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Current LP Students

Our Generous Supporters

and special thanks to the Texas BBA Parents Council

Leadership Program students create positive social change on the UT campus, in the Austin community, and abroad.

First-Year Students

The first-year students will go on the leadership program retreat, learn about their strengths through StrengthsQuest, and find their way in the dark using teamwork and smarts! They will examine the concept of self-leadership and resilience with Dr. Mary Steinhardt.

Second-Year Students

The second-year students will do a manufacturing simulation with Dr. Doug Dierking and learn to be more effective leaders and team members with Dr. Ethan Burris. They will learn how to effectively manage organizational conflict and help groups reach agreement with Mary Thompson of Corder/Thompson & Associates.

Third-Year Students

The third-year students will connect with the Austin community with the help of Leadership Austin. They will delve into the topics of education and healthcare in Central Texas, visiting and performing community service for Ann Richards School for Young Women Leaders, Webb Middle School and Foundation Communities

Fourth-Year Students

The fourth-year students will participate in sessions to prepare them to be global leaders and an opportunity for a business service learning trip in Belize with their guides: Gary Hoover, Dr. Orlando Kelm, LP students who went last year, and a representative from Peacework. They will create curriculum for a vocational school in Belize, helping students with business plans in order to secure micro-loans for themselves. 

2014-2015 LP Manual of Information

How to Successfully Complete the Leadership Program

Four-year program

  • Six out of eight Leadership Program Events over four years, submit reflection for each
  • Four unique Leadership Development Activity categories per year, submit reflection for each
  • Capstone Choice:  Enroll in BA321L “Contemporary Leadership.” For more details, see the BA 321L 2012 Syllabus-OR- write a 3,750-5,000 critical review essay (see Paper Guidelines tab).
  • Leadership Program Flow Chart – four-year track only of a four-year progression through LP.

Three-year program

  • Five of  Leadership Program Events over three years, submit reflection for each
  • 4 unique Leadership Development Activity categories per year, submit reflection for each
  • Capstone Choice:  Enroll in BA321L “Contemporary Leadership.” For more details, see the BA 321L 2012 Syllabus -OR- write a 3,750-5,000 critical review essay (see Paper Guidelines tab).
  • Leadership Program Flow Chart – three-year track only of a three-year progression through LP.

Reflections – After each LP event and leadership development activity (LDA), you must submit a reflection through the tracker system. The reflection must be on par with college-level writing standards and include what you did, what you learned, and how the activity connects to leadership and the social change model.  We suggest that you write LP Event and LDA reflections within a week of completing the activity.  Reflections will be reviewed by Leadership Program staff for approval. Submissions are open from September 1, 2013 through April 15, 2013. If you are a graduating senior, your submission deadline will be earlier.  Reflection Examples

LP Event – The Office of Student Life will coordinate one LP Event per semester to fulfill LP Event credit (formerly called UPO events).  Students must complete either 6 of 8 LP events over four years (students who begin LP as freshmen), or five of six LP events over three years (students who begin LP as sophomores).  NOTE: If you study abroad during a semester or have an MPA internship and miss an LP mandatory event, your reflection will count as the LP Event for that semester

LP Events include:

  • First Year Theme: Individual – Fall Overnight Retreat/Spring Self-Leadership & Resiliency Training 
  • Second Year Theme: Organizational – Fall Simulation/Spring Conflict Mediation
  • Third Year Theme: Institutional – Fall Community Issue - Education/Spring Community Issue - Affordability 
  • Fourth Year Theme: Global – Fall Global Citizenship/Spring Global Trip

Leadership Development Activity (LDA) – Leadership Program students are required to complete reflections for four unique LDA’s each year. Students may submit up to 10 LDA’s each year to be included in their portfolio. Each of the four mandatory LDA’s must come from a different category to fulfill the requirement. For example, a student may submit a class, organization, book review, and community service LDA.  The student may not submit a class, an organization and two book reviews.

