PreDoctoral Leadership Development Academy - Office of Organizational Leadership Skip to main content

The PreDoctoral Leadership Development Academy (PLDA), is a one year program designed to provide doctoral students from a broad array of academic disciplines with the supplemental knowledge and skills needed for academic and administrative leadership roles. Since the program’s inception in 2010, nearly 200 doctoral students representing over 60 academic departments have participated in the program.

Through participation in this collaborative learning program, the PLDA Fellows will have an opportunity to develop a deeper understanding of the challenges and issues facing higher education, enhance their leadership competencies, and strengthen their network of colleagues from across Rutgers who demonstrate a shared interest in leadership development.

The PLDA program was created to provide a complement to discipline-based study by offering experiential and classroom opportunities that emphasize leadership style and strategy, collaborative decision-making, planning and organizational assessment, communication with internal and external constituencies, and other knowledge and skill-sets important to informal and formal leadership and professional advancement.

The components of PLDA include both didactic and experiential elements that, together, provide fundamental knowledge of higher education from historical and contemporary perspectives. It also provides an overview of the array of problems and opportunities confronting the academy and other large institutions today, and examines approaches and competencies required of leaders to meaningfully address these challenges.

PLDA is offered by the Rutgers Office of Organizational Leadership which is part of the Office of the Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs. Co-sponsored by the graduate school deans from the four Chancellor-led units, PLDA is open to any Rutgers University doctoral student. The program will consist of both in-person and virtual sessions on most Friday mornings from 9:00 to 11:00 a.m. throughout the Fall and Spring semesters.

Students who wish to be considered for participation in the program will need to be nominated by a program director, department chair, dean, or vice-president.

Fellows must be able to attend all of the virtual and in-person classes on Fridays from 9:00 am – 11:00 am.

Fellows’ completion of the program will be recognized on their academic transcripts.

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