Contact LCSL

1110 Adele H. Stamp Student Union
University of Maryland
College Park, MD 20742


About the Program

Through the new Maryland-Memphis Leadership Exchange program, you'll explore social justice and community-based leadership within the context of interconnected social issues and communities in Washington DC metro area, Memphis, nationally, and worldwide. Through two four-day immersion experiences, one in Memphis and one in Washington DC, students from both University of Memphis and University of Maryland will meet with community and campus leaders, engage with nonprofit agency staff, and are engaged in interactive leadership learning environments with peers. 

Why Memphis, TN and Washington DC? 

Rich historical, social, and political connections exist between Memphis and the Washington DC metro area that will facilitate unique leadership learning.

  • Both Memphis and Washington DC have taken center stage in history and present day as places where people congregate, collaborate, and voice opposition or support for causes with national impact. While the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom and the Memphis Sanitation Workers' Strike are among the most well-known examples of organized leadership for change in these cities, both have also been the source of significant leadership and gatherings for advocacy around contemporary issues of gun violence, women’s rights, and the justice system.
  • As large metro areas, both with historically large and vibrant black populations and neighborhoods, Memphis and DC are cities that have struggled through similar shifts, trends, and issues in population, affordable housing, gentrification, educational equity, and labor over the last 2 decades. By examining past and projected changes in each city, students will be able to analyze larger trends and challenges affecting community well-being and leadership in the growing urban centers of our country.
  • These cities are centers for civil rights leadership and home to the National Civil Rights Museum and the National Museum of African American History and Culture  which showcase some of the most engaging and renowned narratives of individuals and groups involved in civil rights movements past and present. The experience will be able to draw on these vivid stories and displays for case studies, dialogue prompts, and individual reflection.

What will I gain?

  • Exposure and engagement in conversations across difference

  • Understanding of the systemic, institutional, local, and personal dimensions of complex social issues facing communities in Memphis, TN and Washington DC

  • A diverse network of student and community leaders across Memphis and Washington DC

  • Ability to examine and analyze leadership at the community level and an understanding of community-centered leadership models

Program Logistics:

        • This program has a non-refundable $100 participation fee, payable when you are accepted to the program. 
        • Flights and local transportation will be coordinated by the LCSL office. The UMD cohort will depart from DCA or BWI and travel as a group to and from Memphis in January.
        • UMD students will be housed in residence hall/apartment rooms of Memphis students during the Jan. 18-21 trip.
        • UMD student participants are expected to host 1 University of Memphis student during the Mar. 29-Apr. 1 trip, including providing a place to stay the night (residence hall, apartment, house, etc), even if that is a couch or an air mattress
        • All meals during the immersion experiences, except for 1, will be provided and paid for by the program. Meals/snacks in the airport and dinner on each Saturday will be on your own.

Program Components

Selected participants must be available and committed to engaging in all of the program components listed below.

  • 2 in-person meetings at UMD in November and December 2018
  • 1 online video conference meeting in January 2019
  • 4-day Immersion Experience in Memphis, TN from January 18th-21st, 2019
  • 1 in-person meeting at UMD in February/March 2019
  • 4-day Immersion Experience in Washington DC from March 29th-April 1st, 2019
  • Program debrief and wrap up meeting in April 2019


Applications are now closed. 

Applications will be open from November 7th-27th. 

All applicants will be asked to sign up for a 30-minute interview during the last week of November 

Participation in this program is limited to a small cohort of 12 students from each university to cultivate relationships and engage meaningfully with partners.

All applicants will be notified of your selection by November 30th.