Categories include:

  • Classes - Courses related to leadership, ethics, personal development, conflict-management, social change and/or communication.  Students may also view a list of Suggested Courses
  • Organizations - Active membership for at least one semester in a registered UT Organization.  You may submit reflections for the same organization once per year that you are in the program.  The reflection that you submit for each year in the organization must reflect the theme of the LP year – individual, organizational, community/institutional and global.
  • Conferences/Retreats – Attendance to a full-day conference related to leadership, ethics, personal development, conflict management, social change and/or communication with at least six hours of participation.
  • Book Reviews – Approved books may be checked out from the Office of Student Life Leadership Library (CBA 2.302).  Additional books related to leadership, ethics, social change and other relevant topics may be used.
  • Community Service – Volunteer shift must be at least four consecutive hours or be 4 hours over a period of time doing the same activity (e.g. tutoring at the library). Focus on meaningful service projects which avoid administrative dues, such as assisting with registrations or mail-outs.
  • Lecture Series – Attend 3 lectures through the McCombs VIP Distinguished Speaker Series, the Ethics and Corporate Responsibility Speakers Series, Student Activities Leadership and Ethics Institute series, 321L or other lectures not listed.  
  • Other Activity – Examples include participation in an internship, work-study or a full-time job.  We recommend seeking pre-approval prior to submitting an “other” activity.

Try to stretch yourself – read a book on leadership for the first time, or participate in a new community service project. Also, keep an eye out for emails from the Leadership Program for opportunities for Leadership Development Activity (LDA) credit.

Tracker System -  All reflections (both LDA and LP Events) will be submitted through the LP Tracker


1.  Attendance at LP Events - All 4 Year participants of the program must attend and write reflections for 6 of the 8 LP Events offered during their time at McCombs.  All 3 Year participants of the program must attend and write reflections for 5 of the 6 LP Events offered during their time at McCombs.

2.  Excused Cancellation- In the event you cannot attend a required program or have a last minute cancellation to an already registered event, only the following excused cancellations will be accepted:  religious observances, sudden illness, death in the family or another situation determined on a case by case basis.  Due to the time and cost in planning programs, registration for an event implies attendance.  Event cancellations will not be accepted unless they reflect an excused absence.  Repetitive unexcused cancellations or no-shows may affect a student’s continued participation the program.

3.  Reflections – Students must submit reflections to receive credit for Leadership Development Activities (LDA’s) and Leadership Program Events (LP Events).  The reflections need to speak to what you have learned, how the activity/event ties into leadership, and the connection to the “C” category you list from the Seven C’s of the Social Change Model.  Reflections should be of college-level writing skills, and at least a long paragraph.  LP Staff will review the reflections, and determine if you receive credit for the LDA or LP Event.  Here are examples of some outstanding reflections.

4.  Tracker System - All students must upload LDA and LP Event reflections through the LP Tracker System.  Please upload reflections within a week of completing the LDA or LP Event.  The due date for all reflections will be the last class day of the Spring semester.

5.  Capstone Course – To complete the Leadership Program, students must also complete BA 321L – Contemporary Leadership Issues.  Students will review leadership cases from famous writings and learn from in-class guest speakers.  Juniors and Seniors will be allowed to register for this course with permission from the Dean’s Office.  Please contact with any questions about this course.

6.  Study Abroad – If you study abroad during a fall or spring semester, your study abroad experience will count as your LP Event for the semester.  Students will still be required to complete the same amount of LP Events depending on their track in the program.

7. Semester Long Internships – If you are an MPA student and will do your internship in the Spring, or you are involved in another internship program that lasts all semester and is out of Austin, you may count this as an LP event. You should contact us at and let us know as soon as you can so we can make accommodations in the tracker. The internship required for graduation as any other major can count as an “other” LDA.

Also check out the “Completing LP” Section!

Paper Guidelines

If you are in the final year of LP, you must choose either the capstone course, 321L OR  a paper on a leadership topic in order to complete the program.

Writing Assignment

Step 1: Choose a leadership topic.

Examples are listed below. You may want to browse our leadership library for ideas.

