Contact Leigh at Leigh@ksu.edu.
Leigh Cunningham earned an Associate degree from Cloud County Community College and a Bachelors in Human Services / Interdisciplinary Social Science from Upper Iowa University. She began her career in education working with pre-schoolers, but in the early 1990s decided to make the leap to Higher Ed, and thus that decade found her completing graduate degrees in Higher Education Administration (Fort Hays State University) and Educational Psychology (Capella University).
In the mid-'90s, Leigh joined Barton County Community College as a social/behavioral science faculty member. Worldview perspective (aka 'multicultural awareness') and the emerging topic of 'anytime, anyplace' learning were Leigh's primary focal points in her graduate programs, and these interests manifested further in her work at the community college. During her five years with BCCC, Leigh developed a classroom course in Cultural Awareness, which she eventually modified for the needs of distance learning students in BCCC's fledgling BARTONline program. In her final full-time year at Barton, Leigh served as BARTONline Coordinator. She also served as lead academic advisor for BCCC's distance learning students, as well as advisor for on-campus learners.
Leigh found that she was better-suited to the one-to-one interaction of her advising duties than to the larger classroom setting, and thus when a full-time Academic Advisor position opened up in the College of Arts & Sciences at Kansas State University in the summer of 2000, she applied for that position. She tremendously enjoyed her work there with undeclared students and interdisciplinary social science majors. During her five years with K-State A&S, she also served as Chair of the Interdisciplinary Social Science Advisors Committee and member of the 'Learning Anytime, Anyplace Partnership' (LAAP) Project Advisors Consultation Group, the Majors Fair committee, and the K-State Online Advisory Council. She also continued to teach the BARTONline Cross Cultural Awareness course during this period, and her thoughts on multicultural issues in advising were given voice in a NACADA Academic Advising Today article and Clearinghouse anchor piece.
Leigh has presented at NACADA Annual Conferences in the areas of advisor team-building, online advising, cultural worldview and identity development, and communication style. Her interest in worldview perspective remains high, and she is also currently investigating the development of digital literacy / wisdom.
Leigh joined the NACADA Executive Office in the spring of 2005 as Coordinator of Educational Programming, and she has greatly enjoying serving as the Managing Editor for the Association's quarterly e-Publication, Academic Advising Today, since then. In 2006, she became the Producer of NACADA's Webinar series and continues in this role, having produced over 80 Web Events and broadcast recordings. She also assists in the development of educational materials, such as Pocket Guides, for NACADA members and serves as Executive Office Liaison to the Professional Development Committee, Diversity Committee, Research Committee, and Emerging Leaders Program. In 2017, she served as Editor for the NACADA publications What is Academic Advising?: An Introduction to the Field and (with Teri Farr) the NACADA Academic Advising Core Competencies Guide.