Leadership Schools for Unitarian Universalists

Leaders at the 2014 MidAmerica Midwest Leadership School.

Midwest Leadership School

The UU Institute - Online Leadership Development

Leading in congregations is more challenging than ever. We offer trainings that give you the tools you need in a flexible and affordable format.

  • Communicate: Every leader needs basic skills such as healthy communication, systems thinking, spiritual grounding and an understanding of the dynamics of conflict. Each of these trainings go deeper and deeper to help develop these skills.
  • Connect: Effective Leadership Development teams focus on recruiting and relationship building. By using our suite of leadership development trainings, you can spend less time on content and more on connection.
  • Explore: Training materials are divided into modules, available “on demand” as pre-recorded presentations with additional reading materials, discussion questions and other resources.
  • Achieve: The LeaderLab design team monitors discussion sections in these trainings and awards a certificate upon completion.

The Schools Listed Below Are Not Meeting Due to the Pandemic

Leadership Schools offer a learning experience that can be transformational. Schools range from whole weeks to long weekends to online versions. Each school has its own culture and format, some offered by regions and some offered nationally.

THRIVE: Leadership School for Youth and Young Adults of Color

  • Thrive leadership schools bring together Unitarian Universalist young people of color (People of African Descent, Caribbean, Native/American Indian, Asian and Pacific Islander, Latina/o and Hispanic, Middle Eastern/Arab, and Multiracial) to deepen their faith, nourish their spirits, and build critical skills for leadership.

Summer Seminary (Youth)

  • Summer Seminary is a program for Unitarian Universalist youth exploring the possibility of becoming a religious professional. Focusing on ordained ministry and credentialed leadership in religious education and music, the program offers youth the opportunity to explore their call to ministry in all its forms, learn about life as a religious professional, and connect with other youth considering ministry, religious education and other religious professional career paths.

Pacific Western Region

  • Goldmine is an intense leadership school for youth focusing on self-reflection and leadership skills. Youth learn concrete leadership skills, learn to lead a worship in a wide variety of youth worship styles, and work to articulate the faith based grounding for their values and leadership. The day includes youth led worship, silent self-reflection time, and small group reflection time in addition to time for hanging out and playing together! The school is taught by pairs of youth and adult co-trainers. Youth co-trainers are former Goldmine students.
  • PWR Leadership Experience is a hybrid in-person/online learning experience. Participants will meet for a weekend retreat in one of three locations. Participants will then have eight follow-up 90-minute video conference calls by Zoom. There will also be an optional gathering for all participants at UUA General Assembly.This program will be ideal for board members or other individuals in leadership positions within a congregation. Congregations are also strongly encouraged to send people who are being considered for future leadership positions. Ministers and other religious professionals may also attend.

Southern Region

  • Two Leadership opportunities, The Dwight Brown Leadership Experience (DBLE) offered in Texas in the summer and the Southern UU Leadership Experience (SUULE) offered in the southeast in the winter, are challenging, exciting, leadership development experiences that will enrich the life of the participants, as well as enhance the sponsoring Unitarian Universalist congregation. DBLE is named after the District Executive who helped launch our first Leadership School.Both schools are designed to teach and reinforce skills and abilities for leaders and leaders-to-be in UU congregations.

MidAmerica Region

  • MidWest Leadership School (MWLS), held concurrently with MidWest Youth Leadership School, develops lay leaders in the UU community. The week-long intense program includes leadership, group and system dynamics, UU history and theology, and elements of worship. The program is designed to provide insights, confidence, and enrichment for each participant’s congregation, work, and personal life. MWLS is sponsored by the MidAmerica Region.

Central East Region

  • Goldmine is an intense leadership school for youth focusing on self-reflection and leadership skills. Youth learn concrete leadership skills, learn to lead a worship in a wide variety of youth worship styles, and work to articulate the faith based grounding for their values and leadership. The day includes youth led worship, silent self-reflection time, and small group reflection time in addition to time for hanging out and playing together! The school is taught by pairs of youth and adult co-trainers. Youth co-trainers are former Goldmine students.
  • (The UU Leadership Team Institute—or UULTI—has been replaced by the UU Leadership Institute described above.)