APAC Professional Development Workshops

APAC Professional Development Workshops are specifically designed to build the management skills of those who work in the public sector. This includes government employees (federal, state, county, and local), elected officials, and non-profit professionals.

2020-2021 Workshops

We are currently developing our schedule for the 2020-2021 program year. Contact us at apacprog@ualr.edu to join our mailing list and receive information about future workshops as they become available.

2019-2020 Workshops – Closed for Registration

All 2019-2020 workshops are now closed for registration. The series included:

Arkansas Budget Process

Understand the budget process in Arkansas including the primary revenues and expenditures, the budget cycle, and key budgetary actors and their roles in creating the state budget. This workshop is instructed by Dr. Kim Hoffman, Associate Professor of Public Administration at UCA.

Arkansas Government 101

Roy Ragland, Chief of Staff for the Arkansas House of Representatives, will teach about the three branches of state government. Learn about the legislative process including how to lobby for and pass legislation. Examine the recent reorganization of the executive branch and the duties of the seven constitutional offices. Delve into the structure of the state’s judiciary and how it affects government operations.

Crisis Communication

Dr. Malcolm Glover, crisis manager and communication analyst, will help you understand the complexities of crisis communication and preparedness. This includes learning how to create a crisis communication plan and identifying techniques for improving crisis response.

Cultural Humility

You will build your own cultural humility and learn techniques for creating an empowering and respectful work environment for everyone. This workshop is taught by Amber Booth-McCoy from the UAMS Center for Diversity Affairs.

Debate for Conflict Management

Learn a flexible, repeatable process for engaging in productive conflict that will help you lead your team to develop ideas, solve problems, and meet new challenges. Melissa Maxcy Wade, President of the Glenn Pelham Foundation for Debate Education, will teach you how to communicate more effectively, listen critically, and create a productive space for disagreement.

Difficult Conversations

Become more effective at navigating the inevitable difficult conversations you encounter in your professional (and personal) lives. Dr. Amy Hawkins, the Director of the Center for Teaching Excellence at the University of Central Arkansas, will teach about the factors that make conversations difficult, the underlying anatomy of a difficult conversation, and a five-phase approach for preparing for and having difficult conversations.


Develop your own personal leadership philosophy by examining exemplary leadership practices. Dr. Joe Waldrum, retired Director of LeadAR, will help you develop your leadership style.

Managing Human Resources

You will learn best practices for hiring, empowering, and holding employees accountable. This includes writing clear job expectations, interviewing effectively, creating a motivational work environment, and successfully handling performance problems. Veronica Alexander with the Arkansas Department of Labor and Andrea Alford with the Arkansas Real Estate Commission will share their extensive human resource expertise with participants of this workshop.

Managing Public Disputes

Develop skills for managing multi-party public disputes and collaborative problem solving. Explore effective methods for analyzing and framing public issues. Practice procedures for engaging in dialogue and deliberation. This highly interactive workshop is led by Dr. Christy Standerfer, Professor Emerita of the UA Clinton School of Public Service.

Meeting Facilitation

Develop the skills required to conduct effective meetings. David Monteith, a consultant with significant facilitation experience, will teach you how to develop appropriate agendas that align with your meeting goals, establish effective meeting standards, and use a variety of meeting facilitation techniques.

Organizational Values and Ethics

Dr. Peter Gess, Associate Provost for Engaged Learning at Hendrix College, will help you navigate working as a public servant charged with protecting the public trust. You will refine your personal code of ethics, understand how that code affects decision making, and learn tools for making ethical choices.

Presentation Skills

Hone your ability to design and deliver a professional presentation with Dr. Amy Hawkins, the Director of the Center for Teaching Excellence at UCA. Emphasis will be placed on analyzing audiences, establishing desired outcomes, organizing supporting content, and delivering key messages effectively and engagingly.

Program Evaluation

Dr. Tracey Barnett McElwee, Assistant Professor in the School of Social Work at UA, will teach the steps involved with measuring program results. Learn to develop a program logic model, choose an appropriate evaluation design, and collect relevant program data.

Project Management

Ashley Matejka, a Certified Project Management Professional, will teach you the best practices for project management from coping to planning to execution. This workshop will help you manage your own project work more effectively and help your team(s) achieve their goals on time and in budget.

Strategic and Operational Planning

Learn strategic and operational planning principles and practices from Ron Copeland, a planning and management consultant. Understand how to set strategic goals, determine actions to achieve those goals, and mobilize resources to execute those goals.

Writing for Business in the Public Sector

Learn writing and editing strategies to help you communicate more effectively with the public. Dr. Karen Kuralt, Coordinator of the Professional and Technical Writing Master’s program at UA Little Rock, will expose you to the latest techniques for writing reports, performance reviews, memos, emails, and more. Progress your skills in developing persuasive arguments, writing to different audiences for different purposes, formatting documents to assist with reading comprehension, and editing for clarity.



Participants in Professional Development Workshops may be eligible to apply their workshop credit toward meeting requirements for the Arkansas Governmental Managers (AGM) and Certified Public Managers® (CPM) certifications. Participants may also be eligible for continuing education credits (CEUs) with many professional organizations.

Registration Policies

  • Registration closes when a workshop is full or the registration deadline is reached (whichever occurs first).
  • You may not register additional individuals or substitute participants after the registration deadlines.
  • You may cancel a registration up to 5 working days before a workshop is set to begin. Any cancellations after this deadline will result in a $50 late cancellation fee.

Workshop Topic Suggestions

Professional Development Workshops may be developed to your individual needs and requirements.  If you are interested in having APAC develop a training for you, your staff, and/or for a professional organization or group, contact us to discuss.

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