The Leadership Fellows Program, formally the Leadership Grant Program, has been active on Eastern’s campus since 1999.
While twenty students from each class have been involved in the program, most of the student body does not know about it.
The program was developed to aid aspiring leaders in the skills that they need to lead. Those in the program learn to “not be served but to serve…” as is stated in Matthew 20:28.
Each member is expected by his or her senior year to assume a leadership role on the campus. LFP members are encouraged to branch out and meet as many people on campus as they can.
In previous years, twenty students are picked from the applicants to participate in the program. These students need to show that they are hard working and willing to serve.
Because of the amount of students applying, many have been turned down because of the lack of space to fit everyone into the program.
Next year, this will change.
Along with the new name will come new faces. LFP will allow 40 entering first-years to join the program next fall, doubling its size. This change will allow for more diversity within the program.
Each year, one or two athletes and one or two students who are interested in art are invited to join.
Tess Bradley, the director of leadership development, hopes that vertical integration will now be able to occur between the first-years and the upperclass students in the program. This vertical integration will mean that the upperclass students will mentor the younger members of the program.
Traditions from years past will continue because of the bonds formed through the vertical integration. This is the biggest change that is occurring within the LFP.
It has taken Bradley a long time to be able to see this growth happen. Now that it is taking place, the only thing that she has to be worried about is what to do with all the new leaders. Bradley has heard only good things about the expansion, and it appears that many people are backing the change.
The new students were told at their first meeting, “You are here by the grace of God.” Keeping this in mind, even with the changes, the renamed, larger and integrated LFP will flourish and grow, making Eastern an even better place for incoming first-years.