Posted February 13, 2015 by Missy Burgess 

Announcing I-LEAD® Connect

“I-LEAD® is a life-changing experience.”

“As a result of what I learned at I-LEAD®, I will take what I learned back home to make a positive impact on my campus.”

These common quotes from participants in ACUI’s premier student leadership institute, the Institute for Leadership Education and Development, can be heard every July. Those of us who have participated often wonder how we can bring the experience of I-LEAD® back to our campuses to have an impact on more students. For those who have received a transformed student leader back on campus after their experience at I-LEAD®, you may wish you could send many more students than time or finances may allow.

I-LEAD (r) Connect square imageIn response to these challenges, ACUI has introduced a new campus-based I-LEAD®—I-LEAD® Connect. I-LEAD® Connect is a three-day campus-based institute designed to emphasize the key concept areas of leadership, community development, and change. I-LEAD® Connect offers an opportunity for students to focus on personal growth and other issues facing our world while focusing specifically on the impact they can make on your campuses. Similar to the annual institute, this experience will prepare students to develop skills that will serve them as leaders in any situation regardless of role, organization, or environment, but it will also provide a shared experience to break cross-departmental barriers and collectively make positive change on their campuses.

Drawing from the strength of I-LEAD®, I-LEAD® Connect’s curriculum design is grounded in the Social Change Model and the Student Leadership Challenge while remaining focused on three of the Association’s core competencies—Leadership, Communication, and Intercultural Proficiency. One of the differences, though, is the additional focus on campus-based action planning by an entire group of participants. With the assistance of the ACUI Central Office Staff and your campus contact, this institute can be customized for each campus to better fulfill the needs of your student community. The other added advantage is the professional development opportunity for a larger group of professionals on your campus to have roles as small group facilitators. As most everyone who has served in this role during the annual institute can attest, the experience is often just as significant for the professionals involved as it is for the students.

I am finishing my term as co-program team lead for I-LEAD®, and I have personally seen lives change (including my own) throughout the last four years. I am excited for the potential of this new institute to help so many more students and for the continued growth of the I-LEAD® family!

Interested in pricing, logistics, and what makes this institute successful? Find out more on I-LEAD® Connect’s webpage or by emailing Brian Magee at
Missy Burgess

Missy Burgess is the Associate Director for Student Involvement at University of Wisconsin–Oshkosh.

Missy supervises student leadership and involvement staff in the Reeve Memorial Union, including volunteer service, student organizations and emerging programs, Reeve Union Board, leadership, diversity and inclusion, and greek life. She holds a bachelor’s from Southern Illinois University–Edwardsville, a master’s from Kansas State University, and a Ph.D. in educational leadership from the University of North Dakota.


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