Program Director and Associate Professor of Communication College of Arts and Sciences
Leilani Carver-Madalon, PhD, is the program director for communication programs at Maryville University. She also serves as an associate professor of communication specializing in strategic communication, marketing communication, and leadership. Before entering academia, Carver-Madalon worked for eight years in technology training and development, project management and consulting.
Carver-Madalon also lived and worked in Jilin City, China, teaching and creating curriculum for the New Horizon International Institute. This experience prompted her to pursue her master’s degree in communication, with dual emphases in intercultural communication and organizational communication. In addition to her experience in China, she taught university courses in England, France, Italy, Switzerland, Australia, Vietnam and Cambodia and is certified through the Hofstede International Institute in Organisational Culture.
From 2012 to 2018, Carver-Madalon served as the director of Maryville’s graduate program in Strategic Communication and Leadership but was inspired to change her focus to women’s leadership research. She continues to direct all public speaking courses at Maryville and develops and teaches graduate and undergraduate courses for both online and traditional academic programs. As a researcher and author, Carver-Madalon has lived, taught and traveled around the world to become a respected thought leader in innovation, empowerment, culture, persuasion and leadership. Her expertise has been featured in various media outlets. In 2021, she resumes the Program Director role for the Bachelor’s in Communication and Master’s in Strategic Communication and Leadership.
As a professor, Carver-Madalon empowers students to become leaders through experiential learning opportunities such as short-term study abroad programs and practical assignments which include real clients. She developed and launched the women’s leadership mentorship program at Maryville University, a program involving approximately 200 mentors and mentees annually. The program teaches professional skills like strategic risk-taking, confidence building, salary negotiation, public speaking and career advancement.
Carver-Madalon strongly advocates for students to explore their interests and values during their studies, encouraging informational interviews, job shadowing and internships to learn more about creating a career — and a life — they love. She believes it is impossible to teach a student everything they need to know, but it is essential to teach them how to learn and to inspire a passion for lifelong learning. As Greek essayist, Plutarch wrote, “The mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be lit.”
Notable Publications and Placements:
Carver-Madalon is currently authoring a book on women’s leadership best practices. Findings are from a multitude of interviews with highly successful women in the United States and across Europe. The goal is to share strategies, advice and stories to help inspire and instruct rising leaders to achieve a more equitable workplace.