Interest in the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences (CALS) leadership education initiatives is robust and growing. CALS seeks to enhance the leadership capacity of all students in the College through vehicles such as the Leadership Certificate, a leadership seminar, a leadership retreat, and collaborative conferences with other Big Ten universities.
Just one year after the inception of the CALS Leadership Certificate, interest among students, and support from faculty and staff are strong. Fifty-one students have enrolled in the Leadership Certificate, with 20 percent of the students enrolling in fall 2006. Additionally, 30 faculty and staff have expressed interest in mentoring students.
“Achieving the leadership certificate signifies not only a serious commitment to leadership, but an intentional and thoughtful approach to understanding what it means to lead. The program has strong support from students, faculty and College administration. We encourage as many students as possible to participate,” says Robert O. Ray, Ph.D., Associate Dean and Professor, Undergraduate Programs and Services.
John Alaniz, a student, remarked the Certificate, “Gives you a framework where you can analyze and reflect on things and you have an amazingly fun and revealing time as you do it with people who really care about you. They offer an amazing amount of experience that I have found invaluable.”While participation in Certificate mentoring among faculty and staff is rising, the continued growth in student demand for the program is creating a need for additional mentors.
“Our students are tremendously gifted and creative and this comes through in their fulfillment of the CALS Leadership Certificate. As a mentor, I enjoy this opportunity for me to enhance my own leadership journey; but, I most enjoy seeing the impact our students have on their peers, student organizations, internships and research labs. Our students make a difference,” says Jean Petersen, Certificate mentor and senior student services coordinator, CALS.
Along with the formal Leadership Certificate, enrollment in the leadership seminar and nominations for the leadership retreat are higher than in previous years. The CALS leadership initiatives provide an opportunity for students to gain leadership experience and build their leadership skills. The CALS leadership education programs are benefiting students.
Staff and faculty interested in mentoring students in the Leadership
Certificate Program should contact John Klatt by phone: 608-262-4618
or visit the leadership web site: