HomeEducationBoreas Leadership ProgramThe Boreas fall workshop schedule is here!

The Boreas fall workshop schedule is here!

Are you a graduate or professional student who wants to create change or make impact? Are you looking for ways to develop your skills as a professional and change maker? Are you looking for fellow students who are interested in similar things? Yes?

Check out the Boreas workshops! Our fall schedule is available now (see below).

Boreas is a leadership development program for graduate and professional students and post-docs from any discipline at the UMN who are interested in developing the skills, perspectives, and relationships to grow as leaders, professionals, and change agents. The program is offered the UMN Institute on the Environment.

At Boreas workshops you will be introduced to leadership concepts and skills, get the chance to practice them, and make a plan for applying them in your work and life. All of this great stuff happens in the context of an interdisciplinary group of engaged students. It’s useful and fun!

Boreas offers a series of workshops in four key areas – communications and media, integrative leadership, public skills, and systems thinking and tools. Learn more details about workshops here.

Learn more about workshops overall, check out our fall schedule below, and sign up by filling out a (short!) application.

Applications for fall Boreas workshops are due October 10.


Boreas Fall 2016 Workshops

Communications Workshops
In My Opinion
Wednesday, 11/16, 2 – 4:30 p.m.
It’s easier than ever to enter the public conversation through a variety of forums such as Facebook, tweets and tirades at your local bar. Still, a well-crafted opinion piece holds sway. If you have the skills, discipline, rigor and leadership to put your ideas out into this more formal public conversation, you can share your viewpoint with thousands or even millions of influential people. This workshop will introduce you to the art of the op-ed, get you started on your very own op-ed and offer ideas on where you can pitch your finished piece. We bring in experts, including editors from major Twin Cities media, to help.

Building Better Presentations
Thursday, 11/17, 2:00 – 4:30 p.m.
In case you haven’t heard, IonE has a pretty famous presentation expert who’s been helping to raise the quality of presentations at the University for years. Now you, too, can benefit from the insight and coaching of IonE communications director Todd Reubold. Learn presentation design and delivery best practices. Explore presenting to scientific vs. general audiences. Improve one of your own presentations. You’ll have to deliver presentations in graduate school and beyond, no question. If you get good at it, you will earn the eternal gratitude of your audiences. Oh, and you’ll be a more respected leader.

Telling Your Story
Wednesday, 12/7, 1:30 – 4:00 p.m.
Storytelling is an important leadership skill if you’re interested in science, policy and having an impact. This workshop will help you understand others’ stories and get better at telling your own. You’ll be able to answer the questions: Why do you do what you do? Why does your work matter? You’ll even gain a few ideas about how you can practice telling your story and so grow your leadership.

Public Skills Workshops
Developing Intercultural Competence
Tuesday, 10/18, 1:30 – 4:30 p.m.
Do you want to be more effective at navigating cultural differences at home or abroad? This workshop is designed to give you an overview on strategies not only to successfully overcome sticky cultural barriers and misunderstandings, but to understand and maximize the benefits of working across cultures. Participants will engage in activities to enhance their self-knowledge through the application of real-life scenarios.

Negotiating Basics
Thursday, 10/27, 1:30 – 4:30 p.m.
We don’t always agree, especially on really important matters. But we still need to make decisions and figure out how to move forward collectively. Strong negotiation skills will help you facilitate decision-making and make you a better leader. This workshop introduces participants to basic principles of negotiation and provides the opportunity for practice. Margaret Kelliher, former speaker of the Minnesota House of Representatives, teaches this workshop. She’s negotiated state budget deals and taught negotiation at the Humphrey School. Now she’s bringing her unique perspective to Boreas.

Meetings that Matter
Tuesday, 11/1, 1:30 – 4:30 p.m.
You’ve almost certainly sat through a bad meeting. But have you ever been part of a meeting that feels transformational? Or at least productive? Done right, meetings facilitate great work. And you can learn to better facilitate meetings that matter. In this workshop, you will learn and practice a strategy to become a master of meetings. Try out some meeting games (yes, games at meetings!). Get ready to harness the contributions of colleagues and collaborators. Earn gratitude for not wasting time with bad meetings.

Systems Thinking and Tools
Friday and Saturday, 12/2 and 12/3, 9 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Participation on both days is required for this workshop.

The complexity of the social, biological, and physical systems often defies human intuition. Few people are prepared to work through the complexities within a discipline, much less problems that transcend disciplines. Systems thinking is a set of approaches used to describe and simulate the interactions among components of complex systems. Systems thinking can provide insights into the functioning of systems and contribute to solutions for today’s difficult challenges.

Integrative Leadership
Fridays, 10/21 and 10/28, 9 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Participation on both days is required for this workshop.

Solving environmental challenges requires the best efforts of teams of people with diverse skills and perspectives. The Boreas integrative leadership workshop empowers participants with integrative leadership skills for making meaningful progress on tough problems.

This experience is not for spectators! Participants learn about leadership practices and then practice and apply them in an experiential, learning lab format. Participants sharpen their abilities to address common challenges in leading diverse groups working on wicked environmental problems, practice conflict management and polarity mapping tools for engaging in thorny environmental dilemmas, learn from examples of successful integrative leadership, and build networks among participants with differing perspectives and skills.


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