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Career Leadership Academy To Graduate First Class This Weekend

The first 22 graduates of The University of Iowa's Career Leadership Academy will graduate in ceremonies on Sunday, Nov. 16. The Career Leadership Academy, which is part of the Pomerantz Career Center, is a four-semester academic program that helps UI undergraduates develop their leadership skills. The ceremony will take place Nov. 16 from 3 to 5 p.m. in the Levitt Center, One West Park Road, Iowa City.

The goal of the program is to prepare UI undergraduates to become successful professionals after college. Within the Career Leadership Academy are opportunities for students to network with professionals; learn about multiculturalism, diversity, and intercultural development; engage in team-building workshops; practice resume and cover letter writing; learn effective communication skills; attend etiquette dinners; lead service projects; and explore a variety of career search tools. The program is divided into four phases each semester: The Self-Aware Leader, The Leader Who Understands Others, The Leader Who Interacts with Others, and The Leader About to Engage the World.

The pilot phase of the Career Leadership Academy began in spring 2007 with 56 students. Since then the program has grown exponentially; there are now 349 UI undergraduates enrolled in the program. It is anticipated that by spring 2009 there will be 500 students in the academy.

"I feel fortunate to have had the opportunity to build this program while teaching this group of students," said Kelly Ashby, director of the academy. "They are remarkable young people, and I know they will do amazing things in their future careers. In addition, they will be contributing members of any community as they understand the importance of service in leadership."

"We, as students and future employees, need to embrace our differences and use collaboration to our advantage," said Bridget Szeluga, vice president of the University of Iowa Student Government. "The Career Leadership Academy enables students to gain a better understanding of this important interaction."

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