Community Leadership Graduate Certificate

A 15 credit Post-Baccalaureate Certificate option in Community Leadership requires successful completion of four courses. The certificate is intended for students who want to gain a baseline understanding of community leadership. Students may apply certificate course credits to the Masters of Professional Studies in Community Leadership program.

The Community Leadership program includes core courses that provide a broad understanding of the leadership, ethical and quantitative skills needed to excel as a community leader. Upon completing the core, students can take courses in the critical topics of policy, race/gender/class, non-profits, urban studies, and social entrepreneurship.

Required Courses

CLDR 601: Introduction to Community Leadership: Contexts, Models, and Communication

This Introduction to Community Leadership course is the foundational and first class for the Certificate and MPS in Community Leadership, grounding students in key concepts, skills, and experiences that they will continue to build upon throughout their graduate program and professional development. Students will learn the theory and practice of establishing an inclusive learning community with attention to developing leadership skills of self-reflection, deep listening, and facilitation. Thematic course units will investigate core program elements

-Social contexts of community leadership with special attention to urban settings, historical and structural inequity, and asset-based development.
-Models and metaphors for community leadership, including attention to diverse theoretical and practice-based approaches to leadership with opportunities to explore leaders’ identities and personal strengths.
-The central role of diverse media platforms and approaches to communication that underpin effective community leadership practice.

In addition to class readings, written reflections, and discussions, students will participate in a number of trainings and community-based experiences to complement their classroom learning. Across the course, students will develop a relationship with a community leader and corresponding partner organization. Through regular semi-structured conversations, they’ll have the opportunity to learn and discuss core elements of community leadership through direct mentorship of leaders and community-based experiences. Students will work with community partners to collaboratively determine and design a project with a product that will contribute directly to a need in their partner organization. At the end of this first foundational course for the MPS, in addition to the community project, students will also create a template for their overall MPS digital portfolio, designing a compelling media platform for planning and demonstrating their best learning and development as they move forward.

SOCY 600 or PUBL 600: Research Methodology

This course is designed to advance graduate students’ knowledge of the modes of inquiry in the social sciences and to familiarize them with research methods and techniques.

SOCY 606: Social Inequality & Social Policy

This course examines poverty and inequality in modern society. The focus is on describing the extent of poverty and inequality, examining theories that attempt to explain these phenomena and discussing the policies that have been employed to mitigate them. In addition to class inequality, the course will consider racial and gender inequality.

CLDR 603: Capstone Project

This 6-credit course provides participants with a culmination experience in the theory and practice of collaborative leadership, community-centered social capital development, and culturally-inclusive problem solving. Students will demonstrate an appreciation for and application of community-based knowledge, methodology, theories, and traditions related to building community-assets. Working in conjunction with a local community partner organization and a faculty member, students will (1) identify and examine key issues facing a specific community, and (b) develop and deliver a research-based intellectual product that enhances the capacities of the served community and partner organization.

This is a 6-credit course.

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