Each of us has the power to contribute to real systems change, an untangling of the programs, perspectives, and issues that create an environment that holds problems in place. The John T. Vucurevich Foundation Emerging Leaders program empowers participants to discover their role in addressing community issues and build the lasting, cross-sector relationships needed for systems change.
Throughout the year, leaders participate in a variety of gatherings: small group meetings, informational interviews, team exercises in creative thinking and problem solving, and trainings for the entire cohort.
Who is an Emerging Leader?
You! Too often we limit definitions of leadership by a specific set of qualifications, level of experience, status, or job title. Decisions that impact our community are made at all levels and everyone can contribute to change. So, if you live in the Rapid City area and care enough about an issue or situation to get involved, you are an Emerging Leader in our book. We look for motivated individuals from all sectors and walks of life.
What’s in it for participants?
This program brings together a diverse collection of perspectives, experiences, and worldviews to find mutual things to be excited about. In the end, Emerging Leaders create a strong network of people who care about each other and feel empowered and supported, whatever their personal or professional roles, to be the change they want to see in our community. They gain valuable tools on how to have conversations about how poverty, trauma, and Lakota culture and history impacts our community. Plus, we want this program to be accessible to all, so we pay our Emerging Leaders $1,000 to participate in the program.
“We talk about leadership in terms of an action one takes, not in terms of a position one holds. Leadership is about taking responsibility – both personal and social – for working with others on shared goals.”
– Paul Schmitz
This program lasts 12 months with the following commitments:
- 1 Cohort Retreat to establish relationships with fellow cohort members and learn about the John T. Vucurevich Foundation.
- 3 Cohort Sessions to build foundational knowledge in becoming poverty-informed, trauma-informed, and Lakota culture and history informed leaders and to showcase why these perspectives are important for anyone making decisions in our community.
- 1 Graduation to celebrate the end of the program and share learning lab insights as a project pitch.
- 1 Yearlong Learning Lab experience to design a hypothetical project as a way to explore and understand real issues in our community
We are taking the next few months to brainstorm our 6th cohort plans. Stay in the loop by joining our newsletter list at the bottom of the page for updates.