Student Leadership at Mercer
What does it mean to be a leader at Mercer University?
Student Leadership Mission Statement
Mercer University fosters an environment that challenges every student to engage in leadership opportunities that educate and advance them as servant leaders.
Mercer Student Leadership Model
The model above depicts the components that comprise student leadership on the campus of Mercer University. The model shows the three levels of student leadership involvement (Emerging, Experiential and Advanced), guided by the three core values (Service, Integrity and Advocacy). That entity is encompassed by the Social Change Model of Leadership Development (Astin & Astin 1996). All components of the model are described below.
Student Leadership Involvement
These three tiers of involvement encompass many, if not most, Mercer students. These categories specify areas in which Mercer students participate, organize, develop and/or engage their fellow students on campus.
- Emerging: This is the most fundamental level of student leadership involvement.
- Experiential: This level of student leadership involvement includes a variety of experiences that allow Mercer students to have hands on experience with leadership activities and responsibilities.
- Advanced: This highest level of student leadership involvement is achieved by students who have a desire to learn, lead and achieve. This group of students hold the highest leadership positions, influence the development of various leadership opportunities for other students and look to expand their leadership abilities well past the Mercer community.
The following values have been identified as cornerstones for the development of our student leaders.
- Service: To elevate service to others above one's own self interest.
- Integrity: To act honestly and responsibly while promoting ethical principles on the part of one's own organization.
- Advocacy: To empower students to act as social change agents for the campus and community at large.
Social Change Model of Leadership Development
This framework, originally developed by Astin & Astin (1996)*, helps guide the formation of student leaders on campus. As depicted in the model above, there are three areas that coincide with our concept of student leadership. These areas utilize the "seven C's," which include:
- Group Values: Collaboration, Common Purpose, Civility
- Societal & Community Values: Citizenship
- Individual Values: Consciousness of Self, Congruence, Commitment
Goals for Student Leadership
The following goals have been identified to promote the mission and core values for student leadership at Mercer.
- To help all students develop the skills, values and knowledge necessary for effective servant leadership roles.
- To provide co-curricular opportunities that allow for civic engagement, leadership development and community service.
- To support high achieving students within their leadership roles and responsibilities.
- To enable students to utilize experiences acquired through Mercer programs for post-graduate service opportunities.
- To assist students in developing their own philosophy of leadership.
Current Student Leadership Opportunities
- Current Leadership Positions at Mercer
- Center for Leadership and Volunteerism
- Leadership Series and Events (Leadership MU, Catalyst, Mercer Student Leadership Retreat and more)
- Leadership Certificate Program (currently in planning phase)
- Freshman Leadership Experience (currently in planning phase)
- Mercer Service Scholars
- Social Entrepreneurship Program
*Astin, Helen S. and Alexander W. Astin. A Social Change Model of Leadership Development Guidebook Version III. The National Clearinghouse of Leadership Programs, 1996.