  • Leadership and business
  • Leadership and the military
  • Leadership and politics
  • Leadership and education
  • Women and leadership
  • Social Change leadership
  • Your Choice

Submit your topic for approval to

Step 2: Write a critical review essay.

Submit a critical review essay of about 3750-5000 words (about 15-20 double-spaced pages, 12-point font) in which you review three books of your choice related to your topic and synthesize the material and present connections to the social change model of leadership.

Your essay should do the following:

  • Briefly summarize the material presented in your three books (this should not be the focus of the paper)
  • Identify how your topic is relevant to the study and practice of leadership
  • Argue connections to the social change model of leadership
  • Demonstrate links to other experiences you have encountered through the Leadership Program
  • Explain how what you read and learned is relevant to your study and practice of leadership
  • Describe how you will lead or follow differently as a result of this essay

You will need to submit an outline and then a draft of your essay to  A schedule of due dates is listed below.

Assignment Guide

1. Select a Topic,

For example: Leadership in Business

2. Submit your topic for approval to

3. Select your 3 books for review and submit for approval.

For example:

  • Kouzes, J. & Posner, B. (1993).  The Leadership Challenge:  How To Keep Getting Extraordinary Things Done in Organizations. Chicago:  McGraw-Hill-Irwin.
  • Collins, J. (2001) Good to Great. New York:  HarperCollins.
  • Walton, S. (1992).  Sam Walton: Made In America.  New York: Doubleday.

4.  Submit your outline of a critical review essay of 3,750 – 5,000 words of how they relate to your topic and the social change model.

5.  Submit your first draft for review to

6.  Submit your second draft for review to

7.  Review and edit your final draft. Submit your essay by the due date.

2014-2015 Assignment Due Dates

December Graduates:

  • September 10        Submit your topic for approval
  • September 17        Submit your list of 3 (three) books for approval
  • October 3               Submit outline for approval
  • October 22             Submit first draft for approval
  • November 5           Submit second draft for approval
  • November 16         Final paper due

 May Graduates:

        • September 10        Submit your topic for approval
  • September 17        Submit your list of 3 (three) books for approval
  • October 3               Submit outline for approval
  • December 1           Submit first draft for approval
  • January 21             Submit second draft for approval
  • March 2                  Final paper due

Helpful Links:

Questions to ask yourself - Reflection as a learning tool

Concrete Experience.  Describe a specific situation when you had an experience that relates to leadership as it has been described to you (Social, Change, Leadership or Development)?  What happened?  What details stand out to you?  Describe briefly the situation, what you did and how you felt.

Reflective Observation.   Why did this situation have the outcomes it did?  What caused the situation to occur in the first place?  What responses from you and from others worked in the situation?  Why was that effective?  What did not work?  Why?

Abstract Conceptualization.   What lessons can you draw from this specific experience that could apply more generally?  Given both your reflections on previous Leadership Development Activities and Leadership Program events, what would you create for handling future situations like this?

Active Experimentation.   What opportunities might you seek out that would give you the chance to apply what you have learned here?  How might you test the lessons or guidelines you created in your Abstract Conceptualization exercise to see if they work?

Komives, S.R. (2009).  Leadership for a Better World: Understanding the Social Change Model of Leadership Development. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

As you input your Leadership Development Activities (LDA) and Leadership Program Events (LP Events) into the Tracker system, you will also reflect on what you learned through the activity or event in relation to the social change model of leadership and your own personal development. The approved reflection is what you will receive credit for – not just completing the activity or attending the event.

To get you in the reflecting mindset, here are a couple of examples of outstanding reflections from Allison Darden4th year LP:

LDA – Book Review: A Leader’s Legacy by James M. Kouzes and Barry Z. Posner was a very insightful and enlightening book. It put many leadership questions into perspective by using stories of well-grounded leaders and their many difficult challenges as leaders. The book was surrounded around exploring the question of leadership and legacy. It was organized into four categories: Significance, Relationships, Aspirations and Courage. Each of the four categories describes the necessities of being a leader, from scarifies to courage to accepting critics from others. The book was focused around what legacy leaders will leave behind. It referred to leaders, not as someone who is organizational and out-spoken, but as someone who hopes to make a difference in the world. One of my favorite chapters in the book was Chapter 20: Failure is Always an Option. This put into perspective that leaders are not, and will not, always be perfect. Every leader learns from their mistakes and failures during their leadership. The chapter discussed the difference between probability and possibility, because many times, the improbable is still possible in regards to a great leader. When referring to the seven C’s of the Social Change Model, Congruence is the word I thought about when I was reading this book. Congruence is thinking, feeling and behaving with consistency, genuineness, authenticity and honesty towards others. It is important for all leaders to be congruent with their activities and followers during their leadership process. According to the book, a leader needs to be trusted by its followers in order to receive full support and confidence in their work. A leader must be congruent with its followers in order to fulfill their aspiration to make a difference in the world.

LP Event: The UPO Leadership Panel and Interpersonal Communication Program was an informative and effective day for all LCP members. It gave the LCP members a chance to ask each member of the panel questions about their profession as well as the necessity of leadership in their profession. Each member of the panel had different stories and backgrounds, from a person who works in a non-profit company to a representative from Dell computers. It was interesting to hear how each member of the panel progressed up the ladder in profession. The Leadership Panel revealed to me more about consciousness of self, when referring to the seven C’s of the Social Change Model. Consciousness of self is being aware of the beliefs, values, attitudes and emotions that motivate one to take action. One of the interpersonal communication activities we performed was trying to have a complete and clear conversation with others, without saying “umm”or “like” between phrases. This made me realize what I needed to work on myself in order to become a clear communicator in the business world and in everyday communication. The Leadership Panel and Interpersonal Communication Program was a very encouraging program for all LCP members. It will help me to become a better communicator as well as increase my dedication towards my work.

Leadership Library List

The following books are available in the Leadership Library (CBA 2.302) for students to borrow. Reading and reflecting on one of the following books will count as an LDA. If you have any questions, please email

