Loyola University Chicago

Division of Student Development

LEAD for Change

The "LEAD for Change" program takes place prior to Welcome Week. Students living on campus receive special permission to move into their residence hall rooms early, the morning of Monday, August 21st. Commuter students can meet us on campus that same day in the early afternoon. We'll all travel to the retreat center together. Students return to the Lake Shore Campus in the afternoon on Thursday, August 24th in time for all Welcome Week activities. Please see some of our photos and quotations from past participants in the slideshow at the top of the page for more information.

We are currently at full capacity for our 2017 LEAD experience. If you have questions, please contact Shannon Howes or call 773-508-2152.

The “LEAD for Change” program is designed for new students with a passion for working collaboratively with others to accomplish common goals focused on positive change. Through engaging activities, participation in a challenge course, a camp fire, and discussions, participants will deepen their learning about leadership while making new friends. The program supports growth in the areas of self-awareness, teamwork, and leadership skills.


Staff and student mentors will provide information about campus and community leadership opportunities, and will help students engage with the Loyola community. No previous leadership experience is necessary; we all have the potential to engage in the leadership process. All that is required is an interest in learning, willingness to participate in group activities in a supportive environment, and an enthusiastic, open-minded attitude. This program is designed for students who are new to Loyola University Chicago.

"I liked that we formed a very tight-knit community in addition to finding our strengths in Leadership… We all started at a common point of not knowing what to expect, and as we went through the LEAD experience, we all trusted each other and genuinely created bonds of friendship that not many people can say that they have. We're not just friends; we're family."


"I am really happy with my decision to go on this retreat! It was not only though-provoking, but also a great way to meet some amazing people. I would recommend this retreat to other students because the activities are well organized and super enjoyable. You will constantly be entertained and challenged."


"I absolutely loved this retreat. I have done many leadership events before in and out of school. This one did a really good job of letting myself and the rest of the group explore their own part in leadership and then put it in action."


"I came back to campus a new person after the LEAD retreat. I was able to quickly connect with peers and discover the leadership qualities within me."


**The Division of Student Development strives to support the university’s mission by offering programs that foster leadership development, as well as by serving and supporting students as they experience the personal transformations of a Jesuit education. With that in mind, some staff resources have recently been reallocated. As a result, at the end of the 2017-2018 academic year, there will no longer be a stand-alone unit that exists for the sole purpose of coordinating student leadership development programs. Starting in the 2018-2019 academic year, ELP will be housed within SAGA, and The People’s Institute will be housed within SDMA. The Leadership for Social Change Learning Community will continue to be coordinated by ResLife, with Shannon Howes serving as the administrative partner for this program. Students are encouraged to connect with these three programs, as well as with the many additional student leadership development experiences that exist in other areas on campus.**