Sixteen Duke undergraduate students are working on their summer projects with community partners through Service Opportunities in Leadership (SOL), a signature component of the Hart Leadership Program.
SOL is a nationally recognized, intensive 12-month leadership program for students who are interested in complex social and political issues and the art of implementing systemic political change. SOL’s three-stage structure includes a preparation (gateway) course in the spring, a collaboratively-designed community based research (CBR) project with an organization in the summer, and a follow-up (capstone) seminar in the fall. Throughout, students participate in a structured process of critical reflection on the ethical, intellectual and personal aspects of their community-based research project. This reflection helps them discern ethical issues and leadership dilemmas inherent in their work.
We believe that leadership in the public sector is honed through meaningful service and thoughtful engagement with communities. Students collaborate with community partners to design field-based service and research projects that are well-grounded in the context to address community needs. From experience, this model enables students to develop their own leadership skills and do so in a manner that is respectful of the communities.
Latest SOL Stories
Every year, SOL students tackle complex social issues in communities around the world. Read about the 2017 SOL students and learn more about their research here.
"To come out of the comfort zone of doing all the things that you know how to do and that you're trained to do and instead go out into people's lives and ask real questions was terrifying. But it was also incredibly transformative."
"It starts by realizing when you’re stuck, and not being afraid to recognize that—then to work with those around you and to look within yourself to try and find solutions."