Leadership Programs

Leadership education initiatives in CALS grew out of the efforts of CALS undergraduate students. In 2003 the officers of the CALS Student Council requested that the College develop a leadership program for students. Since that time faculty and staff in the College, working with the Student Council, have developed a one-credit fall-semester leadership seminar, sponsored winter leadership retreats, and obtained a USDA grant to train groups of students to facilitate workshops on leadership topics.

Leadership education is an important component of students’ overall development and career preparation. Below describe the opportunities CALS students have to learn about, and practice, leadership.

USDA Challenge Grant for Leadership Education
Is your student organization interested in learning about leadership? The Leadership In Action Curriculum can be used to help your group’s members gain valuable leadership skills.

This curriculum was designed for university students through a USDA Challenge Grant awarded to the University of Wisconsin-Madison, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, and Purdue University. The grant allowed 30 students from each institution to participate in an intensive leadership education.

Campus Leadership Certificate

Since its creation in 2002, UW-Madison offers a Leadership Certificate. This program is designed for student leaders who excel in their leadership roles both inside and outside the classroom.

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Leadership Retreat
The College of Agricultural and Life Sciences Student Council and the Academic Affairs Office collaborate for the CALS Leadership Retreat. This retreat is designed to be a fun and interactive way to consider what leadership is, who you are as a leader, and what affect you can have based on your strengths and skills. The retreat uses activities and group discussions to stimulate your thoughts about the program topics. Students will meet others from across the various CALS majors and have a good time building new skills.

The leadership retreat is open to all CALS students. Announcements about participating in the retreat are made in November of each year.

Leadership Seminar
Become a better leader through the CALS Leadership Seminar (Interdisciplinary 312).

The Leadership Seminar is an eight week one-credit course designed to expose students to the content and ideas that are central to developing leadership skills. Students learn about leadership through readings, guest lecturers, class discussions, and self-reflection. This is an excellent course for any student interested in developing leadership skills.

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Objectives of the Leadership Seminar:

  • Describe various leadership philosophies and develop your own perspectives on leadership
  • Gain self-awareness of your current leadership competencies and your areas for growth
  • Develop ideas for analyzing and responding to ethical issues
  • Gain an understanding of organizational and group dynamics
  • Identify and apply the behaviors and skills for effectively managing and leading organizations and communities