Past Professional Development Offerings

Past Professional Development Offerings


2019 - 2020 Workshop Series


Innovative Assessment of Doctoral Student Mentoring - Making It Happen

February 2020


Audrey Murrell, Acting Dean for the University of Pittsburgh Honors College

Joe Ayoob, Associate Professor of Computational and Systems Biology


Nathan Urban

 Vice Provost for Graduate Studies and Strategic Initiatives


Me? Bias?

December 2019

Ann Thompson, MD, MCCM

Vice Dean

School of Medicine


Mentoring Relationships that Lead to Doctoral Student Success

November 2019


Michael Sayette, Director of Graduate Studies, Psychology
Joel Brady, Program Supervisor for Graduate Student Initiative at Center for Teaching and Learning
Rachel Coombs, President, Graduate and Professional Student Government


Nathan Urban

 Vice Provost for Graduate Studies and Strategic Initiatives


Diversifying the Faculty

October 2019

Dr. Leigh Patel

Associate Dean for Equity and Justice

School of Education



2018 - 2019 Workshop Series


Overview of the Promotion and Tenure Process

April 2019

Nathan Urban, Vice Provost for Graduate Studies and Strategic Initiatives
Jacqueline Dunbar-Jacob, Dean, School of Nursing
Sanjeev Shroff, Chair, Department of Bioengineering, Swanson School of Engineering
Lara Putnam, Chair, Department of History, Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences

View the recording of the session.


Dealing with Difficult Situations

March 2019

Dianna Ploof, EdD, Pediatrics, School of Medicine
Carla Spagnoletti, MD, Medicine, School of Medicine

View the recording of the session.


Implicit Bias

February 2019

Ann E. Thompson, MD, MCCM
Vice Dean
School of Medicine

Strengthen the U, Strengthen You

January 2019

Don Bialostosky, Professor and Chair, English
Kay Brummond, Professor and Associate Dean for Faculty Affairs, Chemistry
Esa Davis, Associate Professor, Medicine
Haider Hamoudi, Professor and Vice Dean, School of Law
Frank Wilson, Assistant Professor, Sociology & Past President, University Senate
David DeJong, Executive Vice Provost

View the recording of the session.

How to Run an Effective Meeting

December 2018

Dr. Melissa McNeil
Professor of Medicine & Associate Chief, Division of General Internal Medicine
Chief, Section of Women's Health & Director, Comprehensive Women's Health Program
Program Director, BIRCWH Program & Director, Women's Health Fellowship
School of Medicine

View the recording of the session.

Implicit Bias

November 2018

Paula Davis
Assistant Vice Chancellor for Health Sciences Diversity
Office of the Senior Vice Chancellor for Health Sciences

View the recording of the session.


Recruiting Diverse Faculty

October 2018

Dr. Valerie Kinloch
Renée and Richard Goldman Dean
School of Education

View the recording of the sessionView the PowerPoint presentation from the session.


National Center for Faculty Development and Diversity (NCFDD) Panel

September 2018

Yolanda Covington-Ward, Associate Professor, Africana Studies
Cecelia Yates, Assistant Professor, Health Promotion and Development
Angela Caldwell, Assistant Professor, Occupational Therapy
Doris Rubio, Associate Vice Provost for Faculty

View the recording of the session.  The recording provides detailed information on resources and webinars offered by the NCFDD, as well as first-hand experiences with NCFDD from Pitt faculty.  More information on the NCFDD and how to claim your free Institutional Membership with the NCFDD.

2017 - 2018 Workshop Series

Developing Others

​April 2018

View the recording of this session.

Overview of the Tenure and Promotion Processes

March 2018


Using Career Coaching to Help Faculty
Advance Through the Ranks

November 2017

Doris Rubio, PhD
Associate Vice Provost for Faculty & Director, CRHC Data Center
Co-Director, Institute for Clinical Research Education
Professor of Medicine, Biostatistics, Nursing,
and Clinical and Translational Science

Career Coaching is an effective method to inspire faculty to maximize their personal and professional potential. Coaching can be used to help faculty be more productive, set goals, and achieve those goals. In this workshop, faculty focused on developing Career Coaching skills, such as asking powerful questions, so that they could implement these skills in working with their faculty.

​View the recording of this session.

Negotiation Tips, Skills, and Strategies for Academic Leaders

​December 2017
May 2018

Jennifer E. Woodward, PhD
Vice Chancellor for Research Operations
Professor of Surgery and Immunology

Considerable time and resources are committed to recruiting and retaining the best faculty, and for each faculty member to be successful, school and departmental leaders are required to negotiate on their behalf. During this interactive session, faculty learned the "dos" and "don'ts" of negotiating in academia and developed a tool-kit of tips and strategies for negotiating with institutional leadership on behalf of their faculty and themselves.

