Cedar Crest College newspaper since 1923
by Jericho Burke
Students returning this semester have one more option to add to their academic course load. The Undergraduate Leadership Certificate, introduced this year, allows students to hone their leadership skills in a classroom setting.
According to Arlene Peltola, assistant professor and chair of the Middle State Working Group, the certificate will help the student “have an increased self-awareness of one’s purpose, values, discipline, and life story as they relate to leadership” and “have an insightful understanding of the five dimensions of an authentic leader.”
The certificate consists of 12 credits. It is “an academic series of courses and a social action project designed for women who want to prepare themselves for a leadership role in society,” according to the college’s 2012-2013 academic plan.
14 students have signed up to complete the certificate, which will be awarded to them upon graduation.
“The cohort of students in our inaugural program is filled with bright students, diverse majors, and people I will follow throughout their careers,” said Peltola.
One such student, Turner Vasil, a junior writing major, said, “For me the biggest takeaway is the focus on authenticity. The main theme of the first class in the program is developing a deep and clear understanding on who we are as individuals, and learning how we can stay true to ourselves so that we can lead others and help them do the same.”
Vasil is currently enrolled in “Foundations of Leadership,” a discussion based course about the barriers many leaders have had to overcome. “Positive Leadership” will be offered in the upcoming spring semester.
“I wish more people would become involved in the program,” said Vasil. “Leadership is so important and applicable to pretty much any field of work or area of life.”
The certificate is being implemented by The Cedar Crest College Women’s Leadership Institute and various faculty members.