The ELP is a Brussels-based project where you will develop leadership skills through theoretical and practical methodologies by living together with your fellows for five months. Our Programme is divided in five core segments. Each of these holistic segments contribute to the formation of young leaders in the European Union offering them a strong spiritual base to become better leaders.
Private sessions with amazing leaders
The segment of politics allows our Fellows to be immersed in the administrative and political life of the EU institutions having the opportunity to meet with political leaders in Brussels, Luxembourg, Strasbourg and beyond.
Some of our speakers are in high ranking positions or were placed to influence historical decisions, others made life changing decisions by joining or quitting the institutions. The variety of our guest speakers is exactly offering an incredible input: it is up to each Fellow to find the takeaway message of our speakers. The speakers so far have been coming from the European Commission, European Parliament, other EU institutions, NGOs and academia, from the Brussels ecosystem and national capitals, as well as actors from the ground, from Lebanon to Bulgaria. It is in an intimate setting, with small numbers of participants, to keep the conversation flowing and as honest as possible. Sometimes it is in a form of a fireside chat or an early morning office visit, but the point is to get 90 minutes of undisturbed attention from a leader to our Fellows. Later, the discussions might be digested collectively, as well as with the coaches and mentors. We have seen that several members of our alumni have changed track due to this special way of exchanging ideas.
Workshops, Seminars and Conferences
A city like Brussels can offer an indefinite number of workshops, seminars and Conferences. The programme offers the Fellows the possibility to attend some of them related to EU issues, leadership and management. Besides the conferences, the Fellows can also develop their leadership skills throught simulation games. ELP relies on FLIGBY, a leadership program that combines video-game learning experience with benchmark-based competence assessment, and STRATAGEM games.
Every Fellow is invited to choose mentors to work with them on their research paper, presented in the closing ceremony of the programme to a jury in the old Jesuit quarters of University of Antwerpen, UCSIA.
Give back to your community
All Fellows are required to engage in a bi-weekly community service activity of their choice in order to keep a foot in the everyday reality. Shall that be serving refugees at the Gare du Nord or visiting patients or meeting the elderly. While the Brussels bubble offers many opportunities to network, to meet like-minded people enjoying heated debates, it is of utmost importance to keep the right balance between the white corridors of EU institutions and the reality of suburbs and the countryside. We believe that to build a long term career of a future leader involves the skill of being connected to the many-faced reality of people being served. This segment helps you to find your calling in a different manner, it is not about what you are being offered, it is about how you can use your skills to benefit others.
In order to offer you ready choices, we cooperate with the non-governmental organisation Serve the City. It is not charity they provide, it is the invitation to walk with those in need by organizing projects on a weekly and monthly basis. Whether it is serving meals to the dwellers of an elderly home, offering help with language learning for asylum-seekers or social interaction for women in crisis, serving Breakfast4Refugees or other kinds of help with food outreach, we invite the Fellows to experience and understand the conditions of the vulnerable.
An Holistic Approach to Leadership Development
Coaching is one of the central segments of the five pillars of the European Leadership Programme. We believe that attention to the person is of utmost importance. Personal development is key for future leaders, while often receiving less focus in formations. It aims to provide the Fellows with tools to manage a life of a future leader. By attending a regular (varying from monthly to bi-weekly) individual coaching session and by taking part in a guided spiritual retreat and sharing groups, the Fellows build on their own calling and spirituality. It is deepened by required readings on both executive leadership and Catholic Social Teaching and Ignatian Spirituality.
The regular individual coaching sessions are based on the needs of the Fellow (coachee): it can be professional executive or personal coaching (counseling), or it can accompany or direct the spiritual growth of the Fellows. It is therefore defined as a one-on-one learning process promoting growth of both the person and the community/environment s/he is present in. It provides (spiritual) exercises for the period between and beyond two appointments, stressing the importance of the dedicated time for reflection which we believe to be the vital part of the life of a leader.
Make like-minded friends and enjoy Brussels
Brussels is a city of neverending opportunities for attending workshops, conferences, and events organized by the institutions. However, it is much more difficult to forge lifelong connections while catching up with the daily challenges at a new workplace. What makes European Leadership Programme unique is the possibility to stay at our ELP houses with the other Fellows who are at a very similar stage of their life. They could have just finished their degree entering their first entry-level jobs, could have gained experience in their home-country and now it is the right time for them to jump over to dive into the EU level decision making processes, or they are moving from private sector to public service or NGO work – whatever their story is, they want to settle in Brussels for a period of time.
Therefore housing means more than renting a room: it aims to bring together a community to feel more secure and rooted in the new circumstances. Managing a community life takes patience and management skills, and we provide you with the framework to test and improve your skills while getting to know each other. You are going to be developing your house rules together, and it solely depends on you how you divide your chores and responsibilities, whether you become an ecologically conscious community and you take the chance to use the time and space for debates on public life and spirituality.
Get to know our houses.