Welcome Group Members! My name is Darlene Groomes and I am very pleased to facilitate the Reading Groups. I hope that we can have a truly interactive process and experience that will strengthen our participation in the national Summit Group.
Participation in the Summit Reading Groups is one element of professional development that the Summit Group offers to its members. These Reading Groups strive to (1) offer information on the process behind program evaluation, quality improvement, and performance management; (2) provide an opportunity to build a professional library and reference base; (3) create conversations about innovative ways to face day-to-day concerns or challenges for the improvement of state VR agencies; and (4) develop tools, examples, and/or recommendations that members can take into their organization for possible implementation.
The reading groups are comprised of interested individuals who want to read a book that is relevant to key issues facing Vocational Rehabilitation, and exchange personal and professional input, feedback, and learning content. Three reading group sessions have been completed over two years, and the Summit Reading Group is excited by the interest and focused sharing of resources and information. The first group read Patton's book entitled: Utilization-Focused Evaluation (2008, Fourth Edition). The second reading group discussed Sylvia and Sylvia's Program Planning and Evaluation for the Public Manager (2004, 3rd edition). The third reading group read and presented on Stephen Few's Information Dashboard Design: The Effective Visual Communication of Data (2006).
At the San Antonio Summit this past September, the 3rd Reading Group presented their learned outcomes and impressions on performance dashboard development. This specific experience of generating awareness and providing training was new, productive, and served as a model for future training and development opportunities from the Reading Groups. The 4th Reading Group will begin on November 16, 2012 and will engage monthly through September, 2013. The fourth reading group will read Scholtes' book, The Leader's Handbook: Making Things Happen, Getting Things Done (1998).
All activities will occur at this site, such as Resource Posting, Forum Discussions, and Chat Sessions. I would like to express thanks to Utah State University for hosting the reading groups on the National Clearinghouse of Rehabilitation Training Materials website. As we mainly communicate through teleconferences to exchange our thoughts and share our reactions to the book content, I also wish to thank Dr. Scott Sabella and Mr. Matthew Markve for providing access to the conferencing system through the University of Northern Colorado.
Let’s get started!