President's Student Leadership Program

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I know if my leadership experience is strong enough to apply?

The President’s Student Leadership Program seeks applications from students who are active in their community or student life and are keen to further develop their leadership skills and practice. If you have used your skills and strengths to bring positive impacts for others in your community, student environment, or work we encourage you to apply. That is, some applicants may be members of the executive of their student and community organizations or active in community; others may have led more informally to make a difference.

Do I need an official transcript to apply?

UM students do not need transcripts to apply. Non-UM students need an official transcript to apply. Official transcripts are required for application packages to be deemed complete. Transcripts should be recent, not older than three months old at the time of application. Alternately, applicants may obtain a letter of enrolment from their institution verifying their ongoing successful status, and when they are expected to graduate from their program of study.

I am enrolled in a one-year masters program, am I eligible to apply to this program?

Yes, however you will be asked to commit to attending all sessions in the proceeding academic year. These will be one-day sessions on Saturdays approximately every eight weeks, from September of the current academic year until April of the following academic year.

I have a summer internship/co-op position/job when the President’s Student Leadership Program will be taking place – should I still apply?

Yes. We will provide letters on request, to successful applicants who might need to be excused from an internship, co-op or job for the core week (the second full week in June annually).

Who should I ask to write my testimonial letters needed for the application?

Supervisors, professors, advisors, teaching assistants, mentors or others who know and can comment in detail on your leadership contributions. All applications require two (2) testimonial letters that must be submited once prompted via email by the application deadline.

What is the time commitment for the program?

Core Week in June

The core week of the program is a multi-day, live-in seminar with site visits, group service project, hands-on leadership workshops and peer learning. It runs in the second full week of June annually, Sunday through Saturday.

The program is intensive, and most days will start at 8 a.m. (for breakfast) and end around 8:30 p.m.

Fall and winter sessions

Following the core week, there will be one-day sessions on Saturdays approximately every eight weeks from September to April of the following year.

Do I need to attend every day of the core week?

Yes. The core week of the program runs as an on-site, live-in seminar, full attendance and participation is required.

Are the Saturday seminars and events outside of the core week mandatory?

Yes. In-person follow-up seminars and events will take place bi-monthly (approximately every eight weeks) on Saturdays in the following academic year. All successful applicants are asked to commit to these Saturdays.  Travel funding will be available to successful applicants who reside outside of Winnipeg to attend the Saturday sessions.

Do I have to be present at all segments of the program?

Yes. This criterion is critical to the success of not just individual participant but the full cohort of students participating in the program. The program will be collaborative and immersive, bringing students and leaders together for a unique learning experience, and drawing on peer learning, which requires everyone’s presence throughout.

Do I have to stay in residence for the core week?

Yes. The live-in component of the program is an important aspect of the immersive design of the core week. Staying on-site will enable you to be fully present and ensure you have time to reflect about what you are experiencing day to day. The program will work most effectively as a retreat from your regular activities.  

What are accommodations like where successful applicants will stay?

Accommodations are high quality shared spaces.

Is there any preparatory work required for the program?

No preparatory work will be required. There will be a program website with background information for participants prior to the start date of the core week.   

How much does the PSLP program cost?

Participation in the President’s Student Leadership Program is funded through a student fellowship. It is fully funded, including meals, transportation to site visits, and accommodations. There is no direct cost to participants.

Will travel to the weekend seminars and events be funded?

Travel grants will be available to enable in-person participation in the weekend seminars and event outside of the core week, for students who need to travel to Winnipeg from other parts of the province.

I have responsibilities (such as children, elder-care, etc.) and would not be able to participate without financial support to help with these commitments. Should I still apply to the program?

A small bursary fund will be available by application for successful candidates who are not able to attend without financial support for childcare or other eligible expenses. An invoice to support the application is required.

What will the site visits to different organizations entail?

The program will involve a number of site visits where students will engage with leaders in their own organizations or companies, in different sectors of our economy and society. There will also be talks by renowned leaders as part of the on-site programs and workshops, both during the core week and in the later Saturday sessions during the year. Sites and sectors will include: 

  • ·         innovative businesses;
  • ·         the arts sector;
  • ·         Indigenous leadership and organizations;
  • ·         the justice system;
  • ·         information technology/artificial intelligence;
  • ·         healthcare and social services;
  • ·         construction and trades; and
  • ·         manufacturing.

Participants will hear from organizational leaders, ask questions and exchange ideas with the leaders to learn first-hand about their toughest challenges how they build thriving and sustainable organizations. Participants will work in diverse teams to reflect on what they learned, hear different perspectives, and report back to the group on observations and how they can apply what they learned to their own leadership.

Is the PSLP open to non-business students?

Yes. The PSLP is open to students from any Manitoba post-secondary institution, from any faculty or program.

Will I receive credits for participating in this program?

No. The President’s Student Leadership Program is a special non-credit program. A letter of accomplishment from the University of Manitoba will be awarded upon completion. As well, UM students who complete all components of the program will receive an Experience Record recognition on their transcripts.

Who we are

Connect with our team at the James W. Burns Leadership Institute.

  • Suzanne Gagnon

    Canada Life Chair in Leadership Education
    Associate Professor, Leadership and Organization
    Director, James W. Burns Leadership Institute
    Women Entrepreneurship Knowledge Hub Manitoba
    Room 414 Drake Centre

  • Melissa Gayle

    Program Coordinator and Assistant to the Director
    Room 358 Drake Centre

Visionary Investment
The James W. Burns Leadership Institute at the I.H. Asper School of Business has been created through the visionary investment from Canada Life, IG Wealth Management and the Power Corporation of Canada, as well as the Province of Manitoba.

Contact us

James W. Burns Leadership Institute
Room 359 Drake Centre
181 Freedman Cres.
University of Manitoba (Fort Garry Campus)
Winnipeg, MB R3T 5V4