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Released April 4, 2005



Long BeachThe Jack and Patti Phillips Workplace Learning and Performance Institute at The University of Southern Mississippi hosted its second annual advisory council meeting March 20-21 at the Gulf Park campus in Long Beach.

The WLPI is a research and outreach center for best practices in workplace learning and performance. Under the direction of Dr. Cyndi Gaudet, associate professor of workforce training and development, the WLPI provides leadership to regional, national and international organizations seeking to achieve work-related competence through effective workplace learning.

The second WLPI Advisory Council seats a panel of experts from public and private organizations, many of whom are world-renowned in the field of human capital development. The council members traveled from across the nation to provide guidance to the WLPI in its academic and research efforts.

During the meeting, council members provided feedback that will be used to enhance current WLPI programs and to strategically align the human development needs of today's leading industries with the goals of the WLPI. For example, council members expressed an interest in engaging in a dynamic partnership with the WLPI to integrate their expertise and international contacts with the institute.

As a creator and disseminator of 21st-century workforce models, the WLPI emphasizes solutions that are technology-enabled. A good example of that commitment to technology-enabled solutions is the use of NASA's e-SPACE Collaboratory for a more effective and efficient strategic planning session with council members.

The e-SPACE Collaboratory is a portable system that stands for "electronic-Strategic Planning and Consensus Engagement." It utilizes GroupSystems, a specialized computer software system designed for collaborative work groups that has produced measurable productivity gains for major corporations in recent years. Software for electronic meetings can help reduce the time required for managers to complete complex projects by 90 percent. The strength of using this format is that participants are able to comment anonymously over networked computers, encouraging equal participation by all individuals during the session. The format also provides instant access to information and a structure for processing decisions and evaluating alternatives.

According to Dr. Heather Annulis, WLPI assistant director, the technology enabled the WLPI to bring together a diversity of thoughts and ideas from multiple industries and private and public organizations in a short amount of time.

Ken Malone, chief operating officer of the Southern Miss Gulf Park campus, told council members that the WLPI, housed in the Department of Economic and Workforce Development, is very important to the university. "The Workplace Learning and Performance Institute has a unique position as a growing niche program, complemented by its goal to become a globally recognized institute for best practices of workplace learning and performance," Malone said.

Malone added that the WLPI, along with the Department of Economic and Workforce Development at Southern Miss, is committed to bringing national recognition to the university and state by leading the field of academic and applied growth.

The 2005 advisory council members are

Jack Phillips, world-renowned expert on measurement and evaluation and chairman of the ROI Institute Inc.

Patti Phillips, president and CEO of the ROI Institute Inc.

Frank Ashby, consultant for the Leadership Capital Group

Mark McLean, national director of human resources at Deloitte & Touche

David Powe, associate vice chancellor for institutional affairs at the University of Mississippi Medical Center

Dexter Holloway, director for the Mississippi State Board for Community and Junior Colleges

Dave Schweppe, global HSE training coordinator for human resource development at Halliburton

Larry Crane, director of workforce training, development and diversity at Northrop Grumman Ship Systems

Randy Parker, director of Effective Workforce Solutions

Sandra Bernard Dugas, president and CEO of STA Inc.

Bruce Waguespack, president and performance consultant of Potential Unlimited, LLC

Shirley Legaux, consulting and human resource development with In Touch

Amy Eifling, vice president of the international human resource development firm Aspire Inc.

Lesley Lloyd, assistant state personnel director at the Mississippi State Personnel Board Office of Training

Maureen Phillips, manager of technical training at the Southern Company

Jo Clem, executive director of training and education for ATX Technologies

Shannon Campbell, director of the Career Resource Center at Jones County Junior College

Amanda Ford, president of Multi Staffing Services

The Department of Economic and Workforce Development academic offerings include an executive format master's program in workforce training and development, a training and development certificate program, and research support for the international development doctoral program.

WLPI research includes initiatives such as the Department of Labor-sponsored Geospatial Technology Apprenticeship Program (GTAP), the Geospatial Technology Competency Model for NASA's National Workforce Development Education and Training Initiative, the NASA-sponsored Geospatial Workforce Development Center (GeoWDC), and return-on-investment accountability for training and human resource development programs.

For more information on the WLPI, call (601) 266-5254 or visit


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April 19, 2005 12:47 PM