Learn about Leadership Opportunities!
Leadership Development at Fairfield University exists in numerous offices, departments, and student paid and/or volunteer positions.
More information regarding these experiences and how to apply for them can be found at Leadership Opportunities.
Leadership Development Programs & Events
To learn more about the programs and events we sponsor, use the quicklinks below to navigate what is currently available.
At Fairfield we believe that every student has the capacity to develop their own leadership identity. Through our Leadership Development Programs students are able to learn more about how they can practice effective leadership in their current roles, civic life, and future careers.
We are a community of learners working together to better not only ourselves but also one another
Leadership is a process through which people work together to create a positive impact
Leadership is not positional
Students are responsible for their own Leader Self-Development
Supporting Theories & Models
While leadership happens in many places, we base our work on five foundational developmental models:
Leadership Identity Development Model
Relational Leadership Model
Social Change Model of Leadership Development
Learning Based Assessment
All of our leadership development programs utilize assessment to determine how students are learning and exercising their understanding of leadership. Analysis of the information collected through these assessments directly informs our practice of how we develop intentional programs to aid our students in their leadership identity development.
This course focuses on first year students exploring a nontraditional FYE curriculum through self-examination of their personal leadership development.
Student Experiences "What do past participants have to say?"
I really enjoyed taking this course. Through various different discussions and activities, I have learned how to be a great leader in the community and at Fairfield.
This course was a great experience that taught me many valuable lessons that I could not have learned in my regular classes.
This series consists of twelve workshops that will be offered twice a week for sophomores, juniors, and seniors who are seeking opportunities to continue their leader self-development. Workshops will take place in the Kelley Center Presentation room on Mondays at 7 p.m. and in the Barone Campus Center room 206 on Wednesdays at 5 p.m. A leadership development certificate will be awarded to students who successfully complete eight of the twelve workshops.
Learning to be an Active Listener will take place on Monday, September 9 and Wednesday, September 11, 2013
Active listening is one of the most important skills you can have. How well you listen has a major impact on your effectiveness, and on the quality of your relationships with others. Of all the communication skills, listening is the earliest learned and the most frequently used, yet it seems to be the least mastered.
Roles in Teams and Groups will take place on Monday, September 16 and Wednesday, September 18, 2013
The role each individual takes in a team or group is crucial to the dynamic. Each individual has something valuable to offer; however, they must learn what this is. Learning your strengths and how to utilize them within a group setting is the first step to effective team leadership.
Group Facilitation will take place on Monday, September 23 and Wednesday, September 25, 2013
In order for a group to thrive, some form of facilitation must take place. The key of facilitation is learning how to engage, direct, and lead a group. Group facilitation skills come with knowledge and practice. When the skills are mastered, they can be applied in a variety of situations and allow you to be a strong and dynamic leader.
Leadership vs. Management will take place on Monday, September 30 and Wednesday, October 2, 2013
Leadership and management are often times used interchangeably, but in no way should be. As a leader, one should be aware of personal strengths, utilize the strengths of a group, and provide the perfect mix of challenge, support, and inspiration. Such characteristics are not commonly present in a sole management style.
Strengths "I know mine, now what do I do?" will take place on Monday, October 7 and Wednesday, October 9, 2013
After learning your personal strengths, the next step is using them in the right way. Each of your strengths can be transferable to a variety of situations. Knowing how to successfully identify and apply these strengths will make all the difference.
Creating Positive Change will only take place on Wednesday, October 16, 2013
Some of the world's greatest leaders have neglected to use their skills for good. As a leader, you possess skills that can affect the world in one of two ways; positive or negative. By applying your strengths and abilities to positive change, you are not only rewarding yourself, but the world around you.
What does it mean to be an Ethical Leader? will take place on Monday, October 21 and Wednesday, October 23, 2013
During your day to day life you will be faced with a variety of situations and decisions. With leadership, comes a great deal of control, yet responsibility. Making ethical decisions is important when trying to become a successful and respectful leader.
Social Identities and Leadership will take place on Monday, October 28 and Wednesday, October 30, 2013
As individuals, we all have social identities which we relate to. These identities shape our decisions, perceptions, and actions. However, as a leader, knowledge and competencies of more than one social group is needed. In order to interact with a group, or work one on one with a student, different views need to be seen.
Leader Self-Development will take place on Monday, November 4 and Wednesday, November 6, 2013
One of the most important aspects of leader development is the ability to identify opportunities that will challenge your current knowledge and skills but result in personal growth and development. Before you can lead anyone else, you need to learn to lead yourself. Self-development is a major factor in understanding how you lead yourself. Building a plan that involves constant development and change is needed to progress your leader self-development.
