Alma Blount succeeded Korstad as HLP director in 2001, and during the next decade HLP became nationally known for its pedagogy that combines academic coursework, experiential learning opportunities, and critical reflection. There has also been an increased emphasis on Research Service Learning, both through HLP and Scholarship with a Civic Mission, a four-year initiative created by HLP and the Kenan Institute for Ethics, funded by the U.S. Department of Education, and designed as a campus-wide demonstration project about research service learning. Through the research service learning model, students work with community partners to design field-based research projects that serve community needs and interests. As they conduct their research they also engage in a rigorous process of critical reflection, which helps them discern the ethical issues and leadership dilemmas inherent in their work.
Throughout the Hart Leadership Program’s history, thousands of students have taken our courses or participated in our programs. During an alumni survey conducted in 2006, our former students reported that their Hart Leadership experience was either the best, or one of their top three experiences at Duke. Our faculty have received praise for helping students mobilize different perspectives in the problem solving process, and for encouraging alumni to continue to promote systemic interventions that build healthy communities and institutions.
As the number of courses has expanded and the ranks of our faculty have grown over the years, the Hart Leadership Program has stayed true to its original mission of helping students recognize their own potential for ethical leadership. The Terry Sanford Institute has now become the Sanford School of Public Policy, and the Hart Leadership Program is still playing an integral role in sustaining the strength of the undergraduate public policy major, while continuing to serve as a foundation for the study of ethics and leadership at Duke.