View the recording of this session.


2016 - 2017 Workshop Series

Academics as Leaders: Becoming More Effective and Efficient

How Bias Creeps into Decision Making and How to Minimize Its Impact

This workshop series was designed from the perspective of faculty who serve as chairs, program directors, associate deans, and in other administrative roles.

This workshop series explored obstacles in increasing diversity in faculty hiring.  The workshops focused on understanding our biases, how biases can impact decision making, and how to mitigate the effect of implicit biases.


“How Bias Creeps into Decision Making and How to Minimize Its Impact” Workshop Series

“Recruiting an Excellent and Diverse Faculty: Mitigating the Effects of Implicit Bias in Decision-Making”
February 2017

In this session, Dr. Blee presented a protocol developed by the Dietrich School Diversity Committee to mitigate the effect of implicit bias in faculty recruiting and graduate student admissions.

The workshop was led by Dr. Kathleen Blee, Associate Dean, Chair of the Diversity Committee, and Distinguished Professor of Sociology, Dietrich School of Arts & Sciences. View a video recording of Dr. Blee's workshop.

“Understanding Unconscious Bias”
January 2017

Bias is part of being human. In our faculty roles as teachers, researchers, and academic leaders, it is critical to understand our biases, identify how these biases affect our judgments and decision making, and develop strategies to overcome our biases.

In this workshop participants reviewed the research on bias, identified how bias can creep into our judgments and decision making, and developed strategies for overcoming bias.

The workshop was led by Dr. Ann Thompson, Vice Dean of the University School of Medicine and Professor of Critical Care Medicine and Pediatrics. Dr. Thompson is a certified trainer on unconscious bias and in leading this workshop used examples and exercises in a very interactive format.

“Are You Aware?” with Theater Delta
November 2016

This interactive theater performance explored obstacles in increasing diversity in faculty hiring. Participants viewed a faculty recruiting scene, interacted with the actors, and participated in a facilitated discussion about implicit bias. Questions explored in this workshop included: "How does implicit and unconscious bias operate?" and "How can we improve search outcomes through a better understanding of bias?"

"Academics as Leaders: Becoming More Effective and Efficient" Workshop Series

"Fundraising Fundamentals: Engaging Alumni and Potential Donors, Making an Ask, Stewardship"
Thursday, April 6, 2017
[Please be advised that the April 6 session has been postponed and will be rescheduled for Fall 2017]

In this interactive session we will focus on three core skills in fundraising: engagement, solicitation, and stewardship. Attendees will learn to think strategically about the process of fundraising from initial contact with potential donors to follow up with donors. The focus will be on takeaways that can be applied immediately.

This workshop will be led by Maura Farrell, Associate Head for Strategic and External Affairs, Winchester Thurston School

"Effective Conversations on Difficult Topics"
March 2017

Do you ever dread having conversations you know you should have, or steer clear of them entirely? Many people do, and for different reasons—perhaps to avoid the uncomfortable feelings that arise when discussing a conflict. You might be trying to protect a relationship you value. Maybe you aren’t as confident as you’d like to be in your ability to navigate through a contentious discussion. And yet, in all likelihood, ignoring the issue won’t improve the situation. In this engaging and interactive session, attendees were provided with practical tools and techniques for enhancing your confidence and effectiveness in tackling challenging or uncomfortable discussions. This session prepared attendees with their own personal examples of a challenging discussion they needed to have—the facilitators helped attendees explore ways to improve their outcomes.

The workshop was led by Alice Pescuric, Talent Management Consultant.

"Creating Change: Agility and Execution"
February 2017

In today’s world, change is the only constant, and the ability to adapt is critical for departments and schools. But organizing and leading change is hard. In this workshop, we discuss a strategic approach to change management. The workshop integrated practical examples and best practices with the latest knowledge in human behavior, network dynamics, communication, and process management. Attendees left with greater insight and a practical toolkit for managing change.

The workshop was led by Dr. Ravi Madhavan, Professor of Business Administration, Joseph M. Katz Graduate School of Business. View a video recording of Dr. Madhavan's workshop.

"How Can Greater Self-Insight Make Your Job Easier and Make You More Productive?"
January 2017

Alice Pescuric, Talent Management Consultant, facilitated a professional development session designed specifically for faculty in administrative roles, with a focus on developing better self-insight, thereby making your time in academic administration more productive and more rewarding.

The workshop was led by Alice Pescuric, Talent Management Consultant. Alice has more than 25 years of experience in the field of Human Resources, and she is currently an independent consultant focused on the areas of leadership, organizational development, strategic planning and executive assessment and coaching.

We offered this workshop a second time this year because of the extremely strong positive response to the first offering and multiple requests for another time for this important session.


