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Conklin, Joseph (2017) RURAL-URBAN LEADERSHIP PROGRAM (RULE) ASSESSMENT. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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The purpose of this study was to determine the outcomes and to offer improvement recommendations for the Rural-Urban Leadership Program (RULE) an agricultural-based leadership program. The RULE program is an agricultural-based leadership program that is administered by Penn State Extension under the College of Agricultural Sciences of Penn State University. Specifically, this study utilized the ten-point RULE curriculum plan and RULE program objectives to determine anticipated outcomes of RULE participants. Alumni were also asked to offer suggestions for RULE program improvement regarding curriculum and alumni engagement.
This study identified the outcomes and recommendations for programmatic improvement of the RULE program through a mixed-methods approach involving ten semi-structured interviews and a Qualtrics survey instrument. The sample population for both the semi-structured interview and the Qualtrics survey consisted of alumni that participated in the program over the last 9 Study Institutes or 15 years. There was a total of 206 alumni that completed the program, and 196 were accessible through email. Of the 196 accessible alumni, a total of 74 completed the Qualtrics survey which is a survey response rate of 38%.
Numerous positive outcomes were found due to participation in the RULE program including but not limited to an increase in confidence, communication skills, leadership aspirations, professional and personal networks, understanding of agricultural practices, and
understanding of the legislative process. This study also found that RULE alumni valued the program and for most of the alumni the program had exceeded their expectations. Alumni did suggest improvements for the program which included but not limited to curriculum modifications, the inclusion of more rigorous assignments including public speaking, and creating different tiers of participants. Alumni also suggested that there should be greater alumni engagement regarding communication, development, and educational opportunities.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Conklin, Josephjcc107@pitt.edujcc107
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairWeidman,
Committee MemberCrowley,
Committee MemberDeCiantis,
Date: 21 August 2017
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 30 March 2017
Approval Date: 21 August 2017
Submission Date: 9 June 2017
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 138
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Education > Administrative and Policy Studies
Degree: EdD - Doctor of Education
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: Leadership program, agricultural leadership program
Related URLs:
Date Deposited: 21 Aug 2017 17:01
Last Modified: 21 Aug 2017 17:01

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