Even individuals who are natural leaders benefit from training and encouragement. The Rockefeller Leadership Fellows (RLF) program provides Fellows with resources in leadership theories and practical skills. The juniors selected each spring begin their journey of self-discovery as seniors the following year. As they take part in the workshops, dinner discussions, and team-building exercises, they gain a better understanding of the qualities and responsibilities expected of leaders and how to adapt their own leadership styles to different situations. Throughout the program, Fellows learn from the insight and experience of distinguished guests as well as from each other. During the Spring Term, Fellows participate in selecting their successors in the program. When students who participate in the program graduate, they are better equipped to assume the leadership roles that await them.
At the Rockefeller Center, we define leadership as the process of influencing and organizing a group to mobilize its resources toward accomplishing an identified goal. It is about involving communities in constructive dialogues concerning issues that shape their lives. It is about citizen involvement and civic engagement. Because lasting change frequently must come from within the group being “led,” leaders must create the conditions for those affected to make their own new world. They must, in that sense, “give the work back.”
This definition guides our emphasis on the individual as a leader, the individual operating within a team, and the individual working as a team member within an organization. We believe effective leaders must have a clear vision of the values, ethics, and morals that shape their thinking and actions, as well as an understanding of the skills and experiences they possess or need to develop. The Rockefeller Leadership Fellows program helps Fellows examine their skills, qualities, and attributes as leaders, and to analyze how these influence teamwork and play out in their lives. Through the study of various theories of leadership and experiential exercises, the program highlights key approaches to promoting teamwork and achieving goals. Finally, it concludes with a look at leadership challenges in a work environment and at a societal level and with a study of how Fellows can strengthen their own effectiveness as leaders.
Robin Frye, Program Coordinator for Co-Curricular Programs
Last Updated: 2/11/13