Professional Development Opportunities

Urban Affairs Association Conference > Professional Development Opportunities

Details about the professional development opportunities offered at the Urban Affairs Association Conference are provided below. Additional opportunities & details will be added as the conference planning is finalized.

Wednesday, April 26, 2023

8:30-10:30amGraduate Student Workshop: The Dissertation (Selected Applicants Only)

WHO CAN ATTEND: Selected applicants only; must be registered for the conference
COST:  No additional cost; attendees must apply & be accepted to attend the session

HOW TO APPLY:  The application form will be posted on or before November 22, 2022.

Submit an Application

GENERAL OUTLINE:

  • Part I: Introductions
  • Part II: What is a dissertation and what is the structure and process of writing a dissertation
  • Part III: Developing the core pieces of the dissertation (The nuts & bolts) – Literature review, methodology, writing & analysis.
  • Part IV: Fundraising and Publishing
  • Part V: Committee and Mentoring
  • Part VI: Workshop Evaluation

11:00am-1:00pmGraduate Student Workshop: Getting a Job (selected applicants only)

WHO CAN ATTEND: Selected applicants only; must be registered for the conference
COST:  No additional cost; attendees must apply & be accepted to attend the session

HOW TO APPLY: The application form will be posted on or before November 22, 2022.

Submit an Application

GENERAL OUTLINE:

  • Part I: Introductions
  • Part II: Marketing your skillset & finding a job
  • Part III: Application process, interview process and post-interview
  • Part IV: Non-academic and non-traditional
  • Part V: Managing stress, time and expectations
  • Part VI: Workshop Evaluation

1:00-4:00pmPublishing for Early Career Professionals: Basics (all attendees welcome)

WHO CAN ATTEND:  Anyone

DESCRIPTION:

This panel focuses on writing and publishing. As a multidisciplinary field, scholarship in urban affairs is covers wide variety of topics, publishing outlets are numerous. This panel brings together a group of scholars to discuss best practices for writing and publishing. Panelists will draw on their own experiences as well as their role as editors, reviewers, and writers. There will be ample opportunity for questions and discussion.

9:30am-3:30pmTeaching Academy Workshop: Understanding by Design (selected applicants only)

WHO CAN ATTEND: Selected applicants only; must be registered for the conference
COST:  No additional cost; attendees must apply & be accepted to attend the session

HOW TO APPLY: The application form will be posted on or before November 22, 2022.

Submit an Application

Workshop Coordinator: Dr. José W. Meléndez, University of Oregon, Eugene

Facilitators:

  • Lauren W. Forbes, Ph.D., University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati
  • Sabina Deitrick, Ph.D.,  University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburg
  • José W. Meléndez, Ph.D., University of Oregon, Eugene

Learning Objectives

  • Describe and differentiate between key concepts and theories of backwards design
  • Explain the reasoning behind strategies to establish a constructive learning environment 
  • Identify theory based approaches to connecting classroom content to practice
  • Name elements of a hidden curriculum and define how it relates to learning objectives and evaluations

The increasing focus on teaching effectiveness has placed greater expectations on professors to not only be creative about how they teach, but also to be able to articulate the rationale behind their teaching. There is an integral relation between pedagogy/teaching and how students learn. When we teach, we are constantly reacting to how learners are responding to content and how it is presented. This means instructors are constantly negotiating between their intended instruction and the actual process that unfolds with students. Thus, it is essential to ensure that little is left to chance in the classroom. As such, the more professors think ahead about how they design their learning interactions, the more likely these specific learning interactions will take place. 

This workshop will focus on helping instructors connect teaching practices to theory. Grounding our teaching practices in theory can help us further understand what is working and what needs adjusting. One such planning framework that connects practice to theory is Understanding by Design (UbD). UbD is a “backwards” design process that helps instructors hone in on what they want their students to learn and then create a road map to achieve those goals. The term “backwards” is used because it focuses on what we want our students to learn by the end of the semester and works backwards to map put how to do so. Although highly regarded in education and learning sciences fields, this framework is not widely known by faculty teaching in other fields in higher education. This half-day professional development workshop will introduce professors to the backwards design process to help them plan their courses more effectively, with a focus on learning objective as the driving force behind what instructors choose to do in their classrooms. Instructors will also be introduced to related instructional foci such as: Deconstructing and reconstructing a student-centric class syllabus, strategies to establish a constructive learning environment, and approaches to connecting classroom content to practice. Lastly, professors will review the role of rubrics both as guidelines for themselves and their students to evaluate student work and the course.  

Participants are asked to bring in sample syllabi to both share and to workshop. This professional development workshop will involve an initial overview of the educational and learning theories and concepts, followed by sharing and reviewing of sample syllabi for key components and opportunities for improvement. Small group break out sessions will provide opportunities for faculty to apply the concepts and materials from the workshop to their own syllabi. The workshop will end with a model activity professors can use in their courses for reviewing the hidden curriculum inherent in all teaching that can help students more effectively evaluate courses.

9:30am-3:30pmTeaching Academy Workshop: Teaching 1st Generation College Students (selected applicants only)

WHO CAN ATTEND: Selected applicants only; must be registered for the conference
COST:  No additional cost; attendees must apply & be accepted to attend the session

HOW TO APPLY: The application form will be posted on or before November 22, 2022.

