The Brown University Leadership Institute

By Eric Eng

By Eric Eng

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The Brown University Leadership Institute

In the ever-evolving landscape of education, the Brown University’s Leadership Institute stands as a beacon of inspiration and opportunity for high school students seeking to unlock their leadership potential.

Brown University, located in historic Providence, Rhode Island, is an Ivy League institution renowned for its commitment to academic excellence, diversity, and innovation.

Founded in 1764, it has a storied history of producing leaders and changemakers who have left an indelible mark on society. It’s within this hallowed academic institution that the Brown Leadership Institute finds its roots.

This institute has a rich history of nurturing young minds and molding them into future leaders. In this article, we will provide insight into how you can become a part of this transformative experience, called The Brown Leadership Institute.

What is the Brown University Leadership Institute?

The Brown University’s Leadership Institute is an immersive summer program designed for high school students who aspire to become leaders in their communities, schools, and beyond.

This program, which draws upon Brown University’s expertise in leadership and education, offers a dynamic and engaging curriculum that empowers students with the skills, knowledge, and confidence needed to effect positive change in the world.

Throughout the globe, young individuals are fervently championing change, whether it be on a local or global scale.

The Brown Leadership Institute offers a remarkable opportunity to enhance your comprehension of intricate societal issues and your capacity to promote social justice, regardless of your current level of involvement.

There are two avenues for engaging with the Leadership Institute:

  1. Two-week, in-person sessions held on campus.
  2. Four-week virtual sessions conducted online.

Regardless of the path you choose, you will connect with fellow students hailing from diverse corners of the world, all united by their fervor for a broad spectrum of causes.

These causes encompass areas such as social entrepreneurship, racial equality, legal and social movements, and gender equity. During your time, you’ll immerse yourself in captivating subjects within a course of your preference, actively collaborating with both your peers and instructor.

As you grapple with intricate issues and collaboratively brainstorm potential resolutions, you’ll refine your skills in active listening, public speaking, problem-solving, conflict resolution, and teamwork—cultivating a model of leadership that hinges on cooperation.

Building upon this newfound knowledge, you’ll craft an Action Plan that you can bring back to your school or community for practical implementation.

Which Area of Study Should You Select at The Brown University Leadership Institute?

Pick a specific course of study from a wide variety of choices, all of which revolve around current social issues and topics. In the past, the available course options have included:

  1. Women and Leadership
  2. Beyond the Scoreboard: Leadership and Societal Transformation in Sports
  3. Leadership, Legalities, and Social Movements
  4. Leadership and Cross-Cultural Communication
  5. Navigating Evolving Business Landscapes: Social Entrepreneurship
  6. Leadership in the Realm of Global Health

Who Is Eligible to Join?

Participants will have finished grades 10 through 12 and are between the ages of 15 and 18.

Female students talking outdoors on the sidewalk

What Are the Advantages of Enrolling in Brown University Leadership Institute?

At The Brown University Leadership Institute, you will actively engage with leadership through a variety of discussions and hands-on activities.

You will join in workshops covering various aspects of leadership, such as public speaking, leadership styles, diversity, and the Social Change Model of Leadership.

Here’s what you’ll gain from your experience:

  • Delve into leadership complexities related to intricate societal issues.
  • Recognize and assess the strengths and limitations inherent in your current leadership approach.
  • Enhance your competencies in public speaking, attentive listening, and problem-solving.
  • Expand your proficiency in collaborating with diverse groups.

Is the Program On-Site or Virtual?

A two-week residential program conducted at the Brown University campus in Providence, Rhode Island, and a four-week online program accessible from anywhere through Canvas, which is Brown University’s Learning Management System (LMS).

A Day In The Life of a Student at The Brown Leadership Institute

While you’ll have the autonomy to manage your time beyond your class hours and scheduled Leadership Workshops, your accommodation will be provided on campus, within the residence halls of Brown University, where you’ll reside alongside fellow Leadership Institute students, fostering a robust learning community.

