The Emerging Leaders Program: How First Semester and Transfer Students are Making an Impact in the Community

The Emerging Leaders Program (ELP) is a fall semester Binghamton University microcredential program designed specifically for new first-year and transfer students to develop and practice effective leadership skills. While forming valuable connections within the University and local community, ELP participants interact with student mentors and faculty/staff program advisors to explore leadership through specific interest-based Knowledge Communities (KC's).

ELP member works with elementary school student
ELP member works with elementary school student

 This semester, Global Awareness and Citizenship (GAC) Knowledge Community students collaborated with Vestal Hills Elementary School. ELP students worked to identify the wide range of cultures most highly represented in the elementary school. As a result of these findings, ELP students planned and hosted a Multicultural Fair as part of their fall-semester Service Learning Project.

Upon entering the elementary school, K-5 students and their prospective families were greeted by ELP students with a personalized “passport.” Each passport mapped out six interactive stations where the students had to complete various activities associated with a specific country in order to travel the world. From creating Chinese Lanterns and Bengali masks to learning Indian yoga poses and even eating authentic Kurdish foods, the elementary students could participate in various sports, arts & crafts and games at each table organized by the GAC members. 

ELP members pose with elementary school students for a group phoot

Shruti Venkatesh ‘25, mentor for the Global Awareness and Citizenship Knowledge Community, raves about the impact of the Emerging Leaders Program during her time at Binghamton University. “Having lived in Binghamton my whole life, it’s great to see other students with similar experiences,” says Venkatesh. “Our ELP students feel pride in making a meaningful impact and difference in the lives of others.”

The Emerging Leaders Program hosts many events and projects, most notably in the fall semester. Returning students, first-semester first-year and transfer students are encouraged to get involved with ELP. Interested mentors and mentees can contact ELP’s director, Tyler Lenga