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Leadership Education for University Students

Updated: Jul 8, 2021



Liberal Education and America’s Promise (LEAP) is a national advocacy, campus action, and research initiative that champions the importance of a twenty-first-century liberal education for individual student success. As a professor of Leadership Studies, I have truly enjoyed learning about the LEAP vision for college-level student leadership development and integrating their vision into my Leadership programming. LEAP has created essential learning outcomes student success in life, civil society, and work in the twenty-first century. Leadership for college students is a huge area of interest for me.


High-Impact Educational Practices


Engaging and challenging students through first-year programs, collaborative assignments, service learning, internships, diversity experiences, and cross-cultural projects helps our students achieve the LEAP essential learning outcomes. This is extremely important in terms of having a clear set of learning outcomes that we as professors are striving towards as we create our courses and activities in alignment with learning objectives.


Authentic Assessments


Using effective rubrics are an essential part of gauging whether students have developed the appropriate leadership capacities and are applying their learning to real-world scenarios. Many times individuals assume leadership cannot be measured, but this is simply untrue. In my UCF Foundations of Leadership course, I stress not only understanding the different theories of leadership, but determining what your own personal leadership philosophy is, how it will be implemented in your life, and how to assess the effectiveness of that implementation.


The Relational Leadership Model


One thing I love about leadership training for our university students is teaching them how the Relational Leadership Model and Social Change Model are ethics-driven and emphasize good values and standards. Our leadership curriculum is rooted in ethical values and the goal is to make a positive societal impact in relation to serving others.


UCF Student Leadership Development


UCF is committed to supporting student leaders who exhibit academic excellence and service. The LEAD Scholars Academy is a two-year academic leadership development program for first-year college students. I am so proud to work for the LEAD Scholars Academy, a fantastic leadership department that is dedicated to providing high-quality educational experiences and leadership opportunities to students across campus. LEAD Scholars advocates for diversity, equity, and inclusion, while supporting our students to become change agents in the local and global community.


As a professor of Leadership at the UCF LEAD Scholars Academy, I am so grateful I can contribute to students making a true difference in the world around them. With an experiential-learning focus, students are required to partake in service-learning in conjunction with leadership training in class. LEAD Scholars not only make a difference in UCF and Central Florida community, they make an impact across the world with thousands community service hours every year!

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