Leadership Minor Students Can Support Your Organization
If you are a community organization that would like to work with an individual or group of Leadership Minor students in completing a service project, we would love to partner with you. This service project would be embedded in the 3rd core course in our program, LEAD 3971: Field Experience.
What Our Partners Have to Say
Partnering with Leadership Minor instructors and students is one of the best collaborations The Arc Minnesota has in meeting our strategic objectives. This partnership has impacted our mission of supporting people with disabilities by providing fresh perspectives and implementation-ready solutions in a thoughtful, futuristic and direct way. We look forward to many more years of collaboration that is a win for us and a win for the students who support our work.
It was a great experience working with leadership students. They brought a new set of eyes to our business, provided a fresh perspective and helped us rethink some of the assumptions that were driving our business. Personally, I enjoyed the enthusiasm that the group brought to the project and it brought back the passion I had when I first started the business.
About the Minor
The University of Minnesota Undergraduate Leadership Minor prepares students for real-life leadership experiences, both on campus and in the larger global community, by combining social change theories of leadership with the practice of adaptive leadership.
About Our Students
Leadership Minor students come from different disciplines and have a wide range of interests, skills and goals. By the time they work with you, they’ll have taken 2 of our core courses: Personal Leadership in the University and Leadership, You and Your Community. Students bring to their Field Experience a willingness to use their voice, to embrace personal growth, to consider the needs of the community and to lean into social change initiatives with integrity and awareness.
What is the Field Experience?
The Field Experience is a semester-long project that our students undertake in service to an organization in the community. While they work on their field project, they simultaneously attend classes and complete assignments in our program.
Field Projects vary in scope, structure and aim. The chart below will give you a sense of the ways the field experience is structured and what your contribution might be. You will also find a list of past projects to give you a sense of the kind of work students engage in.
|During the Fall / Spring Semesters||During the Summer|
|Course Themes||Social Entrepreneurship, Youth and Education, Health Equity||No Specific Theme|
|Project Length||Approx. 80-120 hour projects||Approx. 80-100 hour projects|
|Format||Group projects (typically 2 to 4 students on each project; each student contributes 35-40 hours)||Individual projects|
- Provide a brief description of the project aims and scope
- Meet at the beginning, mid and end of the semester to connect with students and provide guidance (most partners meet weekly with student groups)
- Share background information about your organization and the methods you’ve chosen to approach your mission
- Offer a consistent presence - provide mentorship and guidance throughout the semester
- As often as possible, connect students to the “heart” of your work - allow them to experience your work firsthand to help them understand the “why” of what you do
- Contribute to students’ leadership development and growth by providing feedback - this is formalized in an “end of semester” feedback meeting and through an evaluation that will serve as part of the the students’ final course grade
- Approve students’ service hours through our Center for Community-Engaged Learning website (we will provide this link)
- Planning a Community Day event for an urban research center
- Volunteering at a teen drop-in shelter
- Surveying women-owned businesses to identify opportunities for growth
- Identifying partnerships for a mental health organization
- Conducting interviews with participants in an afterschool program for youth
- Developing the concept for a new social impact startup
- Gathering research to inform outreach materials for a school
- Acting as a “secret shopper” for a social venture to evaluate the appeal of their product
- Contacting clients of an arts organization to gather feedback on their programs
- Improving food access through work with corner stores, delivery of affordable food, or developing a coop model
- Creating curriculum that trains young people on leadership skills
- Facilitating leadership skill building groups with young people
- Volunteering for a local health services organization