First-Year Leadership Institute


The First-Year Leadership Institute is one of the premier leadership development opportunities offered to first-year students at the University of Minnesota. Student leaders are an essential part of the U of M community. These leaders can be found all over campus as officers of student organizations, Orientation Leaders, and in-and-around the University community. However, being a good leader doesn't happen by accident. The First-Year Leadership Institute is designed to help build the leadership skills of current student leaders on campus.

First-Year Leadership Institute (FYLI) is a cohort-based, intensive leadership development program designed for incoming U of M students who are enthusiastic, curious, and empowered to begin their leadership journey on the U of M campus! The program focuses on developing students’ self-awareness around leadership ideas and competencies as related to personal passion, group development, and contribution to the greater good.

Program Structure

Each year, a select group of 30 first-year students will join this semester-long program that is designed to enhance leadership skills, foster intrapersonal, interpersonal, ethical and moral development, and connect first-year students to the University of Minnesota and the surrounding communities. The program will begin in the Spring semester for admitted participants. At the beginning of the semester, students will spend two days at a team building retreat. During the course of the rest of the semester, students will be required to attend Wednesday night meetings, meet with a mentor, and work on a campus engagement project.

How to Apply

During Fall semester of every year, first-year students are invited to complete and submit an application for admittance into the program. It is important to stress that prior leadership experience is not a prerequisite. After an initial screening process, students will be invited to participate in a group interview. Selected students will be invited to participate in the program.

Interested? Learn more about the First-Year Leadership Institute or apply here