UM Leadership Institute to offer non-credit training for all students

The Leadership Institute at UM hopes to provide students with the opportunistic tools that will mold effective leaders and help in the networking process for current students and student leaders.
“This is a 40-hour certification program where students can choose among different workshops and weekend leadership training sessions,” said Cynthia Chapel, graduate asst. for Student Activities and Leadership Programs.
The Institute will offer informative non-credit workshops and seminars on a variety of topics as part of a program that allows students who participate the chance to graduate with a leadership plaque and certificate.
The workshop topics include cross-cultural awareness, rewards and recognition, empowering others, and creating a sense of ownership and retreat planning. Some of the objectives of the workshops include learning how to network with people, effective communication skills, different leadership models, and ways to motivate and recognize others.
“These workshops are not like regular classes,” senior Valerie Figueredo said. “You get a chance to interact with other students, there are no assignments and no tests”.
Figueredo, who is the co-chair of COSO and the president of the Alpha Kappa Psi business fraternity, completed the required 40 hours of training and ethics courses last year.
“A lot of people that go to these workshops are already involved in student activities and organizations and want to become better leaders,” she said. “But even if you are not involved in any organization the workshops will definitely help you prepare to work through team situations after you graduate and start working.”
Figueredo said that the workshops were very effective and by being active in many activities she really got to apply what she learned.
“With over 80 members in the fraternity, there’s bound to be conflict,” she said. “From the workshops I learned how to handle situations without making people angry, how to listen, how to remove emotion and focus on objectivity, when to compromise, and when and where to seek help if necessary.”
Chapel said that this is an opportunity for students to develop the skills necessary to effectively lead others. She explained that students must complete certificate requirements within two years of initial enrollment. After the completion of each level, students will receive a certificate. The certificate levels include Bronze, Silver and Gold.
“This is definitely worth it,” Figueredo said. “It is completely fun- you don’t dread going to the workshops”.
The next Spring 2003 leadership workshop will be held in UC 233 on Feb. 26 at 12:30 p.m.

Andrea Alegria can be contacted at