PITTSBURGH TECHNICAL COLLEGE PRESIDENT PRESENTING TO EXCLUSIVE EDUCATION LEADERSHIP THINK TANK
Dr. Alicia B. Harvey-Smith to Share Insights on Higher Education’s Responsibility in a Post-COVID World
PITTSBURGH—July 30, 2020 –Dr. Alicia B. Harvey-Smith, President and CEO of Pittsburgh Technical College (PTC), will address the 2020 RTM Higher Education CIO Congress annual convention on Monday and Tuesday, August 3 and 4. The Congress is an invitation-only program for technology leaders from innovative institutions of higher education, and Dr. Harvey-Smith will present on leading higher education’s emergence post-COVID-19 amongst executives from Harvard University, Lehigh University, Boston College, and several other colleges and universities.
“The global pandemic caused us to push the pause button in education at all levels, and in order to adapt to a virtual world, we needed to move at the speed of thought,” says Dr. Harvey-Smith on the topic of this year’s Congress, Leading Through Disruption, Leveraging Technology to Overcome Unprecedented Challenges. “I am honored to share with such a distinguished group of thought leaders, the steps Pittsburgh Technical College has taken to respond to this unprecedented challenge and the strategies we designed to emerge, post-COVID-19, as a new standard in higher education. I’m excited to discuss our transition to functioning more fully as a virtually excellent, hybrid institution offering both online and on-ground instructional modalities and successfully blending the academic and applied education necessary to reinvigorate the workforce and refuel economic development.”
“The talents and forethought of PTC’s IT Department positioned us to make a seamless transition to the virtual learning environment in March,” Dr. Harvey-Smith continues. “And our faculty and staff showcased their virtual excellence by smoothly adapting to the demands and opportunities presented by technology and quickly reimagining the critical support our students required. They have been providing students with the quality face-to-face instruction, guidance, tutoring, and career advisement they were accustomed to, while ensuring that all aspects of the curriculum are aligned and conducive to the virtual environment allowing our students to remain on track to complete their graduation goals.”
Dr. Harvey-Smith’s Higher Education CIO Congress presentation will examine how the pandemic has disrupted the progression of operations, impacted fundraising and endowment strategies, and affected new student pipelines and enrollment activities. It will also include a reexamination of the higher education financial model and discuss whether the value of education will be reinterpreted as part of the new normal. Additionally, she will share elements of PTC’s extensive Return to Campus plan that successfully enabled the college to phase in a portion of its students on July 23, 2020, with limited in-person instruction and on-campus residency.
“As leaders in education, we can expect to face increased scrutiny and accountability while dealing with a reduction in resources,” Dr. Harvey-Smith explains. “However, by adopting bold, confident, strategic, and entrepreneurial leadership approaches and focusing on three Cs – communication, collaboration, and compassion – higher education can and will be a key factor in rebuilding our region and the nation.”
Having previously spoken on the topic of Emotional Intelligence (EI) at the 2019 Women in Leadership National Diversity Conference at the Harvard University Faculty Club, Dr. Harvey-Smith will incorporate into her Congress presentation the importance of EI to effective leadership during periods of rapid change and uncertainty. “It is important to recognize the emotional toll that change has on an organization and the people who work towards its success. Incorporating emotional intelligence and related strategies will enable a coordinated response and help those impacted by change to feel empowered and engaged through empathy and communication,” explains Dr. Harvey-Smith.
This year’s Congress is available virtually to accommodate travel restrictions as a result of COVID-19. Organized by RTM, a business group specializing in B2B marketing and providing opportunities for professionals to collaborate and share best practices, the topics for each event are determined by IT leaders in higher education and designed to encourage discussion and implementation of innovative ideas.