On Campus Experience

Students residing on campus will dine in Brown’s cafeteria facilities and enjoy access to the university’s libraries, study centers, and Writing Center.

Despite time constraints, you will also have opportunities to engage with other pre-college students through various activities designed to promote personal growth.

Here’s what your typical day looks like:

  • 7:30 a.m. to 9 a.m. – Commence the day with breakfast in the dining hall.
  • 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. – Engage in classes and Leadership Workshops.
  • 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. – Enjoy lunch in a dining hall.
  • 12:30 p.m. to 3 p.m. – Continue with classes and Leadership Workshops.
  • 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. – Embrace free time for homework or participation in co-curricular activities.
  • 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. – Dine in a dining hall for dinner.
  • 7:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. – More free time for homework or co-curricular activities. Expect to dedicate 1-3 hours daily to homework.
  • 10 p.m. – Observe the curfew.

two female students talking inside a dorm room

Online Experience

Participating in the online component of the Leadership Institute will involve a mix of self-paced and interactive elements.

You’ll have access to asynchronous content, which you can engage with at your own convenience, along with mandatory synchronous workshops with your peers and individual meetings with your instructor.

There will also be optional webinars featuring guest speakers. This blended approach to learning offers you the chance to hone your leadership abilities further, explore socially responsible leadership, and craft a meaningful Action Plan.

Studying online affords you the freedom to dictate where and how you learn, placing the responsibility of managing your out-of-class work squarely in your hands.

This environment encourages reflection, reading, and writing, fostering the development of essential critical thinking skills.

It also provides an opportunity to strengthen your self-discipline and sense of personal responsibility—qualities crucial for success in any learning setting.

By participating in an online course, you’ll become more adept at online learning, a format that is increasingly significant both inside and outside the educational sphere.

Here’s what your typical day looks like:

Plan to allocate several hours each day, approximately 15-20 hours per week, to a variety of activities directly related to your chosen course.

Most days will involve independent reading, engaging in written discussions with your peers, listening to guest lectures or instructor-provided videos, and dedicating time to crafting your Action Plan.

Twice a week, synchronous workshops will bring you together with your classmates. You’ll also have virtual one-on-one meetings with instructors and engage with a community of fellow learners who are all committed to effecting positive change in their communities and the world.

Beyond the virtual classroom, you’ll have opportunities to interact with other pre-college students participating in various programs. These activities are designed to foster your personal and academic growth.

How to Apply at The Brown University Leadership Institute?

At the Brown Leadership Institute, they organize courses into programs, each with a distinct focus. While all admitted students have the flexibility to enroll in courses across any program they offer, it’s advisable to identify the program that aligns best with your goals when initiating the enrollment process.

Programs may differ in terms of schedules, locations, or expected outcomes. Selecting a program serves as a valuable initial step in determining the course that suits you best.

You should also keep in mind that certain programs may have specific eligibility requirements related to grade level, age, or language proficiency.

With a diverse array of over 300 courses at your disposal, Brown offers a wide spectrum of opportunities to explore your interests and tap into your potential.

A step-by-step guide to applying for the Lott Leadership Institute

Create Your Student Account

Start by setting up your account on the student portal. Please ensure that you create only one account per applicant. All applications must be submitted electronically through your student portal.

Complete Your Application

Within your student portal, fill out your application, providing essential personal information. This is also where you’ll meet the essay requirement, enter the name and email address of the individual writing your recommendation (if applicable), and upload your transcript and the most recent grade report.

Stay Informed

After submitting your application, regularly check your student portal for updates. You may receive communications if any information is missing or incomplete. Admissions decisions will also be posted on your student portal.

By following these steps, you’ll be well on your way to embarking on an enriching educational journey with Brown Pre-College.

Is it Possible to Register for Multiple Courses?

Each summer, students have the opportunity to register for one Leadership Institute course, irrespective of whether it is delivered online or in person on campus.

