MPA Faculty Paul Dann

Headshot of Paul Dann, MPA Professor at the Carsey School

"I love helping people and organizations become more effective in fulfilling their own vision and mission in life."

      ~Paul Dann

What is your current research/professional interest? My primary interests lie in the areas of leadership, leadership and organizational development and organizational culture.
In the course(s) that you teach, what are the typical aspects of the student’s coursework you evaluate and what weighting do you give each aspect? I appreciate student engagement and so weigh participation in discussion boards and synchronous session accordingly. I generally don't include quizzes preferring instead to have students write about what they are learning and how what they are learning applies to their practice. I believe it's very important to take theory and use it to drive effective practice. A typical weighting would be 40% discussion boards and synchronous sessions. 30% for two short papers and 30% for a final project/paper
What drove you to teaching? I believe that we are all life long learners and I've found joy in helping others develop while continuing my own learning experience.
What or who inspires you? I have had the honor of having a few outstanding professors in my own experience as a student. These individuals helped me to realize the importance of an excellent teacher and as a result I have tried to emulate their gift for helping people to learn and grow.
When you were a student, what is one thing you wish you had known? When I was a student I often focused on the destination. I think I've come to appreciate the importance of the journey. Looking back I wish I was more aware of the fact that it is really about the journey that one embarks on as they develop as a learner.
What advice do you have for your students? Take time to enjoy the journey. Having the opportunity to learn and grow is both and honor and a privilege that should be pursued to the fullest extent.
What is the most recent book you read? The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
How do you spend your free time? I'm a blues musician and enjoy playing my guitar and serving as the front man for a regional blues band. I've also been busy writing my second book through Wiley publishers titled, "Managing and Leading Nonprofit Organizations; A Framework for Success."
What is your greatest passion – professional or personal? I love helping people and organizations become more effective in fulfilling their own vision and mission in life.