The curriculum of the summer leadership Academy has been custom-designed to introduce leadership concepts and skills in tune with the societies and cultures of Central Eurasia. CELA is not another one-directional West-lectures-East initiative. At CELA workshops, learning about culturally diverse approaches to leadership is a collaborative effort between instructors and participants. The curriculum – continuously refined and improved with input from participants – is organized around structured teaching units (modules) and case studies that have been specially modeled on Central Eurasian situations. Current modules include: Leadership Styles; Cultural Aspects of Leadership; Interpersonal Relations; Pitfalls in Decision-Making; Team-Building; Conflict Management; and Negotiation Skills. Participants experience an interactive learning environment, where they engage with internationally recognized business innovators, political leaders, and public figures. CELA sessions are not merely “chalk-and-talk”!
A key part of the Academy curriculum is the breakout groups. Material may be introduced in structured modules in plenary session, but no module may be said to be complete until its material has been thoroughly discussed and tested by participants in small breakout groups overseen by facilitators. The groups allow participants to talk and interact more meaningfully with one another: for it is one of the axioms of CELA that some of the most valuable teaching the course can offer will result from participants learning from one another.
Leadership is about meeting challenges in the real world – and no amount of instruction can fully capture the myriad problems real leaders face. So CELA invites internationally renowned leaders to discuss challenges they have faced in their own careers and debate their choices with the participants. Speakers are as diverse as Martti Ahtisaari, former President of Finland, Bill Dearstyne of Johnson and Johnson and Barbara Hay, British Consul-General in Istanbul and former Ambassador to Uzbekistan and Tajikistan. These sessions, coupled with the deep interaction with facilitators and faculty give the participants a safe environment to discuss their lives, challenges and try out new skills and thinking.
All participants, faculty and facilitators live together in the dorms at Koç University, and share the same cafeteria, lounge and recreational facilities as peers. This 24/7 interaction allows everyone to become comfortable and develop the close friendships and trust necessary for long-lasting interaction and a strong network.
You can find here a sample of the agenda for the Summer Academy in 2017 for the CELA 13 participants. The latest agenda for CELA 14 Summer Academy in 2018 will come soon.