Do you have a question not answered below? Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Leadership Certificate is a structured program designed to provide students with a customized experience to help develop leadership skills. Certificate students select a Leadership Coach to partner with during the program and create a Leadership Portfolio documenting their leadership growth upon completion. The Certificate Program is grounded in the Illinois Philosophy of Leadership which states that "all students can exercise leadership" and a skills-based model of leadership development.
The Leadership Certificate Program is available to all students at the University of Illinois who are interested in making a commitment to develop and document their growth in the skills and attributes promoted by the Illinois Leadership® Initiative, regardless of their academic major. It is highly recommended you have 3-4 semesters left in your degree program in order to complete the certificate.
The Certificate Program is offered at no cost to all current Illinois students through the generous support and donations from corporate and private partners
The Illinois Philosophy of Leadership describes leadership development as a process that can only be learned and effectively applied over time. The Certificate Program intentionally allows participants to customize their leadership development experience in a self-paced and student-driven program so you determine how much time you invest in the process with your assigned Leadership Coach. For this reason, there is no set 'hours-per-week' requirement for the program because it is based on your personal individual completion timeline. However, it is highly recommended that students have at least 3-4 semesters left in their degree program in order to complete the Certificate.
The Leadership Certificate Program will make you a more effective leader through a customized experience, personalized coaching, and the development of many transferrable skills and attributes that can benefit you in your academic life, personal relationships, and future career success. Many students find that their leadership development is enhanced in many unexpected and valuable ways through their participation.
After you login on our website, click on "Certificate" from the menu. The first step to start on the Certificate is to attend an Orientation Workshop, which is available from the Certificate menu online. Once registered, you should receive an email confirmation. At the Orientation, you will learn more about the specific requirements and next steps to begin the Certificate Program.
Students can enroll at any time into the program after they attend an Orientation session by completing their Statement of Intent online during the specified enrollment period each semester. Students can also register to attend additional Certificate Workshops to support their progress in the Program. For a list of current available Certificate Workshops, click here.
Yes, graduate students are also welcome to enroll as long as they have the recommended minimum of 3-4 semesters left in their degree program. They will also need to make sure they can fit the extra two required courses in their schedule before they enroll in the Program.
Leadership Coaches are professionals from all areas and fields who volunteer to serve in the Program. You are able to be coached by a professor, staff member, or other professional. If you already know of a person you would like to be your leadership coach prior to your enrollment, you are welcome to ask them to serve as your coach. You may also want to print out or forward them our coach manual that outlines the responsibilities of a coach and more information about the Certificate Program
If you do not already have someone in mind as a Coach, once you enroll in the Certificate Program, you will have the opportunity to be paired by ILC staff with available coaches who are participating in the program. If you choose to be matched by our office, you will be able to share any coach preferences you may have when you submit your Statement of Intent.
You are expected to meet consistently with your Coach, but students and coaches have the flexibility to determine what works best for them. Some students meet as often as once a week with their coach. At a minimum, you are expected to meet with your coach at least 3-4 times per semester, and maintain a minimum level of contact even during the summer or semesters spent abroad.
In rare instances where coaches may move away or have other individual situations in which they can no longer serve as a coach, students are allowed to switch coaches. Otherwise, switching is not allowed once coaching relationships have been established. This increases the consistency of your experience in the program to maximize your leadership development.
There is no set structure to create a PDP — it is an opportunity for students to put their unique stamp on their leadership development! However, each PDP includes at least three sections:
Certificate students can also attend a PDP Workshop to learn more about how to construct an effective PDP.
While there is no set length requirement; some PDPs are longer than others. However, most PDPs are over 1,200 words (or at least 5-7 pages double-spaced). Your Leadership Coach will help you determine how long your PDP should be based on your specific development goals and involvement opportunities.
Students must submit their PDPs by the indicated deadline based on when they enrolled in the Program. For students who enrolled in the Fall semester, their PDP will be due the following May 1. For students who enrolled in the Spring semester, their PDP will be due the following December 1.
The minimum time requirement for leadership programs to count toward fulfilling Certificate requirements is those that last more than four hours. There are several types of programs that students have used in the past, including academic and professional development conferences, research symposia, retreats coordinated by faculty or staff, and various leadership opportunities within each academic college. Talk to your Leadership Coach or contact the Dean's Office of your home college if you are looking for ideas.
If you would like to take a course outside of the above list, you must gain pre-approval from your Leadership Coach after submitting a syllabus to him or her, and justifying (in writing) how the course helps you achieve your learning goals (based on your PDP).
No. The requirements of the Certificate are designed to help students reflect and practice what they are learning in courses as they take them. Therefore, having completed a course prior to enrolling in the Program will not fulfill Certificate requirements.
Yes. i-Programs are the only requirements that will be "back-counted," as enrollment in these programs is limited and students can only participate in a particular i-Program once.
No. The requirements of the Certificate are designed to help students reflect and practice what they are learning in the team experiences as they participate in them. Having participated in a non-classroom team prior to enrolling in the program will not fulfill Certificate requirements.
A Portfolio contains evidence, data, and examples of a student's participation in the Certificate Program. In essence, the Portfolio should publicly demonstrate that you have the necessary knowledge, skills, perspectives, and experiences associated with effective leadership development in college. The Portfolio, like the PDP, has no set structure, but should at least include a personal introduction section, a revised PDP, and reflection papers for each significant experience students have in the program (including each program, course, and team experience). In the past, students have designed websites, created Power Point presentations, compiled binders, and displayed posters as formats for their Portfolio. Click here to see examples of effective Portfolios. To complete the Portfolio requirement, students must attend a Portfolio Workshop. To view all upcoming Workshops and register, log in to our website, click "Certificate" from the menu, then "Workshop Registration".
When you believe you have completed all the program requirements, you will need to complete online completion documents by logging into the Leadership Center website. The form will need to be completed and submitted to our office by the indicated deadline. Once you complete and submit the responses, your coach will automatically receive an email with those materials requesting them to approve both your portfolio and program completion. This will ensure that you can participate in the next Certificate Completion Ceremony. Please also email the Certificate Program coordinator at least one semester before you plan on completing the Certificate Program to ensure you are included.
To register or volunteer in Leadership Center i-programs, workshops and events, please log in now.
All students registered for an Illinois Leadership Center i-program or Leadership Workshop Series will need to read and consent to the following cancellation policy prior to registration.