GLLA - Leadership Advancement Program

Leadership Taken to a New Level

The Great Lakes Leadership Academy Leadership Advancement Program is designed for leaders who are committed to strengthening their skills and empowering their communities. The Leadership Advancement Program will broaden the participant’s knowledge base and their professional network while helping them to understand the role and influence of government and special interests on issues affecting their lives and communities.

 The Leadership Advancement Program includes:

  • 12 sessions (40 days within 18 months) at various sites across Michigan
  •  Classroom and experiential learning
  •  Exposure to emerging issues in Michigan through hands-on learning
  •  Broadened perspectives through exposure to societal, economic, and cultural differences
  •  A forum for diverse perspectives
  •  State and national travel
  •  Ongoing networking, training, and support of alumni

Beyond Books and Lectures

A key element of the program will be the creation of Regional Teams. These teams will explore a region of Michigan (for example, Southeast Michigan) beginning by convening all the GLLA alumni from that region for open dialogue about leadership within the region.  The second task will be to convene the leadership of the region to identify the assets of the region including its agriculture and food systems, natural resources and environment, business and manufacturing and the strength of its communities.  Participants will engage with departments of government, stakeholder groups, local NGO’s and the business community to develop an in-depth understanding of the region. Each team will plan a session for the entire cohort within the assigned region and they will seek a project for GLLA to engage in that partners with existing local groups.

Cultivating Leadership for Michigan

The Great Lakes Leadership Academy (GLLA) was developed by Michigan State University (MSU) along with a broad constituency of stakeholders. The diverse group concluded there is a tremendous need for empowering and facilitative leaders that will propel Michigan forward toward economic and environmental sustainability while addressing the needs of all Michigan citizens. They designed GLLA to bring together leaders from diverse audiences and expose them to critical issues associated with the sustainability of Great Lakes communities along with innovative, equitable and inclusive approaches for addressing those issues.  Specific topics include group problem-solving and collaborative decision making; dialogue and inclusive listening where unusual as well as usual voices are heard; leadership through crisis; framing and developing strategies to transform communities; servant leadership and stewardship of the public trust; creating trustworthy and equitable institutions; ethical and entrepreneurial leadership; appreciative inquiry and other models for equitable civic engagement; and valuing diverse opinions, abilities and cultures.

Application for GLLA - Leadership Advancement Program is open.

Application closes at 11:59 p.m. on April 1, 2021.


Michigan State University is committed to providing equal opportunity for participation in all programs, services and activities. Accommodations for persons with disabilities may be requested by contacting the event contact two weeks prior to the start of the event. Requests received after this date will be honored whenever possible.

Contact Information

For information, contact Ritchie Harrison at