Among his many commencement addresses this spring, Interim Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor Ken Burtis spoke to 24 staff members who comprised the 2016-17 class of Administrative Officers for the Future, or AOFTF.
This annual program, in its fourth year, cultivates a diverse pool of highly talented and highly motivated staff members from the Davis and Sacramento campuses, who are interested in pursuing administrative officer positions.
Based on a competency model developed specifically for chief administrative officers at UC Davis, the seven-month program is intended to prepare employees to be competitive for future openings at UC Davis.
“AOFTF ensures our talented individuals are recognized and challenged,” said Kelly Crabtree, training program manager. “We help those with strong potential advance, and foster a stronger sense of commitment to one’s own department and to UC Davis.”
Of the 29 graduating participants from the first class of 2014, 69 percent have advanced while more than 30 percent of graduates from both the class of 2015 and 2016 have advanced as well.
Sometimes, advancement comes faster than one might know it. For example, Kyle Summers, of the 2016-17 class, moved to a new position as finance services head for the UC Davis Library on May 22, the Monday following graduation.
“I am embarking on a new supervisory role,” Summers said. “This program empowered me to take initiative to better myself. I intend to take everything I learned here and apply it to my new position.”
While Summers’ new position was not a direct result of his graduation from AOFTF, the program provides a wide array of opportunities for personal and professional growth within one’s current position.
“Advancement is a good thing, but it’s not the only goal,” said Carina Celesia Moore, director of Human Resources’ Talent Management and Development Center of Expertise. The program also aims to develop skills, foster UC Davis community, and motivate staff and employees to reach their fullest potential.
“AOFTF provided me my first opportunity to take the lead role in a project on campus and helped me tackle my fear of public speaking,” said Nicholle Heffern, analyst for the UC Davis Medical Center, “Completing this program gave me the validation that I can do it.”
After completing the rigorous application process, participants complete a variety of activities including assessments, classroom instruction, panel presentations, individual development planning, reflective writing, and a 40-hour group project.
In assigned three-person teams, participants are given a specific problem to address — problems submitted by department heads within the university. These projects are relevant to the program competencies and require assistance resolving a significant problem or leveraging a potential opportunity at UC Davis. Participants must provide well-researched and realistic solutions in project reports and group presentations.
AOFTF graduates May 2017
Laila Adora, Greg Anderson, Nick Barbulesco, Jamie Brannon, Stacey Brezing, Melissa Brown, Lisa Carvajal, Mark Chatman, Kay Cole, Andrea Elliott, Andenet Emiru, Tom Harper, Brian Hayes, Nicholle Heffern, Megan Kennedy, Shaun Lane, Maria Marois, Leslie Nemeth, Megan Rott, Clyve Soriano, Kyle Summers, David Tanguay, Stephanie Thompson and Yuliya Yarova-Yarovaya.