What is the Professional Development Academy?
The Professional Development Academy is dedicated to providing tailored training programs to foster career growth for targeted staff groups and to support Duke's staffing needs. The goals of the Academy include improving retention and strengthening workforce commitment, developing the skills and capabilities of staff, and supporting Duke's commitment to diversity.
Why were office staff jobs chosen as a program of the Academy, and what is the goal of the program?
The continuing demand for skilled and committed office staff to handle critical administration responsibilities is reflected in Duke's weekly job vacancy listing. At the present time, there are a large number of vacancies listed for these types of positions. Even with vacancy management, the number of vacancies in office staff positions has consistently remained at a high level due to growth within Duke University and Duke Health programs and restructuring of departments' needs. Duke frequently finds itself competing in the local market to attract well-qualified and experienced staff for these key positions.
These job levels were also targeted because they span across Duke University and Duke Health and because short-term, intensive training would help qualify participants for higher-level jobs. The goal of the Office Staff Development program is to provide participants with the necessary competencies to transition successfully within Duke from job level 2-5, B1 and B2 into advanced job opportunities.
What topics will be included in the training?
During the 44 weeks of the program, participants will take general office administration courses including:
- Customer Service Basics
- Work Behaviors
- Basic Grammar and Writing
- Office Protocols and Procedures
- Beginning Computer Training (Windows, Keyboarding)
- Advanced Computer Training in MS Word, Excel
- Resume Writing
- Over 100 hours of internship experience (5 hours per week)
- Monthly meetings with Mentor and Coach
Who will teach the classes?
Duke and Durham Technical Community College instructors will teach classes.
How long will it take to complete the program?
- The class begins May 2017.
- The program will take 44 weeks to complete. Selected individuals will participate in classroom training. This time will be structured from 5 pm to 8 pm (Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday) plus one monthly session from 8:30 to 4:30 (2nd Monday). During the second six months, the evening class will meet one night per week, plus one monthly session from 8:30 to 4:30 (2nd Monday) and an additional 5 hours will be spent at an internship site. During the 44-week period, participants are to be released from their regular work schedule to cover training time. Some training time may be outside a participant's normal work schedule.
- Participants will be paid for training time per week.
- Wages will be paid by the department to the participant. The Professional Development Academy will reimburse a department for 50% of the training time.
Will participants get paid for hours spent in training?
Yes, participants will be paid for time spent in training. The Professional Development Academy will reimburse the department for 50% of the training time.
Where will the classes be held?
Classes will be held in a convenient location on campus that allows for adequate parking.
How does someone qualify for this program?
The following are requirements for selection into the program:
- Full-time Duke staff with a minimum of two years of continuous service with successful performance and no disciplinary actions or issues within the past two years.
- Program participant is required to make a commitment to remain at Duke for a minimum of 18 months after graduation from the program. There is financial payback for instruction costs should a participant leave the program.
- Currently working in a level 2-5, B1 or B2 administrative/clerical or service area positions.
- High school diploma or GED
- Submit a typed application and manager recommendation, letter of interest and a resume. Handwritten applications will be returned.
- One additional strong letter of recommendation from a former manager or supervisor.
- Ability to commit to10 hours per week of rigorous professional development for 44 weeks
- Basic keyboarding skills
- Preference will be given to candidates meeting the above criteria and willing to actively seek a transfer or lateral move within Duke.
What types of jobs will graduates qualify for upon completion of the program? Will graduates be guaranteed a promotion or new job once they complete the program?
Although graduates are not guaranteed a promotion or new job upon completion of the program, they will possess the necessary skills to qualify for jobs at Duke in levels 5, 6 and 7 and B2 and B3, such as Administrative Clerk, Patient Service Associate and Appointment Coordinator. Participants will work closely with a recruiter in Human Resources Recruitment and Staffing for placement in a new position consistent with their training.
Will participants have to pay back any of the financial support provided to staff by Duke?
In return for the financial assistance provided for training, participants must agree to work at Duke for 18 months after completion of the program. If participants drop out of the program or leave Duke prior to fulfilling their 18-month commitment, they will be required to repay a portion of the educational costs for instruction, books and supplies.
For more information, please contact the Professional Development Academy at 919 684-5406 or by email at PDI@duke.edu.