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A Culture of Care >> Read Smith’s plans for the fall 2021 semester.

Courses & Cohort Programs

Cohort program group shot of students engaged in a project in the Campus Center
For students interested in growing their collaborative leadership skills at a deeper level, the Wurtele Center offers cohort programs that bring together a small community of learners that develop into student leaders. These programs engage students in exploring their individual strengths, growth areas, and evolving sense of purpose (ME), help them build their capacity to work with others in a team and community (WE), and assist them as they seek to make positive change (IMPACT). 

LEAD Scholars and LEAD Corps

Students organizing post-its on the wall as part of a LEAD Scholars Program workshop

Students explore the intersections of identity and leadership. 

The Leaders for Equity-Centered and Action-Based Design (LEAD) Scholars Program is a one-year cohort program that focuses on building leadership capacity through both examining leadership through a social justice lens and learning skills of facilitation and design for social change. The Wurtele Center for Leadership and the Office for Equity and Inclusion are partnering to create a program with the mission of equipping students with the skills to apply equity-centered design to address some of our greatest social inequities. A small cohort of students will explore who they are as leaders, how their social identities impact their leadership, how to develop deep and meaningful relationships with one another, as well as learn the processes of design and facilitation to serve as references and consultants to the greater campus community.

After year one, scholars have the opportunity to apply to be a member of the LEAD Corps. Selected corps members will engage with the community to offer themselves as solution and experience designers. They’ll learn and practice deeper facilitative leadership strategies such as deep listening, radical collaboration, emergent strategy and liberatory design. As solution designers they will work to support community members in creating their own solutions to problems arising in such communities as clubs, organizations and teams. As experience designers they will create and offer facilitated conversations and workshops about social justice and lead programs in houses and communities around campus.

How to Get Involved

Both LEAD Scholars and LEAD Corps will be selected through an application process. Once LEAD Scholars are selected, they will register for the two LEAD-affiliated courses: IDP 134 (fall term) and IDP 135 (spring term). NOTE: These courses are only open to students selected as LEAD Scholars and require permission of the instructors (Annie DelBusto Cohen and Toby Davis).

Important Dates
Date Description
March 17, 2021 Virtual Info Session
March 26, 2021 Virtual Info Session
April 2, 2021 Applications Due by Midnight EST
April 19, 2021 Virtual Group Process
April 21, 2021 Interviews
April 30, 2021 Offers Extended
May 3, 2021 Confirmations needed
May 14, 2021 Virtual mini retreat

Application Materials

For students interested in applying to the LEAD Scholars Program:

For faculty and staff who would like to nominate a student who they feel would be an excellent fit for the LEAD Scholars Program:

All applications must include a recommendation. That form can be found here:

Phoebe Reese Lewis Leadership Program

The Phoebe Reese Lewis Leadership Program is an intensive cohort program developing the foundations of emotionally intelligent, resilient leadership: self-awareness, courage, purpose and community. Lewis Leaders convene to learn skills in each of these domains throughout the academic year. During an interterm leadership intensive, students travel to New York City to continue skill building, connect personally with global change makers and discover one of the most extraordinary cities on the planet. The skills students build as Lewis Leaders are foundational to becoming the kind of leader who is able to engage others in inclusive, collaborative change-making efforts.

Special Note: Due to travel restrictions and the inability to bring the cohort together in person, the Lewis Leadership program will not be running during the 2020–21 academic year.

Students visiting NYC as part of the Lewis Leadership Program

Lewis Leaders in front of the Vessel in New York City.