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Joe Raelin recently published the feature article for The Academic Workplace, the main newsletter of the New England Resource Center for Higher Education. In his article, “Learning a New Kind of Leadership for the Academic Workplace,” he argues that academic institutions, facing an increasingly complex environment, will need to find a way to unlock the capacity of all to contribute, even the professoriate. No one top administrator will possess a solution for each problem across the university, be it an information outage, a residential crisis, or a precipitous drop in application. We will need responsive institutions that can empower anyone who is capable and who has the willingness to assume leadership in the moment in his/her relationships with peers, team members, parents, community organizations, and other university partners. Dr. Raelin argues that creating this new practice of leadership will require a work-based form of learning in which theory can be integrated with practice and knowledge integrated with experience. It will also require a collective consciousness and reflection in which all stakeholders become partners in creating and expanding the sources of knowledge.



POE 2005 CONFERENCE —The Center for Work and Learning and the Provost's Office hosted the Third Annual Conference on Practice-Oriented Education from June 14-17, 2005. The conference was held in conjunction with the World Association of Cooperative Education (WACE) World Congress. For more information on WACE, please visit their website at

To consult the main papers given at the Conference, please visit the links posted here. We are also listing here some of the roundtables presented:




POE 2003 CONFERENCE — From April 10-12, 2003, the Office of the Provost and the Center for Work and Learning sponsored the 2nd International POE Conference, "Building an Inclusive Model for Integrating Learning and Work," held at Northeastern University.

Please follow these links to view materials from the conferece:

The conference brochure (PDF)
Reports from the panel sessions

Summary of the culminating, world café event
Video streaming excerpts from the welcoming remarks and keynote speakers



Members of the POE community at Northeastern regularly participate in events that disseminate knowledge about POE practices. Below are some recent and upcoming events that feature members of our community.

Student Guided Peer Mentoring Pilot – Vice President Jim Stellar, Center Senior Research Fellow, Rick Porter, and Joe Raelin are planning to begin a pilot program to test how students on co-op can contribute to each other’s learning and performance in the workplace.

The proposed model maximizes the role of upperclass or graduate students as guides to learning dialogues with underclass students. The guides will be trained and participate in a 4-credit course co-taught by Joe Raelin and Rick Porter. The model also provides for a co-op cordinator to serve as a consultant to the guides. Plans call for the student guides to facilitate an ongoing, online dialogue of two groups of ten students on co-op with once-a-month face-to-face meetings. Academic faculty are available for consultation as opportunities arise to link classroom learning with real-world experience. The pilot hopes to recruit student participants who will be on their first co-op. We believe this will provide a good opportunity for maximum student impact.

The Rashomon Dialogue - The 2004 POE faculty fellows will be presenting a special interest session, called, “The Rashomon Dialogue: An Interdisciplinary Community of Practice Dedicated to Integrative Teaching, Learning, and Scholarship,” at the upcoming Third International Conference on Practice-Oriented Education to be held at Northeastern on June 15, 2005. The fellows originally came together to dialogue about the critical processes and outcomes of practice-oriented education within their own disciplines. Over time, they formed a community of practice that produced both individual and collective knowledge. The session will demonstrate, using the fishbowl method, an actual trans-disciplinary COP dialogue in action.

The Debate on Intentional Work-Integrated Learning - Recent scholarship on contextualized or situated learning suggests that intentional learning may be difficult to accomplish, if not impossible, unless students:

a) supplement their classroom education with real-world experience, and
b) learn from their real-world experience by reflecting in-action within a safe facilitated environment in the company of trusted peers.

Yet, this very scholarship is often not heeded in the world of higher education due to the belief by some classic scholars that work experience should be reserved to a point in one’s life after one has mastered the classics and historical traditions of liberal education.

At a session to be held at the World Congress of the World Association of Cooperative Education, to be held at Northeastern on November 16, two teams, made up of Dean Jim Stellar and Professor Rick Porter vs. Professors Susan Setta and Joe Raelin, will debate this question and invite audience reaction.



If you have an event to submit to this page, please e-mail Joe Raelin at:

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