The Gopher Leadership Academy is a yearlong initiative designed to engage sophomore and junior student athletes in leadership and professional development education.

Participants will work with a number of experts led by Toni Armstrong ’08, performance leadership consultant, and Andrew Wu, director of athletics.

September

Introductory session to review expectations, outcomes, leadership styles, diversity, equity, and inclusion, gender-based violence, and Community Principles.

October

DiSC Behavioral Assessment session with an NCAA Facilitator

November

Teammate support and the roles (and limits) of leadership—panel with current team captains

December

Organizational leadership and group dynamics

February

Sport and performance psychology—motivation, buy-in, and team culture

March

Career education and networking event with alumnae/i

April

Leaving a legacy—bring an emerging leader teammate session

May

Final project completion and discussion

SELECTION AND PARTICIPATION

Participants will be nominated by their teammates and coaching staffs, with one to three student athletes invited per athletic program. Participants will be expected to attend and actively participate in every session, remain in good academic and social standing at the college, and complete the final project. Graduates will be honored annually at the end of year Athletics Awards Ceremony. Head coaches will receive parallel trainings throughout the year.

FINAL PROJECT—LIVING JOURNAL

In the Spring 2019 semester, graduating track & field captain Taylor Gunter proposed a framework for a Living Journal that chronicles the experiences, lessons, and reflections of all team captains. In collaboration with their current team captains, Gopher Leadership Program participants will create entries that combine reflective accounts with individual and program aspirations.