Leadership Studies Program
Morehouse College has been producing outstanding leaders for more than 150 years. The Leadership Studies Program in the Andrew Young Center for Global Leadership serves as a designated space and place to analyze and contest, to examine and explore, to learn and teach about social-justice-oriented leadership in an interdisciplinary and collaborative manner.
It will not be sufficient for Morehouse College, for any college, for that matter, to produce clever graduates—but rather honest men, men who can be trusted in public and private life—men who are sensitive to the wrongs, the sufferings, and the injustices of society and who are willing to accept responsibility for correcting those ills.Benjamin E. Mays, President of Morehouse College from 1940 to 1967,
The Leadership Studies Program is devoted to this mission. The threefold purpose of education for Mays, writes one of his biographers, “was to train the mind to think clearly, logically and constructively; to train the heart to understand and sympathize with the aspirations, the sufferings, and injustices of mankind; and to strengthen the will to act in the interest of the common good.” The Andrew Young Center in general and the Leadership Studies Program, in particular, are conscientiously committed to producing Morehouse Men who choose to serve as ethical leaders in the ongoing struggle for freedom and justice for all.
Although the socio-ethical leadership model at Morehouse College is often associated with President Mays, our leadership development model draws heavily also on other luminaries among our alumni, especially Howard Thurman (’23) and Martin Luther King, Jr. (’48). The AYCGL Leadership Studies program is also beholden to the namesake of the Center, namely, Ambassador Andrew Young, who characterizes Morehouse College as a "leadership factory," one that produced social-justice-oriented leaders from Thurman and King to Julian Bond and Maynard Jackson.
The Pedagogical Methods
Academic excellence and ethical integrity exemplify the ideal of socioethical leadership at Morehouse. Mays, Thurman, and King embody this ideal, certainly, but it is exemplified in the lives of other Morehouse alumni as well. An interdisciplinary team of faculty developed the recently revised Leadership Studies Minor curriculum. Our Leadership Studies Minor emphasizes social-justice-oriented leadership. The Leadership Studies Program emphasizes what is sometimes called "servant leadership," i.e., leadership aimed at empowering or otherwise serving others and "correcting societal inequalities." We find precedent for this model of leadership in Carter Woodson, who encouraged us in his "Miseducation of the Negro" (1933) to "translate the idea of leadership into that of service." The Leadership Studies Program relies heavily on problem-based learning, experiential learning, and service learning. The Leadership Studies Program reflects the unique mission of Morehouse College. The pedagogical ideal of socioethical leadership is preoccupied with questions of a sensitive heart, a disciplined will, and a logical mind.
Leadership Studies Curriculum Requirements
It is recommended that students begin the course sequence (i.e., HLS 101/111 and HLS 201) leading to a minor in leadership studies during their freshman or sophomore year. The 17-hour curriculum is comprised of five three-credit-hour courses, plus a sequence of two one-credit-hour capstone modules. The leadership studies minor begins with either HLS 101(FYE) “Social Justice Leadership,” or HLS 111 “Introduction to Black Leadership”; each of which serves as a gateway to the minor and a prerequisite to the second core course, viz., HLS 201, “History and Theories of Leadership.” Additionally, students will select three elective courses (nine hours), not more than one course (three hours) from any discipline: Elective courses are available in HLS (e.g., HLS 301, HLS 412, HLS 414, HLS 455, and HLS 475) as well as a predetermined list of minor electives from disciplines outside HLS. The final requirement of the HLS minor consists in the completion of a service leadership capstone project comprised of a two-semester sequence (HLS 465 and HLS 466), either in the junior or senior years, of two one-credit hour courses.