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VCU LEAD Students will discover more about leadership and their own individual style of leadership in the classroom. Through the LEAD course work, students will have the ability to take multiple assessments in order to better understand their individual and organizational leadership styles and how to lead in different settings. LEAD students enroll in a 10-credit course load through LEAD to complete the Certificate of Leadership Studies, which may or may not be above and beyond courses required for degrees.


The average course structure for the LEAD program is as follows:

Semester 1

UNIV 200: Rhetoric and Logic for Leaders, 3 credits (if not previously taken)
Pre-requisite: UNIV 111 and UNIV 112 or equivalent credit.

This course fulfills the Core research and academic argument level course requirements using the theme of leadership for the writing and rhetorical work. Students will gain significant skills in academic and practical research; develop advanced writing skills; and, have a strong basis in logical reasoning.

LDRS 201: Individual Leadership Seminar, 1 credit
This seminar will expose students to a series of instruments, experience and methods of analyzing and understanding the self in relation to leadership. Emphasis is on self-discovery and personal identification of leadership skills and application in the leadership experience.


Semester 2

LDRS 202: The Leadership Context, 1 credit
Pre-requisite: LDRS 201

The seminar will provide an overview of the different contexts in which leadership occurs.  Students will examine leadership pathways that are available through the VCU LEAD program and choose a pathway for in-depth exploration.

UNIV 270: Foundations of Leadership Study, 3 credits
Prerequisite: UNIV 200

The course provides a study of foundational theories in organizational leadership, group dynamics, and human relationships used in a variety of corporate, non-profit and educational settings. Students will learn historical and contemporary leadership theories. Students will also gain practical experience in analyzing existing leadership processes in industry, non-profit or educational settings. Students acquire skills in understanding leadership development concepts including decision-making, problem-solving, conflict management, and evaluation strategies. Students will gain practical experience in individual and group presentation techniques. This course meets the Core Curriculum requirement for social/behavioral sciences.



There are no courses that take place over the summer.  However, all LEAD students are expected to complete a pathway, which allows them to customize their application of leadership learning through one of the following experiences: Peer Leadership, Study Abroad, Research, Internship, Entrepreneurship, and Service.


Semester 3

LDRS 301: Leadership Engagement, 1 credit
Prerequisite: LDRS 202

The seminar focuses intensely on the student leadership experience and will ask students to reflect and evaluate their pathway experience.  Students will analyze the ways in which leadership theory and principles learned in the classroom applied to their experience.  They will also identify strategies to strengthen their leadership effectiveness and aid in their leadership development.


Semester 4

LDRS 302: Capstone Leadership Seminar, 1 credit
Prerequisite: LDRS 301

Culminating seminar that integrates all aspects of the VCU LEAD program.  Students will examine the different contexts in which they experienced leadership from the perspective of both leader and follower.  Students will clearly illustrate their expertise and self-efficacy as a leader by creating an e-portfolio of their experiences.

VCU LEAD no longer accepts applications for the program.  To apply for the new LLP, VCU Transform, please click here!

Virginia Commonwealth University

Division of Student Affairs
1000 W. Grace St.
Box 842548
Richmond, VA 23284-2548
804-827-LEAD (5323)
Page last updated Sep. 17, 2019 | Edit
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