High Potential Employee
Leadership Academy

The High Potential Employee Leadership Academy is a 9-month experience that involves a series of monthly development sessions that address key leadership topics and specific focus groups. The SHSU members of the program will be selected through a self-nomination process. Applicants must be full-time employees, have at least one (1) year of experience, and be endorsed (via a signature on the self-nomination letter) by supervision through the proper chain of command. Please click the button below to view the Leadership Academy overview.

Leadership Academy Overview

Leadership Academy Alumni

Casey Cox smiles for a photo. Wearing a snappy orange and blue suit. Casey Cox, Director of Development at SHSU, elected to Huntsville City Council

- 2022-2023

Dr. William Wells poses for a photo. Wearing a button down shirt. Smiling in front of a neon sign glowing Justice. Dr. William Wells, Chair of the College of Criminal Justice at SHSU, collaborated with a community organization to create a Community Engaged Scholarship

- 2021-2022

Ricardo Montelongo smiles for a photo. Looks up and off camera smiling. Dr. Ricardo Montelongo, Associate Professor of Educational Leadership, honored with the 2022 Outstanding Graduate Mentor award from SHSU and the Robert H. Shaffer Distinguished Alumni Award from Indiana University

- 2020-2021

Dr. Melinda Miller Holt smiles for a photo.Dr. Melinda Miller Holt named Dean of the College of Science and Engineering Technology

- 2019-2020

Leadership Academy Mission

To identify, select, and develop high performing employees in order to strengthen the fabric of the community by enhancing the leadership ability of our emerging leaders.


  • Strengthen the fabric of the university, community and surrounding area with an increased commitment to the professional development of faculty and staff employees
  • Develop a core of future leaders possessing relationships which extend beyond respective departments and organizations
  • Create the momentum of leadership development along with a reinvestment of experience, knowledge, and with a spirit of giving back to the community


"The perspectives on change and creating distance from situations have aided me in time management and empowering others to work toward our goals. Communicating organizational goals and allowing others to use their creativity and energy to move us forward has freed me to focus on larger issues and creating a shared sense of purpose."

- Associate Dean

“Leadership is a critical, yet sometimes elusive concept. The SHSU Leadership Academy exposes you to the theory and practice of leadership, placing you in real-world situations that are outside of your comfort zone, but helping to stretch your mind’s view of what it means to be a leader. David Yebra takes the time to tailor the academy to you. In return, you learn about your community and yourself. This is a valuable program that creates friendships, contacts, and unforgettable experiences.”

- Director, SHSU

I have enjoyed having time to reflect on my leadership abilities and to learn new ways of thinking about my role as a leader. I am also very grateful that the cohort included individuals from other institutions in Huntsville. The “cross-pollination” was extremely helpful to putting things into perspective and to understanding leadership in both academic and non-academic settings.

- Associate Dean

"Participating in the Employee Leadership Academy has been an incredible experience that has brought me closer to fellow Bearkats and to the Huntsville community. It’s not often that I am able to interact with professionals from TDCJ or Huntsville ISD, so the networking opportunities and the chance to learn more about those organizations has been invaluable. Through a series of challenges, the Leadership Academy class has motivated me to build more meaningful relationships and to use my leadership abilities to inspire others. By putting us in situations outside of our comfort zones, the class has taught me different approaches to resolve conflict, make difficult decisions, and drive organizational culture shifts."

- Assistant Director, SHSU