From our Director
I believe the core of NC State’s mission is the goal of transforming lives to provide leadership across NC State and around the world. Our increasingly global society demands the ability to communicate, understand, and work effectively. This will require new levels of leadership knowledge, skills, and cultural fluency.
Since 1998, Leadership and Civic Engagement (formerly known as CSLEPS – Center for Student Leadership, Ethics, and Public Service) complemented the classroom academic experience through high-impact programs and services. This empowers and equips students with the skills, knowledge, and tools to forge paths for positive change. We provide opportunities for critical reflection and exploration of personal values, guide students to successfully lead teams with an inclusive lens, facilitate change, and maximize success in a multicultural environment.
My team and I in Leadership and Civic Engagement are excited to continue creating a community where students feel at home, have a healthy sense of belonging, and feel supported as they lead, engage, and grow. We cannot be more appreciative of your financial support in directly changing the lives of our students.
Melissa V. Green, Leadership and Civic Engagement
Empowering students to take the lead in the future of the country, NC State’s Leadership and Civic Engagement department brought back the PackThePolls coalition.
The program was created in 2016 to increase student voter registration and turnout. Now, the coalition is working toward newly refined goals:
Bring together organizations, faculty, students, and staff across the university and community who share similar goals of activating students, to become civically engaged in upcoming election and coordinate efforts to maximize impact.
Education and Centralized Information Sharing
Provide non-bias, up-to-date election and civic engagement information to the NC State community and ongoing civic engagement educational activities.
Increase Voter Registration and Election-Turnout
Find creative ways to engage and increase voter registration and participation. Outcomes would be assessed by a National Study of Learning, Voting and Engagement study.
Feed the Pack
The Feed the Pack Food Pantry is a community-based initiative sustained by NC State to combat the food insecurity experienced by members of the Wolfpack family. This initiative is led by students and supported by Leadership and Civic Engagement.
In fall 2017, the Feed the Pack Food Pantry shifted under the Leadership and Civic Engagement umbrella. The leadership team consists of nine students who serve the university community through operation of the pantry, along with leadership and service projects.
During the 2017-2018 academic year, the Feed the Pack Food Pantry was open Monday through Friday 20 hours each week. In 2018, the pantry moved to a more accessible location in the Quad Commons, the fourth location since the pantry was established in 2012.
During summer 2017, the pantry was open three days per week, for six hours each week.
Alternative Service Break
The Alternative Service Break (ASB) program provides high-impact learning experiences where students engage in direct service within a local or global community, while being immersed in the culture.
ASB experiences serve to help students identify their privileges and begin understanding and addressing inequitable systems afforded to those with unearned privilege in our country. They can then use that knowledge in partnerships with GLBT Center, Women’s Center, and the Office of International Services.
The Leadership Development Program and Certificate consists of 10 interconnected foundational leadership workshops designed to engage and prepare new leaders. Workshop topics include ethical decision making, strategic communication, team development, and facilitating change. Students also have the option to earn a Leadership Certificate by engaging in a mentor relationship and leadership experience, and completing the foundations workshops and a reflection paper.
Stand-alone, one-time workshops are also offered, which are designed to provide overviews of single leadership topics.
Through the Leadership Development Program students are:
- Inspired to see themselves as leaders.
- Guided in developing their leadership potential.
- Engaged in a self-exploration of their strengths.
- Empowered to make a positive difference on campus and in their communities.
The LeaderShape Institute™ has developed a national reputation as a premier leadership development program for young adults. The LeaderShape Institute is an intensive and energizing six-day program open to 60 student participants interested in producing extraordinary results in an organization and developing a commitment to lead with a high level of integrity.
Through the institute, students gain:
- Clearly defined long term and short term goals.
- Increased capacity to build authentic relationships, inspire peers, adhere to broad ethical standards, and create sustainable change.
- Increased advocacy for issues of social justice and social responsibility.
- Confidence to identify their own strengths and weaknesses.
- Confidence to become engaged student leaders on campus.
- Confidence in their ability to create a vision or ideal future for their community and/or organization.
The program aims to help students break down cultural barriers, gives them the opportunity to develop cultural competence, and have dialogue centered on issues of social justice.
Leadership and Civic Engagement provided financial, logistical, and recruitment support to NC State’s Global Training Initiative to launch the inaugural Global LeaderShape Institute™. The result was an intensive intercultural leadership development experience for NC State students alongside students from Zhejiang University in China.
I first became involved with Leadership and Civic Engagement through the Alternative Service Break (ASB) program during my first year at NC State. Little did I know I would continue to immerse myself in Leadership and Civic Engagement all four years of my undergrad career.
I not only had an amazing opportunity to make connections with inspiring individuals and organizations, but the program also aided me in deciding what I want to do with my life after my academic career. They helped me determine my major when I was an undecided freshman and helped me realize I wanted to become heavily involved in environmental policy.
For those wanting to become involved with Leadership and Civic Engagement, my advice is to always be open-minded because you never know what the individuals or programs in the office will teach you - they may even help you decide your life plan.
When people ask me if it was worth “giving up” my spring break every year to participate in ASB, I respond by saying, “I wish I could remain involved in the program for the rest of my life.”
Participating in Leadership and Civic Engagement programming gave me the comfort and confidence to do what was once
far-fetched to me. I’ve learned to navigate difficult conversations, team build in various settings, facilitate workshops, and coordinate programming all while working with diverse groups of people and learning different styles of leadership.
Initially I saw the office as a way to meet my personal service needs, but since remaining engaged with the office I’ve connected with people who are equally as passionate about service and leadership building. I find it to be a great community.
If I had the chance to share advice with my peers about engaging in the office, I would say “Go for it.” It has been one of the best investments I’ve made while attending NC State. It’s given me the skills and confidence needed to venture my way into other areas of leadership across campus. I’m incredibly thankful for everyone in the office.