Supporting Teaching and Professional Faculty: A Year in Review

May 27, 2021

By Laura Sponslor, Clinical Assistant Professor, Morgridge College of Education and Resident Scholar, Office of Teaching and Learning

Over the past year, the office of the Vice Provost of Faculty Affairs in collaboration with the Office of the Provost, Faculty Senate, and other partners, has initiated and continued to support the advancement and development of Teaching and Professional Faculty (TPF) through a series of initiatives and writings:

  • Faculty Learning Community: Teaching and Professional Faculty – Toolkit for Success – Led by Dr. Paul Michalec and Dr. Laura Sponsler, over 40 faculty participated in an FLC dedicated to building community, navigating higher education, and creating a welcoming, respectful culture for TPF.
  • Pathways to Promotion – Annual panel sponsored by Faculty Senate; October 2020 workshop featured Nancy Sasaki, John Tiedemann, Norma Hafenstein, and Laura Sponsler
  • Website – A new website dedicated to TPF launched with information about different TPF ranks and series
  • White Paper – Dr. Laura Sponsler authored the white paper Institutionalizing a Culture of Respect for Teaching and Professional Faculty, sharing a framework for six essential elements for faculty work and institutional success.
  • A series of presentations and talkbacks about the white paper and related topics at A Provost’s Panel – Supporting Teaching and Professional Faculty: An Institutional Priority, as well as presentations to the Dean’s Council, Faculty Affairs Associate Deans (FAAD), and Chairs and Directors about various TPF contributions to the DU community.
  • Future training for Chairs/Directors to support TPF, and an ongoing commitment to professional development for TPF faculty.

For more information or to be involved in future work related to TPF, please reach out to Laura Sponsler at

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