Challenge Your Thinking While Making a Difference
The Civic Leadership Institute (CLI) provides students a unique opportunity to explore current social and political issues through service-learning experiences, exchanges with community leaders, and academic study. Students build awareness and opinions, develop critical thinking skills through dialogue and debate, hone their leadership skills, and create an action plan on a topic of interest, encouraging them to make positive change.
The Civic Leadership Institute is a three-week course available through CTD's 6-12 Academic Summer Residential and Day Camps. See here for details on application, eligibility and tuition.
Why Choose CLI?
There has never been a more important time to explore your identity as a civic leader. CLI offers excellent preparation for college and careers and allows students to develop the leadership skills they need to make a difference in the world.
- An engaging three-week curriculum that tackles college-level course work on social concerns and methods of change
- Opportunities to learn from community members, professionals and leaders in the field about ways to make change
- A vibrant community to support and challenge you as you build skills to become a more active citizen
Through an advanced course in Service, Leadership & Community Transformation, challenge yourself to learn in new ways and apply your skills in real-world settings at CLI. View a sample syllabus.
CLI Curriculum Components
Examine issues through a critical lens. Absorb and engage in academic research and topic-focused presentations by instructors. Dialogue with peers to identify diverse viewpoints and consider new ideas.
Meetings with Community Partners
Learn from inspiring partners about their work, career path, and ideas about innovative approaches for meaningful change.
Process course material through guided questions and activities that broaden your perspective and build critical thinking skills.
Partner with a local non-profit or community organization. Get an orientation to their mission, and support their cause with hands-on projects or tasks while earning service hours. All in-person service-learning projects will adhere to CTD and Northwestern University COVID-19 safety protocols, in support of CDC guidelines; see details here.
Meet with government, business, and nonprofit leaders at the top of their fields to hear their experiences and path to making change.
Build communication, leadership, and problem-solving skills with classmates through instructor-led activities.
Select an area of interest and synthesize your learning through a plan for change under the mentorship of your instructional staff.
All students receive a detailed narrative evaluation after completion of the course. The evaluation provides feedback on the student’s achievements in the course and outlines areas for further growth. Evaluations are sent via e-mail and able to be accessed via MyCTD.
Student evaluations include certification of service hours earned. Learn more about service hours awarded by CEP programs.
CEP is happy to complete any forms required for students to show proof of completed service hours; contact our office for assistance.
For details regarding living on campus, daily schedules, and Covid-19 health and safety practices please visit here.
- For questions regarding CEP Program admissions and financial aid, please contact:
- For questions about current CEP Program enrollments, please contact:
- For questions about school partnerships with CEP Programs, please contact: