Areas of Study Schedule A Visit Virtual Tour Request Info Apply Now

Two organizations become one center: Building the Aleshire Center for Leadership and Community Engagement

In the year 2000, The Institute for the Study and Practice of Leadership was founded on Washburn University's campus to provide a select group of students with the opportunity to learn and practice leadership through offerings of scholarships and a certificate. In 2009, the institute was rebranded to officially become the Leadership Institute (LI) which offered an increased number of opportunities to students including more scholarships, an academic minor and co-curricular programs. Some of these programs include the Leadership Challenge Event™ (2011 - present), the High School Leadership Academy (2017 - 2021), and the Student Leadership Council (2010 - 2024). This expansion allowed for the Institute to welcome any student interested in leadership to develop their skills and expand their educational opportunities outside of their academic major.

Learning in the Community (LinC) was founded on Washburn's campus in 1995 by a student, Stacy Tucker. The organization focused on civic engagement in the local community. In 2006, LINC officially became an academic unit through the creation of the Washburn Transformational Experience and was able to offer courses in community and civic engagement. This change led to the Civic Engagement - Poverty Studies minor being founded during the 2012 - 2013 school year. LINC didn't stop there; they went on to develop more co-curricular opportunities for students. The most notable include the Bonner Scholar, which is a national program that can be found on many campuses across the United States, and Bods Feeding Bods, a campus founded food pantry created to serve all Washburn students on all four campuses by providing quick meals and other supplies that students may need.

In 2023, an idea to merge the LI and LINC created The Aleshire Center for Leadership and Civic Engagement thanks to the generous endowment from longtime leadership supporters, Joe and Janet Aleshire. Leadership from both programs believed that by merging they would be able to provide more support, opportunity, and engagement to students. The center officially launched in the summer of 2024 with the goal to develop leaders through high-impact, community-engaged learning experiences. The center resides at 1731 Plass.



back to top button