Wentworth Leadership Institute for Employers

Wentworth leadership Institute

My applicant has “Wentworth Leadership Institute” listed on their resume… so what?

In a 2015 study by the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE), it was found that the most highly sought attribute in candidates by employers was leadership. The question therein lies: what is leadership? What components and concepts make up this complex and highly valued attribute?

Through the Wentworth Leadership Institute, a three-phase program comprised of both classroom and experiential learning, students address this question in a variety of ways. The curriculum was uniquely designed to incorporate both the Worthy Leadership Model and the Student Leadership competencies; together, these make up the course which introduces students to the basics of leadership and encourage fostering its growth and development during their time at Wentworth and beyond.

Attributes employers seek on a candidate's resume

The Worthy Leadership Model serves as an overall framework for course content, encouraging three components of leadership:

  1. The CAPACITY to lead – what you CAN do in your role;
  2. The COMMITMENT to lead – what you WANT TO DO in your role;
  3. The CHARACTER to lead – what you WILL DO based on WHO you are in your role.

Further, the curriculum has been evaluated through the Student Leadership Competency lens, which emphasizes the most critical areas of competency across 522 accredited academic programs. In partnership with NACE, the SLC created the essential Workforce Competencies – some of the most desired traits in employees across many careers and fields. Focusing on the Student Leadership Competencies pertaining to various academic programs will translate into development of the Workforce Competencies. The curriculum for all three phases of the Wentworth Leadership Institute is centered around these two frameworks.

Workforce Competencies

Phase I

Students who complete Phase I have participated in an eight-week course covering various topics – many of which were also highly valued in the 2015 NACE study – such as communication, team building and team dynamics, problem solving, and adaptability. By the end of Phase I, students are able to:

  • Be able to think critically
  • Be able to problem solve
  • Demonstrate an ability to manage finances and resources
  • Demonstrate an ability to stay positive throughout a variety of situations
  • Demonstrate an ability to respond/change/adapt to a situation as it changes
  • Create an action plan to meet their vision
  • Be able to set SMART (specific, measureable, attainable, realistic & timely) goals
  • Be able to communicate effectively through writing & listening.
  • Understand the mission and history of their club/position/office/institute (offices)
  • Be aware of the variety of issues that make up diversity
  • Identify personal or organizational strengths and weaknesses
  • Follow through on commitments
  • Understand their own personal values
  • Be truthful
  • Use resources appropriately

Phase II

Students who complete Phase II have participated in a four-week course, more focused and intensive than Phase I. These four sessions dive further into topics, including advanced communication, ethics, inclusion and teamwork. By the end of Phase II, students are able to do the following in addition to what they learned in Phase I:

  • Explain how the student’s leadership role impacts community on campus.
  • Articulate how they will integrate social justice and promote inclusive environments.
  • Express value of involvement.
  • Offer praise to others
  • Understand and hold themselves to the values, expectations, and goals of their groups, offices, and missions.
  • Understand the interconnectivity of their tasks and work with their groups, offices, and missions.

Phase III

Students who have completed Phase III have completed a year-long self-directed capstone project. These students choose and thoroughly explore a community and identify an issue that affects it. They then use their own leadership skills and values in addition to what they have learned in Phases I and II to work to propose, implement and reflect upon a solution.


Please email leadership@wit.edu or call 617-989-4080.

"Leadership. . . the ability to guide, direct, or influence people in a way that has great merit, character, and value."

(Thompson, Phillips, Grahek & Fay, 2008)