New programme for master’s students develops talent for leadership
In September 2011, Leiden University is launching a new extra-curricular programme for excellent master’s students. Growing in leadership will help students develop the knowledge and skills which are indispensable for leadership roles. The programme is made possible thanks to the collaboration of 15 social partners and a subsidy from the Sirius Programme. The latter was officially awarded on 18 November by the State Secretary of Education, Halbe Zijlstra.
Growing in leadership is aimed at motivated master’s students with excellent grades and no study delays, whose ambition it is to develop leadership qualities. They will be following the programme alongside their regular master’s programme. Following a selection procedure, the students will be acquiring essential knowledge and experience with leadership through practice. Working in teams, and under the supervision of a lecturer coach, the students will carry out assignments which will allow them to experience what leadership entails. In parallel, students will also follow skills training courses and seminars on leadership. In this way, they will be able to discover the potential leader in themselves, they will become aware of the values and norms in this field, and they will develop important leadership skills. The students will determine their progress on the basis of assignments at the beginning and the end of the programme.
The programme fulfils a need for both master’s students and their future employers. A study among Leiden students showed that 70% of the respondents were interested in leadership programmes. Dutch employers, on the other hand, find it important that education should include leadership competencies such as communicating clearly, taking responsibility, effective negotiating and dealing with conflicts.
The Sirius programme allows academic universities and universities of professional education to challenge their students to make the most of their talents. The subsidy awarded to Leiden University will be used to develop Growing in leadership into a successful programme. After 2014, the programme will be functioning independently. During the subsidy period, Leiden will be supported by the following 15 partners:
- Den Haag Municipality
- Province of Utrecht
- Leiden Municipality
- Province of Zuid-Holland
- Akzo Nobel
- Boer en Croon
- Association of Netherlands Municipalities
- Royal Haskoning
- Oxfam NOVIB
- Senior Civil Service Directorate
- Ministry of Education, Culture and Science
These companies and public and private institutions will be coaching the students in their practical assignments and providing facilities. In addition, they will also be paying a contribution to the students for the services they render.
Leiden University offers inquisitive and internationally oriented students the opportunity to follow excellence programmes in every phase of their studies. For secondary school pupils, there is the Pre-University College, and for bachelor’s students, the Leiden University College and the Honours College. Master’s students can follow research-oriented master’s programmes and talent-oriented programmes. The new Growing in leadership programme completes the excellence track for master’s students.
(19 November 2010)