Society for College and University Planning (SCUP) is a nonprofit comprised of higher education professionals dedicated to the integration of planning on various college and university campuses. To do so, SCUP developed the Planning Institute, a series of workshops designed to lead college planners down a path that will create a concrete base for planning.
The curriculum for the Planning Institute allowed for the facilitators to have a lot of flexibility, which creating inconsistency in the training content and overall message delivery. SCUP implemented a full reconstruction of the curriculum and schedule of their workshops. The new curriculum included an oﬃcial Planning Institute facilitation manual and slide deck. This major overhaul led the program to grow rapidly, driving the need to up-skill more facilitators and training veteran facilitators on the new curriculum. While the new curriculum would create consistency in the course, SCUP wanted to do more. SCUP wanted to add even more value to the training by providing a basic facilitation skills course that focused on providing preparedness training to facilitators. SCUP determined that it would be advantageous to partner with TTA to craft a solution that would maximize consistency while adding value to the Planning Institute.
TTA developed a train-the-trainer (T3) program for both veteran and new facilitators which focused on basic facilitator preparedness. The course was incorporated into the new curriculum workshop and was designed to build facilitators skills on delivering the new Planning Institute Curriculum to learners. The T3 consisted of three modules, two of which were virtual and one was in-person. The training included workshop exercises featuring practice with feedback. TTA also created a training roadmap meant to serve as a guide that facilitators could use as a reference while facilitating courses. To date, the training has been delivered in both New Orleans and at SCUP’s annual conference in Washington D.C.
The ﬁrst two cohorts of the T3 program each had 12 learners (facilitators). Pairing the facilitator preparedness training program with the new curriculum training creates an environment where facilitators are able to ﬂourish and become conﬁdent in their roles. The training had a large impact on the consistency and value of the Planning Institute workshops. Feedback on the program has been extremely positive:
- SCUP noticed increased levels of consistency in the way facilitators delivered the curriculum
- Facilitators were more conﬁdent leading workshops after the T3 program
- Facilitators were more prepared prior to delivering training
- Facilitators felt a sense of accountability for the outcomes of the workshops they facilitated