Submit an Application

Workshop Coordinator: Dr. José W. Meléndez, University of Oregon, Eugene

Facilitators: 

  • Colby King, Ph.D., University of South Carolina, Upstate
  • José W. Meléndez, Ph.D., University of Oregon, Eugene
  • Rubia R. Valente, Ph.D., Baruch College, City University of New York
  • Leanne Kang, Ph.D., Grand Valley State University, Grand Rapids

Learning Objectives

  • Describe and asses research and concepts that delve into the challenges and opportunities faced by first generation students 
  • Developing an asset rather than deficit based approach to teaching first generation students.
  • Describe, adapt, and practice evidence based approaches and strategies for addressing challenges and supporting success of first generation students
  • Create a needs assessment of instructor’s and their University needs and resources for working with first generation students

The power and value of hidden curriculum

Given how most classrooms are made up of a milieu of socio-economic backgrounds of students, challenges and opportunities will arise. As such, instructors need to be adept at identifying these as opportunities for difficult but potentially transformative learning experiences. Thus, this workshop will aim to both identify, problematize, and re-imagine our teaching practices and learning expectations with the goal to equip participating instructors with research based concepts, techniques, and practices to take with them to support 1st generation students in their classrooms. 1st generation students are undergraduates who come from homes where neither parent attended college. As such, 1st generation students face various barriers (academically, socially, and psychologically) to ensuring they successfully graduate. 

As such, this workshop will be an opportunity for instructors to pick up skills and new knowledge to support the learning trajectory of 1st generation students, while also to be able to articulate the rationale behind their teaching. There is an integral relation between pedagogy/teaching and how students learn. When we teach, we are constantly reacting to how learners are responding to content and its presentation. Teachers trained and conditioned to use traditional modes of pedagogy must consider new realities of a changing classroom with students coming from cultures and backgrounds with ways of being and knowing that may not align with existing norms and values in the academy.

This means instructors are constantly negotiating between their intended instruction and the actual process that unfolds with students. This process can be especially complex with first generation college students who are an increasingly large percentage of colleges’ student body, and also represent a larger proportion of other underrepresented identities. This diversity enlivens classrooms but also challenges many of the assumed norms and expectations instructors have for and about students. This requires instructors to reassess their expectations, while articulating norms and expectations up front and often, and reassess what else is taken for granted that may make a difference for 1st generation students to succeed in their classrooms and college at large. 

This professional development workshop will involve an initial overview of the educational and learning research regarding 1st generation students, followed by taking participants through sample techniques used for supporting this student population. This will include how Covid-19 impacted 1st generations students and remaining repercussions for pedagogy. Participants are asked to bring in sample syllabi to both share and to workshop. Small group break out sessions will provide opportunities for faculty to apply the concepts and materials from the workshop to their own syllabi. The workshop will end with instructors taking a needs assessment that identifies the resources they have at their university for working with 1st generation students and other venues for gaps identified. 

[Time TBD]Workshop: Economic Inclusion (Sponsored by The Kauffman Foundation)

More details available soon.

Thursday, April 27, 2023

8:15-9:00amBreakfast Roundtable: Career-related topic TBD (Breakfast Ticket Required)

More details available soon.

8:15-9:00amBreakfast Roundtable: Publishing-related topic TBD (Breakfast Ticket Required)

More details available soon.

12:15-1:00pmSpeed Mentoring for Graduate Students (selected applicants only)

WHO CAN ATTEND: Selected applicants only
COST:  No additional cost; attendees must apply & be accepted to attend the session

HOW TO APPLY: The application form will be posted on or before November 15, 2022.

DESCRIPTION: Interested in having a one-on-one discussion about a career-related issue? Mid-career and senior scholars will serve as volunteer career mentors to graduate students who apply and are accepted to attend this special session. Apply today!

12:15-1:00pmTeaching for Career Building (All Attendees Welcome)

More details available soon.

12:15-1:00pmPublishing Fellows Informational Meeting (Selected Applicants Only)

WHO CAN ATTEND:  Early career scholars (e.g. Masters students, Doctoral students, untenured assistant professors) who are registered for the 2023 UAA Conference.
COST:  No additional cost; attendees must apply & be accepted to attend the session

HOW TO APPLY: The application form will be posted on or before November 15, 2022.


DESCRIPTION:

The Journal of Urban Affairs (JUA) Scholar Development Editors (SDEs) will host the second year of the JUA Publishing Fellows Program from August 2023 to May 2024. The goal of the program is to provide support and professional development opportunities in publishing to early career scholars.

The JUA Publishing Fellows Program is for early career scholars (e.g. Masters students, Doctoral students, untenured assistant professors). The program will include writing and publication workshops, as well as individual and group opportunities for faculty feedback on participants’ individual manuscripts.

Selected participants will be required to submit a 2 – 3 page paper outline by March 2024 with the goal of completing a full version of the manuscript ready for submission to a peer-reviewed journal by the completion of the program year (May 2024).

2:30-4:30pmProfessional Opportunities Beyond the Academy

More details available soon.

[Time TBD]Best Strategies and Practices 1: The Tenure Review Process (All Attendees Welcome)

More details available soon.

Friday, April 28, 2023

8:15-9:00amBreakfast Roundtable: Career-related topic TBD (Breakfast Ticket Required)

More details available soon.

8:15-9:00amBreakfast Roundtable: Publishing-related topic TBD (Breakfast Ticket Required)

More details available soon.

12:15-1:00pmFinding a Work-Life Balance (All Attendees Welcome)

More details available soon.

[Time TBD]Teaching for Applied Fields & Community Engagement

More details available soon.

[Time TBD]Best Strategies and Practices 2: Publishing and Tenure

More details available soon