LEAD - A Certificate in Innovative Leadership


LEAD - A Certificate in Innovative Leadership

By: Quentin
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LEAD - A Certificate in Innovative Leadership


Wendy Norman
Student Life Educator

group activities

“The program allowed me to leverage my leadership by giving me concrete skills I can demonstrate to employers” – Terry Forst

What is the difference between being a formal leader and practicing effective leadership? How does leadership apply to your unique constellation of hopes, goals, past experiences and personality?    LEAD SFU offers students the opportunity to explore these questions through a Certificate in Innovative Leadership.  Students who successfully complete the program requirements are awarded a formal certificate.

The foundations of the certificate program were initially conceived and implemented by Chris Rogerson, who now works as the Assistant Director of Residence Life at SFU.  Committed to creating a comprehensive program with a ‘hands on’ component, Rogerson structured LEAD around three stages:

group discussion

“My experiences with LEAD have been extremely positive.  The most valuable part of the program is learning about ourselves, acknowledging our strengths and shortfalls, and of course sharing a similar experience with such different individuals.”  - Cathy Wong

1)     Leadership Knowledge (October): Participants attend a one day retreat, and three core workshops, in October, where they learn about basic leadership theory, complete and reflect upon self-assessment exercises and mingle with other participants.

2)    Leadership Skills (October – March): Program participants attend a series of additional workshops facilitated by leadership experts from a wide range of professional backgrounds.  Workshop topics range from specific skills, such as inclusive event planning and effective group process, to more general discussions around social responsibility, cultural understandings of leadership and leadership case studies.

3)    Leadership in Action (February – April):  Program participants work in groups on projects sponsored by organizations within SFU and the greater community.

group picture

“LEAD was a great way to meet like-minded people from a wide range of programs with a wide range of interests.  Also, the program helped me develop intention about my communication with others and how it relates to leadership” – Stephanie Werner

I  recently took on the role of Student Life Educator after teaching communication and leadership at Dalhousie University in Halifax. As the program enters its third year, I will continue to build on Rogerson's original vision. With a background in social anthropology, I am working on expanding workshop topics to include content on social justice and leadership, sustainability and leadership and how leadership intersects with gender, class and ethnicity. I'm busy lining up exciting projects for this year's program participants.

From a social perspective, the program offers students the opportunity to meet and network with other students who are exploring leadership development and with the workshop presenters.  The program’s initial ‘meet and greet’, the leadership retreat, and the mid-year get together all foster social interaction between program participants.  

To apply to the Certificate Program, go to: http://www.sfu.ca/studentlife/leadership/certificate.html

Posted on February 15, 2010