Leadership Programs

As a hub for co-curricular and extracurricular leadership development programs, the Center for Student Engagement supports the leadership development of students through a variety of programs, initiatives, and services. The CSE is committed to encouraging character development and supporting leadership potential in all students. Whether through involvement as an officer in a student organization or through participation in programs such as LEAD GW and the TRAiLs adventure program, CSE Leadership Programs offers a wide array of opportunities for students to get involved and develop their leadership skills.



Adventure Bound
  > Outdoor adventure pre-semester program for new students

Excellence in Leadership Seminar
  > Individual workshops open to all students
  > Weekly workshop series for LEAD GW cohort (fall)
  > Leadership Foundations Institute, 7-week workshop series open to all students (spring)

George Washington's Leadership Retreat
 > Full-day leadership training at the Mount Vernon Estate

  > Leadership focused pre-semester, co-curricular program for new students

SUMMIT Outdoor Challenge Course
  > Low ropes course located on the Mount Vernon campus
  > Free for student orgs, nominal fees for GW partners and local community

  > Outdoor trips open to all student throughout the academic year

Individualized Leadership Trainings (see below)
 > Past topics have included leadership styles, conflict management, group development, communication, and more.

Image with the words leadership, social responsibility, communication, critical thinking, organizational management, self-awareness, and diversity

Pillars of Leadership
CSE Leadership Programs selected five pillars to guide and focus our leadership development work. These pillars were carefully chosen to align with relevant leadership research and theories, the University's strategic plan, and the transferable skills that help individuals increase their successful students and citizen leaders. We believe that leadership flourishes through building one's competence in these five areas, regardless of major or extracurricular involvement. In teaching these leadership concepts, an emphasis is placed on critical thinking and experiential learning in order to better prepare students to become active and engaged citizens and leaders at GW and beyond.

     Social Responsibility
     Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
     Organizational Management

Requesting Individualized Leadership Trainings
The CSE's Leadership Programs team has provided leadership development trainings to Resident Assistants, student organizations, Colonial Cabinet, Summer Programs staff, Greek Life, and more. Topics can be adapted to meet the needs of a group. Examples of past topics include, but are not limited to, group dynamics, leadership foundations, leadership styles, ethical decision making, communication skills, group development, conflict resolution, and self-awareness.

Please contact Natalie Hershberger, Program Coordinator for Leadership, at [email protected] or 202-994-1298 to inquire about individualized trainings or other CSE Leadership Programs.



Banner that reads Leadership Foundations Insitute

The Leadership Foundations Institute is a NEW leadership development program designed for GW students who want to build their leadership confidence and skills. Over seven weeks this spring, participants will meet with a small group of peers to think critically about leadership and learn how to become more effective and engaged leaders.

Participants of the Institute will:
<> better understand leadership beyond the context of a person’s position or title
<> improve self-awareness, communication skills, and ability to engage in inclusive and socially responsible practices; and
<> form new connections with GW peers and staff members

What to expect:
Participants will meet weekly on Tuesdays between March 6 and April 24, excluding Spring Break.
Sessions are 4:30pm-5:45pm in District House.

The Institute’s curriculum is based on the Center for Student Engagement’s five pillars of leadership. Each week will explore a foundational element of each pillar: Self-Awareness; Communication; Organizational Management; Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion; and Social Responsibility. Weekly topics will include: leveraging your strengths, leadership styles, group dynamics, allyship, and marketing your leadership skills.

No previous leadership experience necessary - all students are welcome! Sessions will be primarily facilitated by CSE Leadership Programs staff with the support of campus partners.

Space is limited. Click here to register no later than Friday, March 2.

If you have questions or would like more information, please contact Natalie Hershberger, Program Coordinator for Leadership, at [email protected].