Lead for transformative change.

Identify the leadership actions that will unlock instructional improvement in your educator-preparation program.

Impact Academy is a yearlong fellowship that builds the capacity of deans of educator-preparation programs to lead and improve equity.

Here, we help you answer the big questions. While other leadership programs focus on nuts-and-bolts training for budgeting or accreditation, Impact Academy fellows define a strategy for instructional improvement grounded in equity. Through collaborative learning sessions, case studies, and personalized coaching, you’ll explore topics such as:

This picture depicts headshots of four deans.

How can I lead my faculty through a deep exploration of cultural responsiveness in our program? What data do we need to understand if our teacher-candidates are able to meet the needs of culturally diverse learners? See how Dr. Cheryl Holcomb-McCoy addressed these questions at American University.


How can I lead the School of Education through an innovation initiative, redesigning our approach to meet 21st-century challenges? How do I get stakeholders on board with a new vision of teacher preparation that incorporates more field experiences, virtual licensure, and post-graduation mentorship? Learn how Dr. Nancy Marchand-Martella led such changes at Purdue University.


How do I guide faculty to identify common shared values? How can I show vulnerability, so that others feel safe to do the same? See how Dr. Trent Gould, Dean of the College of Education and Human Sciences at The University of Southern Mississippi, explored these questions.


How do I guide my team to consider questions of diversity, equity, and inclusion, and embed these considerations into every course of the educator-preparation program? Find out how Dr. Kathlene Campbell, Dean of the School of Education at the University of St. Thomas, is exploring these questions during the fellowship.



This isn’t just a resume builder— it’s an opportunity for genuine growth. You’ll explore the mindsets and beliefs that underlie your leadership, identifying and challenging old assumptions. The curriculum consists of leadership case studies of current deans as well as activities that link leadership theory and practice.

Throughout the year, you’ll be mentored by a veteran dean, benefiting from regular virtual coaching sessions to help you conceptualize and implement transformative change. Along the way, you’ll build a network of peers firmly committed to creating equitable outcomes for future teachers and their students. Don’t miss out on this unique opportunity!

The application for the 2023 Fellowship is not yet live. In the meantime, you can fill out the form below to request more information, and we’ll be in touch!


2022 Fellowship Details

  • Three-day session in Summer 2022
  • Monthly virtual learning sessions (September – June)
  • One-day session in July 2023
  • Four one-on-one coaching sessions with a veteran dean spread over the fellowship year

The fee for Impact Academy is $5,495 and includes all materials, learning sessions, and at least four one-on-one coaching sessions. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, we aim to provide financial assistance to all who request it. Full or partial support is available.

Building a diverse cohort

Who should apply? You should apply if the following describes you:

  • You are dean of a school of education or educator-preparation program
  • You have a strong interest in your own growth and the growth of those you lead
  • You value learning alongside others
  • You are committed to ensuring more equitable outcomes for teacher-candidates and the students they serve
  • You can commit to participating in all Impact Academy activities over the academic year

Deans for Impact is committed to increasing the diversity of the fellowship cohort and drawing on that diversity to improve the richness of the learning experience for fellows. We are particularly interested in increasing the racial diversity of fellows and increasing the number of leaders of Minority-Serving Institutions within the cohort.


Meet past fellows

Deans for Impact has supported 95 educator-preparation leaders over the past six years. Click here to learn more about the fellows!

Hear from Dr. Sharen Cypress, Dean of the College of Education and Behavioral Sciences at Freed-Hardeman University, about how Impact Academy equipped her with tools to understand the educational landscape in her area and work to increase equity.

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