Wedgworth Leadership Institute
The Wedgworth Leadership Institute for Agriculture and Natural Resources develops and refines the leadership capabilities of young leaders, preparing them to become increasingly involved in policy formation at various levels in Florida. These programs are designed for individuals working in the areas of agriculture and natural resources and who have taken, or are interested in taking, greater leadership roles in the private and/or public sectors at the community, state, national or international levels.
During the first year, participants will gain a thorough understanding of current and projected issues facing decision-makers at the local and state levels. They will also learn how to provide leadership in addressing issues at these levels. The second year is devoted to national and international issues and the impact they have on the State of Florida.
Each class participates in 11 study/travel seminars involving about 55 days over 22 months. These seminars are scheduled on alternating months. Seminars include a 10-12 day seminar in Washington, D.C. and a 15-17 day seminar abroad.
- Prepares potential leaders to assume greater leadership responsibilities in their organizations, industries and communities.
- Assembles individual networks composed of class members, alumni and program resources for the purpose of developing future industry, organizational, civic and political leaders.
- Creates strategic alliances and builds strong linkages within and across Florida’s agriculture and natural resources sectors.
- Analyzes complex issues facing individuals interested in areas related to agriculture, natural resources and Florida’s communities.
- Applies interpersonal skills to develop a better understanding of people—themselves, fellow citizens and their environment to more effectively work with individuals from diverse backgrounds.
- Creates an understanding of social, economic and political systems in which people function, and how to work within these systems to effectively bring about change.
Application and Selection Process
Eligible individuals typically make a substantial percentage of their income from Florida agriculture, natural resources and/or related areas. Successful applicants generally demonstrate a willingness and capacity for long-term leadership. Typically, each class is made up of 30 individuals.