Provost's Diversity Institute for Faculty Development 2017

The 2017 Provost’s Diversity Institute for Faculty Development was created to offer University of Pittsburgh faculty the opportunity to increase awareness about diversity and develop the skills needed to teach in a diverse, multicultural environment. Whether it’s expanding your diversity mindfulness in classroom discussions or designing learning activities that incorporate a variety of perspectives, this institute is appropriate for any full- or part-time faculty member who wants to deepen their teaching practice.

Seminars on Race and Gender in Teaching

What White Institutions Can Learn from Hispanic-Serving Institutions
May 2017
Gina Garcia, School of Education

Identity Politics in the Classroom
May 2017
Gabby Yearwood, Dept. of Anthropology, Dept. of Gender, Sexuality, & Women’s Studies

The Conversation Crisis: Managing Your Bias, Facilitating Conversations, and Finding Common Ground in the Classroom
May 2017
Mary Margaret Kerr, School of Education
Joe Horne, University Center for Teaching and Learning

Teaching Race to College Students—2017 Black/White Update
June 2017
Ralph Bangs, University Center for International Studies

Students and Poverty

How Socioeconomic Factors Shape Student Learning and What We Can Do
May 2017
Lori Delale-O’Connor, Center for Urban Education
Gerald Dickinson, School of Law
Ken Regal, Just Harvest
Elizabeth Votruba-Drzal, Dept. of Psychology


Transformative Intergroup Dialogue Workshop

May 2017
Mario C. Browne and Erika Gold Kestenberg, Pitt Intergroup Dialogue Collaborative

Understanding Our Students Series

This series focused on understanding the intersection of various identities within the student experience. Faculty had the chance to hear what Pitt students have to say about these important topics, and to reflect on what it means for their teaching practice. Each workshop featured a faculty facilitator and a panel of Pitt students.

Understanding the Background and Academic Preparation of Students from Chinese Cultures
May 2017
Meiyi Song, University Center for Teaching and Learning

Political Diversity in the Classroom
May 2017
Andrew Lotz, Dept. of Political Science and Assistant Dean of Arts & Sciences

Muslim Student Perspectives
May 2017
Jeanette Jouili, Dept. of Religious Studies

Students on the Autism Spectrum
May 2017
Shaun Eack, School of Social Work


Co-sponsored by the Provost’s Advisory Council for Women’s Concerns and the Office of Diversity and Inclusion

Shaping Your Future Through Mentoring

This panel highlighted women from across the University of Pittsburgh who have successful experiences as mentors and mentees. The panelists shared their experiences on initiating, developing, and growing successful mentoring partnerships. The panel was moderated by Colleen O. Fedor, Executive Director of the Mentoring Partnership of Southwestern Pennsylvania. Panelists featured women from across Pitt, including Dr. Bita Moghaddam, Professor of Neuroscience and Psychiatry, Coach Debbie Yohman, the head coach of the Pitt Women’s Gymnastics program, Dr. Anne-Marie Oswald, Assistant Professor of Neuroscience, Meredyth Wegener, graduate student, and Brittany West, undergraduate student.

Workshop on Negotiating Skills for Women

Ayana Ledford, founding executive director of PROGRESS (Program for Research and Outreach on Gender Equity in Society) hosted a workshop on the art of negotiation and self-sufficiency for women faculty, staff, and students.


Sponsored by the Office of the Provost

Taking a Deeper Dive into our Personalities Using the MBTI (Step 2)

Though you may have the same four Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) letters as a colleague, you might feel that you are completely different. The MBTI Step II uses facets to explain these differences. Through multiple activities, we discussed how our personalities communicate best with others, and respond during conflict, change, and stress. Moderated by Maureen Lazar, Consultant, Organization Development


"Maureen did a great job at engaging us and providing an open discussion. I have gained so much today. Thank you for offering this!"

"Great practical info I can apply!"

Examining Implicit Bias in Faculty Recruiting

Theater Delta, a North Carolina-based theater company that uses interactive theater for social change, used scripted and improvisational audience participatory theater to promote dialogue and solutions addressing how implicit and unconscious bias can influence faculty search committee selections. Participants in "Are You Aware?" witnessed a scene about the hiring of a STEM faculty member, had an opportunity to interact with and challenge the characters in the scene, and then took part in a facilitated discussion about the issues raised.


"This was an excellent teaching vehicle! I thought the performance and script were spot on! Perhaps have all appointment committees that are charged with faculty hiring participate in this type of training."

"Good awareness building!"

"I think all hiring managers and/or supervisors need to attend these workshops..."

