Sorensen Institute launches new leaders program

The Sorensen Institute today unveiled a new program designed to instruct and prepare Virginians who wish to continue their service to the Commonwealth.

The new Emerging Leaders Program was developed in partnership between the governor’s office and the Sorensen Institute during the spring of 2012. The pilot program will train public policy and political leaders in the Commonwealth. The program is a one-month leadership development program for early-career residents of Virginia who have worked in state government and are interested in becoming more active in public service and public policy, whether as community leaders or as elected or appointed officials in the executive or legislative branches.

The class meets in Colonial Williamsburg for two weekends in August and at the University of Richmond for two days in between the first and last weekends of the month.

The Emerging Leaders Program curriculum focuses on three core subject areas:

Ethics in Public Service: The program will include a study of general ethical principles as they relate to public service. We also explore Virginia’s conflict of interest laws and Freedom of Information Act. The practical application of bipartisan cooperation in politics, including the use of mediation techniques, is a central theme of the program.

Public Policy: Participants will engage in presentations and discussions of a variety of public policy issues facing state governments.

Policy Advocacy Skills: The program involves real-would exercises in creating and defending public policy initiatives. Topics include crafting new state policies to help veterans, ex-offenders returning to society from prison and promoting public and highway safety.

The application process is open to Virginia residents with a background in state government who are between the ages of 21 and 31. A commitment to fully participate in the eight days of the program is required. The application deadline will be Monday, June 11, 2012. Interviews of all applicants will be conducted in Richmond in mid-June. Applications, are available at www.sorenseninstitute.org/programs/elp/application


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