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Competition, Community, and Educational Growth

Contemporary Perspectives on Competitive Speech and Debate

Edited By Kristopher Copeland and Garret L. Castleberry

Competition, Community, and Educational Growth: Contemporary Perspectives on Competitive Speech and Debate is an up-to-date text providing informed academic thought concerning the impact of forensics. Its primary focus is to demonstrate how the forensic activity allows students to actively engage and learn outside the classroom. Specifically, Competition, Community, and Educational Growth focuses on how students educationally grow through the activity. The book frames methods and pedagogy as best practices to provide educational growth for students and explicitly connect learning outcomes for students. Coming from the perspective of higher educational instructors, the book provides insight beyond the high school experience. Competition, Community, and Educational Growth examines contemporary perspectives on competitive speech and debate theory, experience, and methods of instruction.

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Chapter 22: Enhancing Institutional Awareness: The Value of a Strategic Communication Plan for Program Growth and Development (Christopher J. Fenner)

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CHAPTER   TWENTY - TWO

Enhancing Institutional Awareness: The Value of a Strategic Communication Plan for Program Growth and Development

CHRISTOPHER J. FENNER

 

The director of forensics (DoF) position is a balancing act between coach, educator, and administrator, which is a diversity of skillsets not widely recognized outside of the forensic community. There are a variety of resources available to boost coaching skills and often directors come to the position with undergraduate competition or graduate coaching experience. However, the role of director is often taken with little prior experience in the management of an organization. A lack of administrative experience combined with the organizational and political challenges of higher education can be a source of great frustration for directors seeking to build or maintain a strong institutional reputation.

While there has been much debate about the notion of academic institutions being managed like businesses, it is undeniable that higher education funding is shrinking.1 Increased competition amongst private universities has similarly resulted in budget tightening and program cuts. The threat of budget cuts is not a new phenomenon in forensics. Alexander and Strickland noted the shrinking pool of resources for forensic programs more than three decades ago.2 In an era where institutions of higher education must make difficult budgeting decisions, programs without strong institutional support risk a loss of funding or support staff.

The forensic community has grown in leaps and bounds, as is evidenced by...

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