Course Syllabus

UFL FES is trying a different format for this course - co-instructors and instructors will be alternating teaching this course, so the listed link is Chief Horvath's bio and information. My information will be below that. Don't be confused!

Instructor Introductory Video:



Leadership & Ethics

Course & Section: FES 4023

Credit Hours: 3

Summer 2022


There will be mandatory online sessions in small group discussions



Chief Cheryl Horvath is a 29-year veteran of the fire service, presently serving as the Fire Chief for Tubac Fire District in Santa Cruz County, Arizona. She has been in the fire service since 1992, beginning as a full-time firefighter in Illinois, where she also served as union president for four years and as a field instructor for the Illinois Fire Service Institute. Chief Horvath moved to the Tucson, Arizona area in 2006, working as a chief officer at Northwest Fire District, Mountain Vista Fire District, and Golder Ranch Fire District, prior to her current position. Chief Horvath holds a master’s degree in Public Administration from Anna Maria College and a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Illinois. In July 2016, Chief Horvath received the Chief Fire Officer Designation from the Center for Public Safety Excellence.


Dr. Mitterer has worked in EMS for over 30 years as an EMT and Paramedic, Operations Chief, and educator. He has earned a Master’s Degree in Management from Penn State University’s Smeal Business College, a nursing degree from Excelsior University, a Bachelor of Science in nursing from Penn State University and has earned the designation as a Certified Safety Professional (CSP), and Associate in Risk Management (ARM). He earned his Ph.D. in Leadership and Organizational change from Walden University.

As a member of the faculty for Western Governor's University he guides adult students through their course of study in Finance, Research and Statistics, Technology Application, and Risk Management. Dr. Mitterer previously taught for the Pa College of Health Sciences and was a Faculty Advisor for EMS at Franklin & Marshall College. He taught as an Adjunct Professor for Lebanon Valley College’ master’s program, Immaculata College where he taught; Management, Strategic Planning, Human Resources and Research, and Harrisburg Area Community College where he instructed in the Paramedic program. As a nationally recognized speaker and writer, Dr. Mitterer challenges audiences to think creatively about EMS topics.

Professional affiliations include; American Society of Safety Engineers, American College of Healthcare Executives, National Association of EMS Educators, National Association of EMTs and the Institute for Behavioral and Applied Management.


Office Hours: Students may request meetings as needed.

Course Website:

Course Communications: Each semester students have many questions regarding course content and procedures. Questions pertaining to the good of all should be posted in the discussion board. Any question that is personal in nature should be sent to me through my email address or the Canvas mail tool. Under Florida law, any written communication created or received through the University of Florida is subject to disclosure to the public and the media, upon request, unless otherwise exempt. If you do not want your message or email address released in response to a public records request, do not send electronic mail to this address.  Instead, contact me by phone. Urgent messages can be sent through email.

Required or REcommended Textbooks: Course materials will be available in the Course Reserves section of the class and posted in each module. It is imperative that each student have a laptop or desktop computer to access UFL Course Reserves.

Course Description: The role of agency leadership and its impact on the continuing professionalization of the fire and emergency services. This course examines traditional and evolving definitions, practices and skills in leadership behavior, including group discussions of ethics, teamwork, organizational behavior, and leadership.

Prerequisite Knowledge and Skills:  None

How This Course Relates to the Student Learning Outcomes in the fire and emergency services management program:  By the end of this course, students will:

  1. Identify and evaluate organizational problems associated with fire and emergency services (SLO1).
  2. Demonstrate effective leadership behavior and skills in fire and emergency services (SLO4).
  3. Demonstrate strong verbal and written communications skills for leadership in fire and emergency services (SLO6).

Instructional Methods: The course is designed for individual and group interactivity. The course will have multiple formats: individual learning, group learning projects, and discussion. The course design is centered around six focus areas and their respective assignments. Each module will require readings and group online discussions assignments that will help the student learn the information. The course also includes a final group project and individual writing assignment.

Teaching Philosophy:  Students should demonstrate a working knowledge of the subject. An orientation video for use of library resources will provide you with valuable information for completing your assignments. You need to be creative when you complete your assignments but maintain a professional appearance of your work. Your work needs to be complete and in such a manner that someone can pick up your document and understand what you are trying to convey. And most importantly, your work needs to be supported with research and cited properly in APA format. A good resource regarding APA format is the University of Purdue Online Writing Lab,

Course Policies:

Attendance Policy:    The course is designed in module format. You should check the site at least once a week. You are required to complete the assignments including discussion questions within the time period designated on the module. There may be meetings set up throughout the course. Requirements for class attendance and make-up exams, assignments, and other work in this course are consistent with university policies that can be found in the on-line catalog at: https//catalog@ufl,edu/ugrad/current/regulations/info/attendance.aspx.

ASSIGNMENTS & DISCUSSIONS:  All assignments and discussions have a due date. Please be sure to check the dates and times they are due in each module. All due dates are set in order to provide consistency with the discussions and assignment submission. Each module will be opened early so you have time to read the material, formulate and answer discussions and finish and submit the assignment. Each discussion and assignment will be closed one week after the due date.

Quiz/Exam DAtes/Policies:  There are final group and individual projects for this course. There are no exams or quizzes.

