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The department offers several academic programs in the area of Leadership and Social Change.  At the undergraduate level, we coordinate the university Minor in Leadership and Social Change as well as Virginia Tech's Leadership and Social Change Residential College.  At the graduate level, we coordinate a Graduate Certificate Program in Collaborative Community Leadership.  Example courses offered by the department include:

LDRS 1414:  Exploring Citizen Leadership

This two-semester interdisciplinary course offers an introduction to citizen leadership.  1414 explores traditional and contemporary leadership theory and competencies by comparing cultural contexts of leadership.  1424 introduces leadership praxis (action and reflection) as a method of research and service designed to continually refine leadership theory competencies, and values.

LDRS 1414 is a foundational course that introduces the theories, concepts and competencies associated with practicing effective leadership, while simultaneously examining the Social Change Model of Leadership Development. These two interwoven approaches--leadership and social change--provide students with a unique experience of personal and relational leadership development.

LDRS 1424:  Citizen Leadership Praxis

LDRS 1424, which builds off of LDRS 1414, is a project-based course. Students will take the concepts and competencies they learned in LDRS 1414 and apply those toward a community-based service-learning project. To meet this application, students will focus on the Social Change Model as well as different socially responsible leadership concepts to prepare them to address the issues associated with their projects. The main goal of LDRS 1424 is to provide students with a real-world application of leadership and social change in a project-based experience. 

ALCE 3014 - Leadership for Professionals in Agricultural Organizations

This course is designed to assist students in developing knowledge and understanding of leadership theory and basic skills required to perform effectively in leadership positions within agricultural community situations.

ALCE 5154 - Partnerships and Volunteerism

Students will explore current volunteer development models, collaboration process theory, and key management areas including:

  • Visioning
  • Organizing a partnership or collaboration
  • Creating motivating volunteer positions
  • Recruiting, screening, and interviewing; orientation and training
  • Supervising
  • Evaluation
  • Retention and Resolution
  • Risk Management
  • Measuring Program Effectiveness

LDRS 5454 - Leadership Foundations for Diverse Contexts

Identification and definition of leadership in formal and non-formal education settings, communities, and organizations are the foundations of this course. Focus leadership theories include:

  • Trait leadership
  • Skill-based leadership
  • Situatioinal leadership
  • Path-goal leadership theory
  • Transformational leadership
  • Team leadership


For additional resources, check out the Undergraduate Catalog and Graduate Catalog.

Leadership and Social Change Mission Areas