The Academy for Future Faculty (AFF) is a CIRTL@TAMU program. The Center for the Integration of Research, Teaching, and Learning (CIRTL) is an National Science Foundation (NSF) Center for Learning and Teaching in higher education. The CIRTL mission is to enhance excellence in undergraduate education through the development of a national faculty committed to implementing and advancing effective teaching practices for diverse learners as part of successful and varied professional careers.
As a CIRTL@TAMU program, AFF provides professional development for graduate students and post-docs in preparation for a career in higher education. AFF offers a two-semester program anchored by faculty mentorship and featuring weekly seminars and workshops. AFF events are free and open to everyone in the Texas A&M University academic community. Participants may choose to attend a few events or enough to complete requirements for the Academy for Future Faculty Fellow certificate. New fellows are recognized at our annual banquet in April.
While the AFF serves as a supplement to research-oriented programs by assisting graduate students and post-docs with the teaching components of their career preparation, it is not teaching assistant training per se. Instead, the AFF provides broader benefits applicable to all graduate students and post-docs, whether currently teaching or preparing for teaching in the future.
These benefits include:
Opportunity to learn from a diverse pool of professors known for excellence in teaching.
Mentorship in the area of teaching in higher education environments
Exploration of career paths.
Developments of teaching portfolio materials for use in academic job searches.
Opportunity to earn a certificate of completion with designation as a AFF Fellow
Advanced professional development opportunities for AFF Fellows, including: opportunity to earn the Senior Fellow Certificate, leadership opportunities, research projects, and participate in forums or learning communities on college teaching
Additionally, the AFF workshops are designed as stand-alone sessions for interested graduate students and post-doctorates.