Make-up Policy:  Students will be assigned to groups for most of the course work and must work within their groups to complete assignments. Students must contact me if you are going to be late on any written assignment to receive credit.

Assignment Policy:  All assignments have a due date. Please be sure to check the date and time it is due in each module.

Course Technology:  Class meetings, via Zoom, will require a web camera and mic/audio. If you are not able to use a web camera you will need to at least provide audio/mic. You can call in on a phone also. The UF Help Desk is also available for online students. Please be sure to review all available UFL online resources for properly installing Zoom on your computer and do not wait until the last minute to take care of this. It is important that you are very familiar with Zoom and also how to record your meetings.

  • Click here for the UFL Zoom sign in:
  • (352) 392-HELP - select option 2

Online course evaluation: Student Evaluations

Students are expected to provide professional and respectful feedback on the quality of instruction in this course by completing course evaluations online via GatorEvals. Guidance on how to give feedback in a professional and respectful manner is available at Students will be notified when the evaluation period opens and can complete evaluations through the email they receive from GatorEvals, in their Canvas course menu under GatorEvals, or via Summaries of course evaluation results are available to students at

UF Policies:

University Policy on Accommodating Students with Disabilities: Students with disabilities requesting accommodations should first register with the Disability Resource Center (352-392-8565, ) by providing appropriate documentation.  Once registered, students will receive an accommodation letter which must be presented to the instructor when requesting accommodation.  Students with disabilities should follow this procedure as early as possible in the semester.

University Policy on Academic Conduct:  UF students are bound by The Honor Pledge which states, “We, the members of the University of Florida community, pledge to hold ourselves and our peers to the highest standards of honesty and integrity by abiding by the Honor Code.  On all work submitted for credit by students at the University of Florida, the following pledge is either required or implied: "On my honor, I have neither given nor received unauthorized aid in doing this assignment."  The Honor Code ( specifies a number of behaviors that are in violation of this code and the possible sanctions.  Furthermore, you are obligated to report any condition that facilitates academic misconduct to appropriate personnel.  If you have any questions or concerns, please consult with the instructor or TAs in this class.

Class Demeanor or Netiquette: All members of the class are expected to follow rules of common courtesy in all email messages, threaded discussions and chats. 

Getting Help:

For issues with technical difficulties for Canvas, please contact the UF Help Desk at:

  • (352) 392-HELP (4357)
  • Walk-in: HUB 132

Any requests for make-ups due to technical issues MUST be accompanied by the ticket number received from the Help Desk when the problem was reported to them. The ticket number will document the time and date of the problem. You MUST e-mail your instructor within 24 hours of the technical difficulty if you wish to request a make-up.

Other resources are available at for:

  • Counseling and Wellness resources
  • Disability resources
  • Resources for handling student concerns and complaints
  • Library Help Desk support

(Required) Should you have any complaints with your experience in this course please visit to submit a complaint.

Grading Policies:

Methods by which students will be evaluated and their grade determined

Assignments up to 48 hours late will receive a 10% deduction in grade. Assignments more than 48 hours but less than 30 days late will receive a 20% deduction in their grade. Assignments more than 30 days late but submitted during the semester will receive a 50% deduction in grade.

Participation in group assignments is required. If a student does not participate in a group assignment there will be zero points awarded.

Please note that any student who has less than 75% of their work complete for the semester cannot earn an “I” contract. If you have 75% of the work complete, you can propose an I contract to the instructor.

It is your responsibility to keep your instructor informed at all times. The instructor does have the right under extenuating circumstances with proper notification to assist the student by extending the above time requirements.

Information on current UF grading policies for assigning grade points:


Points or percentage

Group Discussion Participation

120 Points

Written Assignments (2)

50 Points

Final Group Project

100 Points

Final Individual Project

100 Points

Grading Scale:

A   = 93.0 to 100%     C   = 73.0 to 76.9
A-  = 90.0 to 92.9       C-  = 70.0 to 72.9
B+ = 87.0 to 89.9       D+ = 67.0 to 69.9
B   = 83.0 to 86.9       D   = 63.0 to 66.9
B-  = 80.0 to 82.9       D-  = 60.0 to 62.9
C+ = 77.0 to 79.9       F   = below 60  

Passing Grade












Grade Points












Course Schedule:

Critical Dates: Midterm Assignment: Draft outline with bibliography is due October 25. The final group and individual projects are due November 22 and December 6.

A Weekly Schedule of Topics and ASsignments:




May 9

Introductions, Syllabus, Library Orientation

Post a video introduction, review syllabus, watch library orientation video

May 16

Authentic Leadership

Assigned reading and written assignment

May 23


Assigned reading and group Project Work

June 6


Assigned reading and group Project Work

June 13

Serving a Purpose

Assigned Reading and Group Project Work

June 20

Midterm Assignment Due

Draft outline of final individual paper with annotated bibliography

June 27

Organizational Behavior

Assigned Reading and Group Project Work

July 11

Implicit Bias

Assigned Reading and Group Project Work

July 18

Model Leader

Group Project Work

August 2

Final Projects Due


Disclaimer: This syllabus represents my current plans and objectives.  As we go through the semester, those plans may need to change to enhance the class learning opportunity.  Such changes, communicated clearly, are not unusual and should be expected.