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Developing the Next Generation of Innovative Higher Education Leaders

The Breakthrough Models Academy 2014 is a collaboration of EDUCAUSE, the League for Innovation in the Community College, and Next Generation Learning Challenges (NGLC), funded in part by a grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

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Read about the academy on the NGLC blog

The Academy's Goal

The Breakthrough Models Academy prepares current and emerging leaders ready to catalyze change by providing opportunities to challenge traditional thinking and design next generation learning models.  Designing and accelerating the adoption of those models will require leadership, innovation, and the use of technology. Examples of breakthrough models among NGLC’s grantees include:

A 2013 Participant Said:

"'My participation in the Breakthrough Models Academy has significantly expanded my knowledge and network. I have gained confidence to be bolder in providing courageous and inspired leadership in the context of my own institution and beyond."


The Residential Program

Participants come together for five busy days of speaker sessions with leaders in the field such as Paul LeBlanc, president of Southern New Hampshire University, and working sessions with their design challenge team and mentor coaches. The 2014 program will be in Cambridge, MA. The 2015 program will be in Chicago, IL from July 12-17.

The Coach-Supported Model Design Program

Following the residential program, design challenge teams will meet and create their own version of a 'breakthrough model' for student success that incorporates essential elements and builds on the information shared in the residential program.

The Model Design Presentation

The Academy culminates with presentation of selected designs at the EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative Annual Meeting. (Attending the ELI Annual Meeting is not required.)



2014 academy

  • 40% Private Institutions
  • 60% Public Institutions
  • 28% Two Year Colleges
  • 72% Four Year Colleges
  • Balanced gender representation
  • International: Australia and Canada
  • Carnegies Represented: Doctoral, Masters, Liberal Arts and Associates Colleges 

Topics of Interest

  • Affordability
  • Business models
  • Accessibility
  • Student completion
  • Student retention
  • Faculty Roles/ Development
  • Competency based education
  • Pedagogy
  • Globalization


Contact Us

For information about this program, please contact Nancy Millichap, Program Officer, Next Generation Learning Challenges.


Earn this badge

Through engaged participation in this program, you are eligible to earn this digital badge which recognizes your professional accomplishment.

Click for more information

Badge Information

This badge recognizes the next generation of change agents who will design higher education models that ensure the future of higher education is accessible, relevant, flexible, and sustainable.  These leaders are innovators of current instructional delivery and student support strategies, financial models, operating structures and institutional policies.

Earning this badge requires registration and engaged participation in the three-part Breakthrough Models Academy, including a face-to-face event, follow-up collaboration, and team presentation at the ELI Annual Meeting 2015.

Find out more about the EDUCAUSE badging program.



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