The Levitt Leadership Institute is a two week intensive leadership training program for Hamilton students. Its mission is to provide students with the opportunity to develop and practice personal leadership skills in the context of their individual career interests with a focus on developing a global mindset, ethical behaviors, and regard for the public good.
The Institute is led by former Ambassador Prudence Bushnell and Christine Powers, and is modeled on the programs used to train the senior Foreign Service staff in the U.S. government. Ambassador Bushnell was responsible for leadership training for senior state department officials under Secretary of State Colin Powell; Ms Powers managed senior leadership training at the State Department from 2007-2010 and continues to train senior embassy staff.
The first week of the Institute is held on the Hamilton College campus and focuses on self-awareness, self-management, relationship management, and communication skills. The curriculum encourages students to better understand their leadership and communication styles and their personality preferences, while learning best practices for communicating and working in groups.
The second week is held in Washington, D.C., and focuses on problem-solving, decision making, motivation, networking, and conflict resolution. In addition to classroom time, students arrange networking and information gathering opportunities. The 2012 cohort arranged meetings with officials from the State Department, the Federal Communications Commission, Capitol Hill, the Heritage Foundation, and the Search for Common Ground. Finally, participants develop plans to put their leadership skills to use by committing to complete a project that will have a measurable and positive impact on their communities. [View Spring 2012 schedule]