Professional & Organizational Development

How to take a POD course

POD offers a variety of classes each quarter for UW staff, faculty, and leaders, along with other training such as self-paced online courses and special events (learn about our different class formats with the POD Class Format Guide (PDF)). In addition, we provide a variety of tools and resources for your professional development.

If you’ve never taken a POD offering before, there are a few things you should know. Start by reviewing the topics below and contact us if you have any other questions.

Find a course

POD offers dozens of in-person and online courses designed to aid in the professional development of UW staff. Courses cover a range of topics including:

  • Communications
  • Diversity
  • Fiscal procedures and management
  • Human resources administration
  • Personal and professional growth
  • Planning and productivity
  • Supervision and leadership

Some of these courses are offered as part of POD’s Certificate Program, which includes the Administrative Excellence, HR Administration, and Supervisory Skills certificates.

Start your search now by viewing the POD course catalog. Once you find a course, your next step is to talk with your supervisor and get approval.

Get approved

In most cases, you’ll need approval from your supervisor to take a POD class. Your supervisor approves your release time, which allows you to take the class during normal working hours. Your supervisor (or budget coordinator) also provides approval to pay class fees.

Alternatively, you can take a POD class on your own time. You also have the option to pay for any POD offering using your own money.

Create a training action plan

Completing the training action plan may help you obtain your supervisor’s approval to take a class. Download the Training Action Plan (PDF).

To complete your training plan, find a course that will help you build job skills, work more effectively, or address performance issues. List your goals/reasons for taking the course, being as specific as possible. For example:

  • To improve the quality of my letters and emails
  • To learn how to access and run financial reports
  • To build my customer service skills
  • To plan more effective meetings
  • To develop better working relationships

Alternatively, your supervisor might complete the Training Action Plan (PDF) to recommend or require training for you.

Register and pay

Register for a class using our online course catalog.

As a primarily self-sustaining unit, POD must charge fees for many of its offerings.

Once you’ve found a class and have received approval from your supervisor, go online and register. To pay for the class, you’ll need valid payment worktags. Ask your supervisor or budget coordinator for this information. You can also pay using credit card, cash, or check, but there is a 15.6 percent overhead charge for doing so.

Registering online is simple, and you’ll know right away if a class is already full. However, you can also register by filling out a paper form and sending it to us. Once we process the form, we’ll email you an enrollment confirmation. If the class is full, we’ll send you an email letting you know that you’re on the waitlist. Download the POD Course Registration Form (PDF).

Attend your class

Online classes are held via Zoom. You’ll receive a Zoom link via email before the first session of your class.

In-person classes are typically held at Roosevelt Commons East building, which is a few blocks west of campus. However, some offerings are held elsewhere. Check your confirmation email for the location.

Make the most of your training

Here are a few tips for a successful training:

  • Make sure you complete any pre-work or assessments on time.
  • Plan to spend class time engaged in the training.
  • Be aware that most of our classes have interactive components, including group discussions and activities. Class participants are asked to keep all information shared in class confidential.
  • In-person classes:
    • Feeling uncomfortable, too hot, or too cold will detract from your experience. Wear comfortable clothing and dress in layers.
    • Typically, coffee, hot and cold water, and tea are provided in our hospitality room along with access to a microwave and mini-fridge.
After attending a class

Once you’ve completed your class or event, consider meeting with your supervisor to follow up. This is a good time to discuss your job goals, how the skills learned during your POD training will help achieve those goals, and future opportunities for continued skill-building and professional development.

Plan for the future

Your professional development depends on the actions you take over the course of your career. Wherever your career path may lead, it’s best to make a plan.