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LEAD: Leading through Education, Activism, and Diversity

Students participating in LEAD

Overview of LEAD

The Leading Through Education, Activism and Diversity (LEAD) program is a collaborative effort led by the professional staff of the Asian American Activities Center (A3C), Black Community Services Center (BCSC), El Centro Chicano y Latino and the Native American Cultural Center (NACC).

LEAD is a two quarter program based on the Social Change Model of Leadership developed by Helen S. Astin and Alexander Astin of UCLA. The mission of LEAD seeks to develop the cross-cultural, collaborative leadership skills of leaders at Stanford by providing students with theoretical and real-life experiences in non-hierarchical leadership for the purpose of creating a shared vision for/and effecting social change.  By social change we mean collective efforts that empower individuals and communities to identify and address the underlying cause of social issues. Through focusing on leaders, the LEAD program will train students in the following areas, all of which contribute to creating a collaborative foundation towards building social change:

  • Leadership Development - Provide opportunities to prepare and practice becoming effective leaders to create effective movements for social change; 
  • Coalition Building—Learn skills in creating community alliances, establish ties between students from diverse backgrounds, and build a foundation for future collaborative work;
  • Culture— Understand the narratives of communities of color, contributions of communities of color at Stanford, and the influence politics has on culture. 

Students are required to attend a two-day off campus retreat where the model is taught and they are also challenged to apply the model to complete a social change project by the end of winter quarter.

LEAD alumni have gone on to become VSO and ASSU leaders and leaders in communities outside of Stanford.  Past LEAD projects include the creation of a Cultural Advising Associate staff position within Residential Education focused on diversity education; voter registration drives; diverse art exhibits/cultural performances; revision of the Stanford Acts of Intolerance protocol; and, "The Wall", a project designed to encourage campus wide discussion of issues of race and ethnicity.

Apply for LEAD!

Interested in participating in LEAD?  There are a few expectations to consider:


  • Sign up for a 2-unit credit/no credit course in both fall and winter
  • Attend course sessions on Tuesdays from 5-7PM in both fall and winter
  • Attend a two-day off campus retreat in Fall 2016 (Friday, November 4 - Saturday, November 5)
  • Complete social change group project

Please submit your completed application to the professional staff of one of the ethnic community centers or fill out the online application form by 10:00 am on Tuesday, September 20, 2016.  If you have any questions or would like more information, please contact the staff at one of the community centers.

Hiring Graduate Assistants for LEAD

The Asian American Activities Center (A3C), Black Community Services Center (BCSC), El Centro Chicano y Latino and Native American Cultural Center (NACC) are seeking four LEAD Graduate Assistants to help facilitate the LEAD Project, a leadership development course open to undergraduate students interested in exploring issues of collaboration across Stanford’s ethnic communities.  Find more information on how to be a LEAD Graduate Assistant through the position description and application page.