Making Conflict Work for You

Conflict is inevitable and you must decide how to handle the conflict, whether the conflict involves faculty, staff, or students. What are the implications of the decisions you make? At what point do you intercede? In this workshop, participants identified their preferred way to handle conflict, recognize alternatives that can ultimately lead to positive change, and identify strategies to resolve conflicts. Moderated by Maureen Lazar, Consultant, Organization Development

Managing for Excellence

This session included a panel of experienced Pitt faculty who have served and are serving in administrative roles in units that run exceptionally well. They taught from their experience about the keys to having your department or school be more effective. Topics included: learning to lead effectively; working with faculty to develop and advance a unit’s goals; aligning unit goals, programs, and activities with University goals; and developing successful processes and practices to implement planned programs and activities. Moderated by Dr. Larry Feick, Professor of Business Administration, Katz Graduate School of Business.

Panelists included:

  • Dr. George Reid Andrews, Distinguished Professor of History, Kenneth P. Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences
  • Dr. Kathleen Blee, Associate Dean for Graduate Studies and Research and Distinguished Professor of Sociology, Kenneth P. Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences
  • Dr. Mingking Chyu, Associate Dean for International Initiatives and Leighton and Mary Orr Chair Professor, Swanson School of Engineering
  • Dr. Stephen Robar, Associate Dean of Academic Affairs and Associate Professor of Political Science, University of Pittsburgh at Bradford
  • Dr. Ann E. Thompson, Vice Dean and Professor of Critical Care Medicine and Pediatrics, School of Medicine

"It was useful to hear from a variety of people with different experiences. The concreteness of the discussion and examples was valuable."

“Can I Be of Any Help?” An Interactive Theatre Performance on Race Relations in the Classroom and an Interactive Workshop

Led by Theatre Delta, a North Carolina-based theater company that uses interactive theater for social change, participants experienced a thought-provoking session about the student experience through an interactive theatre performance on race relations in the classroom.

Topics addressed included: racial stereotypes, self-segregation, bystander intervention, and micro-aggressions. A discussion on the performance followed as an interactive workshop that included small group conversations related to the performance and general campus diversity issues.

Film Viewing and Discussion: "What's Race Got to Do with It?"

"What's Race Got to Do with It?" is a 49-minute documentary film that goes beyond identity politics, celebratory history, and interpersonal relations to consider social disparities and their impact on student success in today's post-Civil Rights world. Pitt's Mario Browne and Paula Davis led students, staff and faculty in a discussion after a viewing of the film.

Intergroup Dialogue Training

Designed to provide the foundational skills and knowledge necessary to facilitate multicultural group interactions, Intergroup Dialogue Training develops basic group facilitation skills through theoretical and experiential learning on topics such as group dynamics, conflict intervention, intergroup communication, and community building. Participants engaged in discussions, activities, and readings focused on prejudice, stereotyping, privilege, oppression, social identity, and group development.

An Inclusive Classroom: Practical Lessons and Techniques for Constructing a Truly Open Learning Environment for LGBTQIA Students

What does it mean to create a truly inclusive classroom with respect to students' sexual orientations and gender identities? In this interactive workshop, participants explored this question in depth, through the lens of the most current scholarship in LGBTQIA college student identity, needs, and experiences. Creative application of proven strategies (including classroom practices, curricular integration, and tools for responding effectively to bias) that can be used in any discipline was demonstrated. Together, participants envisioned and enacted ways that LGBTQIA students and their allies can experience an enhanced sense of belonging in the classroom, toward their persistence and success.


Other Workshops and Programs That May Be Of Interest

A wide range of workshops on topics ranging from effective teaching strategies to how to use popular educational technologies to making your online materials accessible to all are offered throughout the academic year by the University Center for Teaching and Learning. The Center for Teaching will also arrange to bring these workshops to your school or department. A few of the many programs available include:

Best Practices in Online Teaching

Best Practices in Online Teaching summarizes and synthesizes research about the most effective practices in teaching learner-centered courses and point to CourseWeb tools that can help you implement engaging teaching strategies.

Dealing with Difficult Situations in the Classroom

Dealing with Difficult Situations in the Classroom will help to prepare strategies for addressing such challenging classroom situations, including evaluating possible courses of action in difficult situations and applying Pitt’s policies in dealing with these situations.

Successful Teaching in Large Enrollment Courses

This interactive workshop introduces easy strategies for class participation, designing in-class activities, and implementing educational technology to promote interactive teaching in large lecture classes.

Copyright and Fair Use in Higher Education

In this session you will discuss legal issues associated with copyright in higher education, including guidelines for use of copyrighted materials.

Not Speaking the Same Language? 4 Steps to Engaging Your International Students

This workshop will cover the challenges international students face and how to create a specific plan to engage your international students based on a 4-step approach.

Introduction to Blackboard

This workshop provides the information and skills you need to start using Blackboard, the University of Pittsburgh’s learning management system.

For a complete schedule of workshops, visit the Teaching Center website.