A Complete Application Requirements at The Brown University Leadership Institute

Essay Requirement

As part of the application process, you will need to submit a 250–500-word essay in response to one of the following prompts:

  1. During your time at Brown Pre-College, you’re likely to encounter a new environment, explore unfamiliar subjects, and make friends from diverse backgrounds worldwide.
  2. Share an experience when you ventured into uncharted territory, learned something new, or stepped outside your comfort zone. What insights did you gain from this experience that will contribute to your success at Brown Pre-College?
  3. Reflect on a valuable lesson you’ve acquired from someone you’ve encountered, been inspired by, or learned about. How do you plan to incorporate this newfound knowledge into your Pre-College journey?
  4. Supplementary Essay (Optional): You have the choice to submit an extra essay if there are aspects of your application that you haven’t covered elsewhere. This essay could be used to provide details about your extracurricular involvements, offer an explanation for fluctuations in your grades, or share any other circumstances you believe the Admissions Team should take into account.
  5. Application Fee: You are required to pay a non-refundable application fee using a credit card within the secure application form:
    • Application fee when submitted by the specified deadline: $65
    • Application fee when submitted on or after the specified deadline: $100

Who is Eligible for An Application Fee Waiver?

You may request an application fee waiver for one of the following reasons:

  • You are approved for a free or reduced school lunch program in the U.S. for the current year, including need-based school-wide free lunch programs under the Community Eligibility Provision. (If you attend a private school where meals are included in the tuition fee, you may qualify for a free/reduced lunch waiver if you receive a significant need-based scholarship in order to attend your school.)
  • You are enrolled in a school in the Providence Public School District (PPSD) in Rhode Island.
  • You are associated with an official Brown Pre-College partner organization and have been named a Partner Scholar Nominee by that organization. (You will need to select your partner organization from a drop-down list when requesting a partner fee waiver. Only listed partner organizations are eligible.)
  • You are the dependent of a benefits-eligible Brown University employee who has been employed by the University for at least six months. If approved, the application fee waiver eliminates the application fee only; it does not reduce the actual cost of the program.

Take note that approval of an application fee waiver request does not automatically qualify you for additional financial aid in the form of a scholarship. Please explore the scholarship opportunities that may be available to eligible applicants at Brown Leadership Institute.

Most scholarship opportunities have specific eligibility requirements and require a separate scholarship application that must be submitted by the specified deadline.

How to Request an Application Fee Waiver

  • The option to request an application fee waiver is integrated into the program application itself.
  • Toward the end of your application, you will be prompted to indicate whether you wish to seek an application fee waiver.
  • In some cases, you may be required to provide documentation supporting your eligibility for an application fee waiver.
  • Notification of the approval or denial of your fee waiver request will be conveyed through your student portal. Please allow 1-3 business days for the review process. If additional information is needed, the billing team will contact you via email.
  • If your fee waiver request is denied, you will be responsible for settling the application fee or withdrawing your application. Application assessments will only commence once the waiver is approved or the fee is paid.

Group of three students

Scholarship Opportunities for Brown Precollege

Brown Pre-College offers a range of scholarship options, each with specific eligibility criteria outlined broadly and in more detail in this article.

Sibley Scholarships

The Sibley Scholarship honors the former Dean Karen Sibley, who played a pivotal role in the growth and development of Brown’s Pre-College programs from 2003 to 2019.

During her tenure, Dean Sibley was instrumental in significantly expanding financial assistance opportunities for students whose financial circumstances would otherwise prevent them from participating in the program.

These scholarships are granted to students with demonstrated financial need, which is assessed by considering various factors, including:

  • Family income
  • Family size
  • Savings and investments
  • Housing and educational expenses

It’s important to note that all students, including Sibley Scholarship recipients (with the exception of PPSD and Partner Scholarship recipients), are required to submit a non-refundable $300 deposit to reserve a spot in the Pre-College Program.

If receiving financial assistance is crucial to your participation in the program, we recommend deferring the payment of the non-refundable $300 deposit until you have received your scholarship award decision.

