Big Ten Academic Alliance Academic Leadership Program

Big Ten Academic Alliance

Academic Leadership Program

Each year, up to six Nebraska faculty members are selected as ALP Fellows and participate in the Big Ten Academic Alliance Academic Leadership Program. The Academic Leadership Program is one of the most successful leadership initiatives of the Big Ten Academic Alliance. Established in 1989, the program develops the academic leadership and managerial skills of nominated faculty who have demonstrated exceptional ability and academic promise. The program addresses the challenges of academic administration at major research universities while helping faculty members prepare to meet those challenges.

ALP Fellows attend three 3-day seminars, each at a different Big Ten campus. They also participate in on-campus meetings throughout the academic year with members of our university's academic leadership.

Learn more about the Big Ten Academic Alliance Academic Leadership Program.

Past ALP Fellows


2020-21 ALP Fellows

Eve Brank

Eve Brank

Professor, Psychology
Director of the Center on Children, Families, and the Law

Eve Brank is the Director of the Center on Children, Families, and the Law, a Professor in the Department of Psychology, and has a courtesy appointment in the College of Law. Her research primarily focuses on the way the law intervenes, and sometimes interferes, in family and personal decision making. She recently published The Psychology of Family Law with NYU Press. She serves as a Co-Editor of Court Review the official journal of the American Judges Association. At Nebraska, she is a Co-Director for the Peer Review of Teaching Project and the faculty advisor for Scientific Resources and the Law. She is an active member of the American Psychology-Law Society and has served on its executive board in several elected positions including President. She is also the recipient of the AP-LS Teaching and Mentoring Award. Brank received her Bachelor of Arts in psychology and sociology from Jacksonville University and her law degree and doctorate in psychology from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Prior to joining the Nebraska faculty, she was on the faculty in the Department of Criminology, Law and Society at the University of Florida.


Deirdre Cooper Owens

Deirdre Cooper Owens

Associate Professor, History
Charles and Linda Wilson Professor in the History of Medicine
Director of the Humanities in Medicine Program

Deirdre Cooper Owens is the Charles and Linda Wilson Professor in the History of Medicine and Director of the Humanities in Medicine Program. She is a nationally recognized public speaker and media expert on race and medicine. Cooper Owens has won awards for her scholarship and advocacy work in reproductive and birthing justice. Her first book won an award from the Organization of American Historians. She is also the Director of the Program in African American History at The Library Company of Philadelphia. Her scholarship has been recognized by the American College of Obstetrician and Gynecologists where she served as a fellow. As Director of UNL's HMED program, she has worked with a number of institutions from UC Berkeley to the March of Dimes to help educate the public about racial health disparities. She is the incoming Vice President for the Berkshire Conference of Women Historians and has published a number of academic and popular writings about the intersections of race, slavery, and medicine. She earned her Bachelor of Arts in mass communications from Bennett College and her Master of Arts in African American studies from Clark Atlanta University. She earned her doctorate in history from the University of California, Los Angeles.


Eileen Hebets

Eileen Hebets

Associate Professor, History
Charles and Linda Wilson Professor in the History of Medicine
Director of the Humanities in Medicine Program

Eileen Hebets is a newly named Charles Bessey Professor in the School of Biological Sciences, a courtesy faculty member in the Department of Entomology, and a recently named Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Her research group uses arachnids to study a diversity of evolutionary themes, including the evolution and function of animal communication, animal mating systems, animal sensory systems, and the neural basis of complex behavior. Hebets is also a pioneer of informal science education, capitalizing on arachnids’ natural charisma to help students of all ages engage and persist in science. In 2017, Hebets received the university’s Innovation, Development and Engagement Award, the system’s most prestigious award for using academic expertise to enrich the broader community. Hebets has received nearly continuous funding for her science, as well as her science communication and informal science education. She has taken on numerous leadership roles both within and outside the university. Hebets is the second president elect for the Animal Behavior Society and the Director of the Engagement and Outreach Committee of the American Arachnological Society. She is also the acting Chair for the UNL Chapter of the Association for Women in Science and a lead organizer of UNL’s SciComm conference.


Nick Pace

Nick Pace

Professor and Chair,
Educational Administration

Nick Pace, former social worker, teacher, coach, and principal, serves as Professor and Chair of the Department of Educational Administration. His passion and scholarly focus has been on preparing and sustaining school principals. He is the author of four books on the principalship, including Reality Calling and Seeking Balance, which are fictional accounts of the events in a principal’s first year and The Principal’s Hot Seat, which features video footage from an intense role play he developed. Pace’s work has been published in Educational Leadership Review, American School Board Journal, and the Journal of Advanced Academics. He has maintained professional affiliations with state-level school administrator associations, the National Rural Education Association, and the University Council for Educational Administration. Pace earned his Bachelor of Arts in sociology and Doctor of Education from the University of Northern Iowa and Master of Science in Education from Drake University. He was inducted to the Iowa Academy of Education in 2016 and received the UNI College of Education Award for Outstanding Scholarship and Diversity Matters Award, both in 2012. Outreach and dissemination of his research into the school experiences of gay and lesbian high school students led to his receipt of the Iowa Friend of Civil Rights Award in 2010.


Susan Sheridan

Susan Sheridan

George Holmes University Professor, Educational Psychology,
Founding Director, Nebraska Center for Research on Children, Youth, Families and Schools,
Associate Dean for Research and Creative Activity, College of Education and Human Sciences

Susan Sheridan, George Holmes University Professor of Educational Psychology, the founding Director of the Nebraska Center for Research on Children, Youth, Families and Schools, and College of Education and Human Sciences' Associate Dean for Research and Creative Activity, is internationally recognized as a leader in parent engagement, family-school partnerships, early childhood intervention, social-behavioral interventions for students at risk, and rural education. Sheridan’s federally-funded research has resulted in more than 200 books, chapters, and journal articles on these and related topics. Sheridan, a Fellow of Division 16 of the American Psychological Association and past president of the Society for the Study of School Psychology, was bestowed the 1993 Lightner Witmer award by APA’s Division of School Psychology for early career accomplishments; the 2005 Presidential Award from the National Association of School Psychologists; the 2014 University of Nebraska Outstanding Research and Creative Activity Award; the 2015 Senior Scientist Award for lifetime career accomplishments from APA’s Division of School Psychology; and the 2019 University of Wisconsin’s Educational Psychology Distinguished Alumni Award. She holds a Bachelor of Science in psychology and Master of Science in psychology with emphasis in school psychology from Western Illinois University, and a doctorate in educational (school) psychology from University of Wisconsin-Madison.


Leen-Kiat Soh

Leen-Kiat Soh

Professor,
Computer Science and Engineering

Leen-Kiat Soh is a Professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering. His research areas include multiagent systems and modeling, computer science education, and intelligent data analytics, with applications in interdisciplinary domains such as poem detection, smart grid simulation, social unrest anticipation, computer-aided education, and wildfire fighting. Soh has also contributed to improving K-12 computer science education in the state of Nebraska and beyond. He has published about 200 journal and conference papers. His research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, National Endowment for Humanities, and the Institute of Museum and Library Services. Soh also serves as a Co-Chair of the National Center for Women and Information Technology Academic Alliance, a national organization that is aimed at increasing diversity in the computing domain. He also serves as an Associate Editor for the IEEE Transactions on Education and the IEEE Transactions on Learning Technologies. Soh is a Fellow of the College of Arts and Sciences’ Teaching Academy. He received his Bachelor of Science with highest distinction, Master of Science, and doctorate with honors degrees in electrical engineering from the University of Kansas.