitive nomination/application, screening, and selection process intended to identify those who have career aspirations to become academic leaders and who demonstrate potential to contribute to and support furthering institutional diversity. Applicants will submit curriculum vitae, a statement of interest, and a commitment letter from the applicant’s department head. Each department chair will be asked to reduce other service responsibilities of the Trailblazers to a minimum. Trailblazers will be open to all tenured faculty as Clemson needs both women and men leaders who recognize the barriers that women face and understand the importance of an inclusive campus environment for faculty success. However, to address the current deficit of women academic leaders at Clemson, at least 50 percent of the Trailblazers will be women.

Trailblazers will be led by Pacesetters, seven faculty selected from among the group of 40, each representing one of Clemson’s seven new colleges. By utilizing both internal experts on leadership development as well as external experts through our partnership with the American Council on Education (ACE), TIGERS ADVANCE will provide Trailblazers with a dynamic on-campus Leadership Development Program. Pacesetters will be provided additional opportunities, such as shadowing higher administrators at Clemson (such as Provost Jones as well as associate provosts and vice-presidents). The planned program schedule follows and selected candidates are expected to attend all events.