Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Granting Department

Adult, Career, and Higher Education

Major Professor

William H. Young III, Ed.D.

Committee Member

Donald Dellow, Ed.D.

Committee Member

Robert Sullins, Ed.D.

Committee Member

Darlene Bruner, Ed.D.


leadership development, management, leadership, succession, succession planning


This research examined how two decidedly different groups of community college presidents from across the United States viewed the competencies, characteristics, and professional skills identified by the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) (2005) as important for effective community college leadership. The two groups participating in the research were from small, single-campus colleges serving rural populations and from large, multiple-campus colleges serving urban populations. The participants were asked to identify those activities and experiences that they found helpful in developing the AACC leadership competencies. The results from this research suggest that community college presidents from both sizes of college campuses widely regarded the AACC competencies as important to effective leadership. The respondents also provided insight into the experiences that helped form the characteristics related to the development of the competencies. Practical implications for the development and hiring of leaders to perform senior leadership roles within the community college system are offered.