The University of Vermont's Leadership & Civic Engagement Programs (LCE) is housed in the Department of Student Life. Our mission is to foster a culture of student involvement, leadership, and learning through hands-on civic engagement. We envision a student body that is:
- Actively engaged in their college and local community;
- Challenged and changed by first-hand experiences in communities that are different from their own;
- Empowered and inspired by the people they met through their efforts;
- Encouraged to learn and understand issues around cultural pluralism, social justice, and environmental issues;
And forever moved to help make a difference after they leave UVM. The LCE programs are grounded in both the social change model of leadership and development (Komives & Wagner: Leadership for a Better World, 2009) and the active citizen continuum (Break Away, 2009). Combined, this approach to student leadership and civic engagement encourage students to pursue social change through the "Seven C's" of values that include:"change, citizenship, common purpose, collaboration, controversy with civility, consciousness of self, congruence (for example, walking one's talk), and commitment. We believe that citizenship is inclusive of many types of civic engagement, from politics, to community organizing, to volunteering, to being a good neighbor.
The LCE programs are a hybrid of the previous Student Life program areas of Community Service and Leadership and Engagement. This innovative approach to student engagement for UVM is supported by a small team of professionals including the Assistant Director of LCE and two graduate assistants. These staff work closely with undergraduate students and clubs on leadership skills, volunteering opportunities, and social responsibility.