Peer Mentoring will take place on Monday, November 11 and Wednesday, November 13, 2013
Peer mentoring has existed in some form since the early 1900s, however has recently become one of the most effective tools on college campuses today. As a peer mentor you not only receive the opportunity to guide others through experiences, but simultaneously reflect on your own experiences. Peer mentoring provides invaluable experience, as well as the chance to provide positive change and support.
Decisions "Why we do what we do" will take place on Monday, November 18 and Wednesday, November 20, 2013
Each day we are faced with decisions which we many times don't know why we truly made them. As an individual, you have different values, opinions, habits, environmental factors, and strengths. Each work together to define the decisions we make. When identifying these causes, you may become more comfortable with and confident when decision making.
Resiliency "Learning how to face different challenge in life" will take place on Monday, December 2 and Wednesday, December 4, 2013
Challenges are a natural occurrence in life, and become one of the best learning experiences for an individual or team. In order to overcome challenges, you must face them first. Learning to be adjustable and open to change will help you become more resilient in the sense of life challenges.
Redefining Leadership (formerly LEAD 101) explores the concepts of how different leadership theories and models can be applied to students' current roles, civic life, and their future careers. First year students who enroll in this program will be studying leadership from a theoretical point of view and applying leadership to several salient areas in which effective leadership is crucial to their future as young professionals in the career paths they elect to follow as well as their civic identity. Space is limited to 100 First Year Students.
During this 12 week program students will practice reflective journal techniques about their experience in this program, utilize the Clifton StrengthsFinder "StrenghtsQuest" as well as MBTI, refine their understanding of how they practice leadership within communities for which they are a current member (including clubs/organizations and civic communities) and develop sound presentation skills for their future careers.
- Attend and actively participate in all 12, 1.5 hour sessions
- Attend Program Retreat on Saturday, February 8th from 9am - 3pm
- Complete Blackboard discussion boards
- Complete Civic Engagement Project
- Complete Leadership Portfolio Presentation
- Have fun, learn more about who you are, and how you can enhance your leadership abilities
This program has taught me that only by becoming more deeply connected with those around you can you hope to lead in a more positive and productive manner that makes a lasting change. - Haasim Vahora '16, Electrical Engineering Major
In this program I feel as though I have learned a lot about myself and how to vocalize my strengths. I am learning more about the different philosophies of leadership, and how to incorporate these into my everyday life. Overall, this program has been a positive experience and I have had the opportunity to meet great new people and learn a lot about myself. - Danielle Pittala '16, Nursing Major
This leadership program was one of the greatest experiences that I could have possibly had as an incoming freshman. This program has helped me refine my skills as a leader, and ultimately helped me achieve my goal of becoming a Resident Assistant. I would recommend that everybody interested in a leadership position take this class. It is a great opportunity to really step forward and become more successful in all areas of life. - David Neubauer '16, Biology Major
The many group based interactions through this program was important in the peer learning process; gaining knowledge from our fellow classmates helped me understand what I can do better to become a leader in my own life. Connecting the beginning of the program (personal strengths) to the end (how strength plays into leadership roles) made everything come full circle and only enforced how important knowing yourself can be. . - Meaghan Conlon '16, Finance and English Major
The Senior Leadership Experience is offered for graduating seniors each spring who have participated in previous leadership development programs during their time at Fairfield. The program provides an environment in which students share their leadership knowledge and experiences from their time at the Fairfield University and prepare to apply it to their life after college. The program is very interactive and provides students with a unique exposure to various leaders from throughout the Fairfield community. This outstanding networking opportunity truly showcases how professionals exercise leadership in a post-collegiate setting. It is also kept very small in order to focus more intently on the experiences of each individual student.
Sessions can address topics such as Strengths in relation to individual roles, group dynamics and relationships, task completion, purpose, or other organization issues or concerns. The best teams get the job done by intentionally using each member's strengths. StrengthsQuest supports student organizations to reach greater success by helping them create a team dynamic that welcomes, values, and leverages each member's talents. Students interested in requesting a session for their organization should contact email@example.com two weeks prior to the proposed session date.
StrengthsQuest gives students and educators the opportunity to develop strengths by building on their greatest talents the way in which they most naturally think, feel, and behave as unique individuals. Grounded in Positive Psychology and the Clifton StrengthsFinder, StrengthsQuest has helped more than 1 million people at more than 600 schools and universities achieve academic, career, and personal success (www.strengthsquest.com).
This annual ceremony provides the Fairfield community with a unique and enjoyable opportunity to recognize and thank the student leaders who have made the year such a success through their outstanding record of leadership, mentorship and stewardship. This year the 6th Annual Student Leadership Awards Ceremony will take place on Wednesday, April 16, 2014 at 7:30 p.m. in the Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts. We hope that you will join us for this empowering evening of student leader recognition.