A Leader’s Legacy
A Simpler Way
All the President’s Men
Asian American Dreams: The Emergence of an American People
Autobiography of Malcolm X
Awakening the Leader Within: A Story of Transformation
Barbara Jordan: An American Hero
Breaking the Glass Ceiling: Can Women Reach the Top of America’s Largest Corporations?
Breaking The Glass Ceiling: Sexism and Racism in Corporate America: The Myths, The Realities & the Solutions
Class Matters
Closing the Leadership Gap: Why Woman Can and Must Help Run the World
Critical Lessons: What Our Schools Should Teach
Deeper Learning in Leadership: Helping College Students Find the Potential Within
Defining Moments: When Managers Must Choose Between Right and Right
Designing Dynamic Organizations: A Hands-on Guide for Leaders at All Levels
Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us
Emotionally Intelligent Leadership: A Guide for College Students
Encouraging the Heart: A Leader’s Guide to Rewarding and Recognizing Others
Ethics for the New Millennium
Executive EQ
Exploring Leadership: For College Students Who Want to Make a Difference
Fierce Conversations: Achieving Success at Work and in Life One Conversation at a Time
Finding Your Voice: Learning to Lead . . . Anywhere You Want to Make a Difference
First In His Class: A Biography Of Bill Clinton
From Worst to First: Behind the Scenes of Continental's Remarkable Comeback
Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In
Good Business: Leadership, Flow, and the Making of Meaning
Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap...and Others Don't
How: Why How We Do Anything Means Everything…in Business and in Life
How Good People Make Tough Choices: Resolving the Dilemmas of Ethical Living
Invitation to Lead: Guidance for Emerging Asian American Leaders
It Doesn’t Take a Hero: The Autobiography of General H. Norman Schwarzkopf
Jack: Straight for the Gut
Leadership and the New Science: Learning About Organization from an Orderly Universe
Leading Change
Leading Teams: Setting the Stage for Great Performance
Leading Through Conflict: How Successful Leaders Transform Differences into Opportunities
Like a Hurricane: The Indian Movement from Alcatraz to Wounded Knee
Madam Secretary: A Memoire
Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Some Don’t
Making Gay History: The Half Century Fight for Lesbian and Gay Equal Rights
Making Strategy Work: Leading Effective Execution and Change
Masterful Coaching
Mother Teresa: A Complete Authorized Biography
Only the Paranoid Survive
Organizational Culture and Leadership
Power: Why Some People Have It and Others Don't
Primal Leadership: Learning to Lead with Emotional Intelligence
Salsa, Soul, and Spirit: Leadership for a Multicultural Age
Servant: A Simple Story about the True Essence of Leadership
Servants of the People: The 1960s Legacy of African American Leadership
Smartest Guys in the Room: The Amazing Rise and Scandalous Fall of Enron
Stewardship: Choosing Service Over Self Interest
The Art of Possibility: Transforming Professional and Personal Life
The Autobiography of Martin Luther King, Jr.
The Conscience of the Campus: Case Studies in Moral Reasoning Among Today’s College Students
The Essential Gandhi: An Anthology of His Writings on His Life, Work, and Ideas
The Exception Presenter: A Proven Formula to Open Up and Own the Room
The Female Advantage
The G Quotient: Why Gay Executives are Excelling as Leaders… And What Every Manager Needs to Know
The Leadership Challenge Planner
The Leadership Challenge, 4th Edition
The No Asshole Rule: Building a Civilized Workplace and Surviving One That Isn’t
The One Thing You Need to Know
The Other 90%: How to Unlock Your Vast Untapped Potential for Leadership and Life
The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business
The Practice of Adaptive Leadership: Tools and Tactics for Changing Your Organization and the World
The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference
The Wizard and the Warrior: Leading with Passion and Power
The World Cafe: Shaping Our Futures Through Conversations That Matter
The World is Flat: A Brief History of the Twenty-First Century
Thinking, Fast and Slow
Turning to One Another: Simple Conversations to Restore Hope to the Future
Virtual Teams: Reaching Across Space, Time, and Organizations With Technology
Voices of Diversity
Virtual Teams: Reaching Across Space, Time, and Organizations With Technology
Walking with the Wind: A Memoir of the Movement
What Got You Here Won't Get You There: How Successful People Become Even More Successful
Why CEO’s Fail: The 11 Behaviors That Can Derail Your Climb to the Top and How to Manage Them


Leadership Development Activities Resources

If you need assistance finding your Leadership Development Activities, please see the links below:

Book Review

The Office of Student Life offers the Leadership Library


Please see our list of approved courses

Community Service 

Volunteer shift must be at least four hours.

Conferences and Retreats

The Office of Student Life will send email notices about upcoming student conferences. If you have any suggestions of conferences, please email us.


Study Abroad

Students who study abroad can reflect on their experience as an LDA. However, if the student misses a mandatory LP event in the fall or spring semester due to studying abroad, they must reflect on the experience, and an LP Staff member will count it for the missed event. This means that typically study abroad experiences will count as an LDA if it takes place over the summer or an inter-session. Ask an LP staff member if you have any questions.  

Lecture Series 

Attend three lectures through the many UT and McCombs Lecture Series available. Check the Know Events Calendar on the UT page, VIP Distinguished Speaker Series page, or the Leadership and Ethics Institute Series


Other LDA activities include internships, study abroad experiences, work-study, jobs, special lectures/activities presented by the LP Staff. Keep an eye on the blog for upcoming LDA Other opportunities.

LP on your Resume

As a member of LP, you can expect that recruiters will ask about your experiences and the values you've gained through the program. Your resume and contact information will also be provided to LP's corporate sponsors. It is important that you always list the Leadership Program on your resume and keep it updated. Click here to see an LP Resume Example and to learn where it best fits on the document.

If you ever have questions about your resume, please contact BBA Career Services for advice and assistance.