If you meet the eligibility criteria, you will have the opportunity to apply for a Sibley Scholarship immediately after submitting your program application. At that point, a link to the scholarship application will become accessible in the Financial Information section of your student portal.

It’s worth noting that while the scholarship application can be completed prior to an admission decision, scholarship notifications will only be sent to applicants admitted to the program. Please be aware that scholarship information is reviewed confidentially by the scholarship team and does not influence admission decisions.

2PPSD Scholarships

Exclusive to students attending a school within the Providence Public School District, located in Providence, Rhode Island.

In collaboration with the Providence Public School District, Brown Pre-College Programs are dedicated to expanding access for district students to rigorous academic and college preparatory opportunities available through our courses and extracurricular experiences.

If you are currently enrolled in a PPSD school (you may check Brown University’s official website to see the list of schools), you will qualify to fill out a PPSD Scholarship application as soon as you submit your program application.

At that point, a link to the scholarship form will become accessible in the Financial Information section of your student portal.

While the scholarship form is available for completion before an admission decision is reached, scholarship notifications will only be sent to applicants who gain admission to the program.

It’s essential to understand that the information you provide in the PPSD scholarship form will not impact the amount of the PPSD scholarship award.

All PPSD students who complete the scholarship form and are admitted to the Brown Pre-College Program will be granted a full scholarship.

Partner Scholarships

These scholarships are specifically designated for students who have been identified and nominated by partnering organizations.

Due to the commitment and generous financial backing of numerous partner organizations, Brown University warmly embraces numerous Partner Scholars each summer, granting them the chance to participate in our pre-college programs.

They are delighted to extend summer learning opportunities to these gifted students and, in return, deeply appreciative that they can expand the impact of their scholarship funds. Presently, the partnerships play a vital role in expanding access to higher education for:

  1. Students belonging to historically underrepresented communities.
  2. First-generation students.
  3. Individuals with limited financial means.

Brown Employee Dependent Scholarships

Limited to dependents of Brown University staff and faculty members who are eligible for benefits and have been employed by the university for a minimum of six months.

Eligible dependents of Brown University employees have the opportunity to request an application fee waiver. If they are admitted to a summer Pre-College program, they can choose between a 20% non-taxable Employee Dependent Scholarship or a 50% partially taxable Employee Dependent Scholarship (with 30% being taxable to the Brown employee).

Brown Pre-College does not provide merit-based scholarships.

high school students gather in front of the lockers

Why Should You Consider Joining the Brown University Leadership Institute?

  • Become part of a student community driven by a passion for driving social change.
  • Nurture socially responsible leadership skills and craft a purposeful Action Plan.
  • Immerse yourself in stimulating and pertinent academic material within your selected course.
  • Acquire guidance, knowledge, and the capacity to address pressing issues in effective and enduring ways.
  • Focus on learning without the stress of traditional grading.
  • Upon successful completion, receive a Course Performance Report and a Certificate of Achievement.

Final Thoughts

The Brown University Leadership Institute offers you a remarkable opportunity to ignite your passion for change, cultivate your leadership potential, and join a global community of like-minded young visionaries.

This transformative journey will empower you to confront complex social issues, foster meaningful connections, and develop the skills needed to drive positive, lasting impact in your communities and beyond.

Leadership is not defined by age but by the courage to take action. Your voice matters, your ideas are valuable, and your capacity to effect change is boundless. Seize this chance to lead with purpose, to inspire, and to shape a brighter future for all.

The world awaits your leadership, and the Brown Leadership Institute is your launchpad for a journey of empowerment, enlightenment, and endless possibilities.

If you need further discussion or have questions about college admissions, AdmissionSight is here to provide expert assistance. With more than ten years of experience, our team has a proven track record of guiding students successfully through the competitive admissions journey, helping them secure spots at some of the world’s most prestigious universities. Don’t hesitate to schedule an appointment today for your first consultation!


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